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How To Travel The Queer Way: A Black Queer Travel Guide

Photo Credit: Shutterstock

With summer around the corner and more and more vaccinations rolling out, traveling around the world is going to pick up once more. And it’s important to know the places that are and aren’t safe to travel to if you are openly queer throughout the world.

Back in March, a ranking was done for all the countries and their acceptance of LGBT+ in terms of safety, from least safe to most safe. And while we won’t be listing all 150 countries here, we will look at some of the highest ranked ones. For anyone interested in the complete list you can find it here.

Also, it is important to remember that in most of these countries, no matter what these kind of lists state, there is a possibility for anti-blackness and anti-queerness to occur. Additionally, we would like to note that regardless of a state or country’s laws, when it comes to LGBT+ people, we must always remember to take precautions and to trust our gut when it comes to traveling in an unfamiliar place.

Top 10 Safest Countries for Queer Travel:

  1. Canada

  2. Netherlands

  3. Sweden

  4. Malta

  5. Portugal

  6. Belgium

  7. United Kingdom

  8. Spain

  9. Uruguay

  10. Norway

These ten countries have gold stars across the board queer rights, based on the following considerations: they have legal same sex marriage, protections against discrimination, criminalization of violence against LGBT+, transgender legal identity laws and more.

Next 5 Safest Countries for Queer travel:

  1. France

  2. Iceland

  3. Denmark

  4. Australia - Criminalization of violence laws and transgender rights vary by state

These countries are also just as safe, for the most part, having scored really well on this list when it comes to protections against the queer community. Of course, no country is perfect, not even the top 10 safest. While it is unlikely to run into any issues when traveling to these places, as always it is important to proceed with a level of awareness and caution when traveling abroad in general, but especially when black and queer.

Since none of these lists focus on the black community when it comes to travel, I am now going to provide you with an overlap of countries and cities that are confirmed safe for both black and queer people, specifically womxn.

  1. Toronto, Canada

  2. Reykjavik, Iceland

  3. France (as a whole)

  4. Ireland (as a whole)

  5. Stockholm, Sweden

For those not looking to travel outside of the greater United States this summer here are some states that have a high ranking for safety regarding the LGBT+ community. For a more extensive list, visit here.

Top 10 safest states for LBGT+:

  1. Nevada – low rate of hate crimes centered around gender or sexual orientation.

  2. Vermont – high access to LBGT+ centers

  3. New York – 800k LBGT+ population, 18 pride centers

  4. Oregon – however, high rate of hate crimes

  5. California – over 1.5 mil LGBT+ population and 37 pride centers

  6. Delaware – advertises itself as a gay-friendly tourist destination

  7. New Mexico – gender neutral public restrooms; however, no state laws that ban discrimination in jury selection based on orientation or identity; marriage-service providers can discriminate on the basis of religion

  8. Maine

  9. Illinois

  10. Rhode Island

Something important to keep in mind is that no two people will have the same travel experience. This guide is merely a collective list to help give you an idea on places that it can be safe to travel this summer. Stay safe and happy travels.

Written by: Samantha Benjamin-Nolan


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