What Sex Is Like When You're Traveling

by Emma McGowan

I’ve always had a more relaxed attitude toward sex than most of my friends and it wasn’t until I moved to Argentina on my own that I met a lot of other young women who were totally down with having casual sex. Now, granted, Buenos Aires is a city that’s particularly conducive to hooking up: the constant night life and proclivity to infidelity of many porteños (as Buenos Aires natives are called) means that there are ample chances for sleeping around. However, I also realized during my time as a single lady in a country that wasn’t my own that there’s something about traveling that makes people — and women especially — more open about sex. Whether they’re “quietly” banging in a hostel bed or checking out a sex club in a city on the other side of the world, people love to get it on when they’re far from home.

I have a couple of theories about why this is. When you’re abroad, you’re not only far away from everyone who you think will judge you for being a “slut” (and whose opinions you care about) but you’re also in a place where everything is new and exciting. You learn really quickly when you arrive in a new country that it’s a good idea to say “yes” to pretty much everything: “yes” to invitations to hang out, “yes” to new events, and “yes” to potential lovers. You’re in an exploring mood and oftentimes (especially if you’re young and single), that means exploring other people’s bodies too.

Some of my best and worst sexual experiences happened while traveling, including the first time my now-partner, Ben, saw me naked. We’d hung out a few times in our coastal town in Chile and one night my roommate and I went out to the bars with him and his roommate. Too drunk to make it back to our remote eco-village at the end of the night, I asked if we could crash at their place. Ben said yes and when we got there, he led me right to his room.

“Oh,” I remember thinking. “I guess that’s where this night is going.” I didn’t know yet that Ben is one of those guys that has lots of female friends — including friends he’d platonically spend the night with — and in the minute he took to turn around to get me a t-shirt and shorts to sleep in, I managed to strip completely naked. When he faced me again I yelled, “No, no! Don’t look!”

Being a gentleman, he immediately spun back around and covered his eyes, yelling, “I’m not looking! I’m not looking!” My response?

“Actually, no,” I said. “Look.”

He turned around to me, naked as a jaybird, standing with my hands on my hips and a smug, self-satisfied smile on my face. Ben took in the view, swallowed his Adam’s apple, and managed to get me into that t-shirt and shorts. We made out a little bit and then fell asleep together. The next morning I kissed him and asked him to go on a "real date, like grown-ups" with me. He said yes and the rest, as they say, is history.

Wanna hear more sex stories of ladies abroad? Check out these five that I gathered from my fellow globetrotting friends.

1. Carmelita, 35

W Hotel - Hong Kong. Roof top pool party with Hong Kong high society. Fancy dress. Lots of champagne. Two Italian men took me out afterward. Had sex with both of them together that night. Woke up to the best fingering orgasm of my life.

2. Candy, 32

I got off the bus from Roma in the Almafi Coast with my sister and as soon as the bus pulled away I hear a “Ciao, bella!” from across the road. A competent Italian looking young man waved at us and asked us if he could buy us a beer. As I was about to say “No thanks,” my usual response to unsolicited advances, my sister dragged me across and loudly declared that we'd LOVE a drink.

The next couple of days consisted of being taken to the yummiest restaurants, joining a magical celebration of the Black Madonna beneath the sea, full moon overhead, piano playing in the beach, wine in hand, and more gorgeousness.

Of course I decided to sleep with him despite him not really being my type. He'd shown me a good time so far, right?! So, back at his one night we get down to business, only for me to discover he had the smallest dick ever. Micropenis.

3. Rachael

I was helping my parents with a project in Jamaica, and they put me up in a resort-type place. There was a nightclub on the premises, and I went out each night by myself. There were quite a few destination weddings, and on the first night, this guy, a groom-to-be in three days time, approached me. He seemed to be half-joking, wanting to have sex in the bathroom of the club. But after three nights of this "joking," the night before his wedding, he offered to pay me whatever I wanted to have sex with him. His fiancé was back in their room, resting up for the big day. I told him that he should be ashamed of himself.

4. Jane, 29

I was traveling in Europe on my own when I was 19 and I arrived in Rome in the early, early morning. I traipsed around the city for a couple of hours until check-in time at my hostel, after which I promptly passed out. I woke up to dorm room full of annoying American sorority girls and one very, very handsome young American man. We started chatting and a little later after I’d browsed my Lonely Planet for a while he said, “So, did you find somewhere for us to eat?” I was impressed my self-assuredness and his boyish good looks, so I let him come to dinner with me.

We shared an amazingly cliche Italian dinner — checkered tablecloth, noisy Italians, and cold Chianti — and then wandered the nearly-deserted city in the dark. We bought another bottle of wine, drank it on the Spanish Steps, and after he finally kissed me, I told him there was no way I’d be having sex with him that night.

Weelllll, that ended up being untrue. We stumbled upon an amazing, secret hidden garden across from our hostel and we f*cked in the gravel. The rest of my trip was with him by my side — in Florence and on train rides through the countryside — until he left me, heartbroken, in Milan.

5. Claire, 27

I met this amazingly hot Colombian guy in a class I was taking in Buenos Aires. He kept asking me out, but my Spanish wasn't good enough to catch most of what he was saying in his thick accent. He finally got me to agree by offering to make me Colombian hot chocolate.

From the first night he came over, it was instant, explosive chemistry — even if we didn't always understand each other with words, we made up for it in other ways. At the time, I was living in an apartment which was directly above the building manager's. He had always really liked my roommate and I as tenants, but shortly after meeting my guy, he started complaining nonstop about noise. That's weird, we thought, it's not like we play loud music or anything. The manager wouldn't give us any specifics, but was very upset. It took my guy and I a few weeks to figure out that our raucous lovemaking was moving the bed so much that it was reverberating through the floor and into the manager's home. And let me tell you, it was multiple times per day! No wonder he was pissed! Needless to say, we ended up moving to a ground-floor apartment in another building. To this day, I insist on living on the first floor — it's just better for everyone.

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