TRAVEL, BUSINESS & PEOPLE …are at the core of who I am!
I was born in Canada and I grew up in Nigeria, South Africa and England before moving to New York to study business economics and Marketing at NYU Stern business school. My experiences with the wide array of cultures and the challenges that emerged from constant change growing up, shaped a woman today whose greatest assets are adaptability, risk taking and open mindedness .
I am dedicated to building businesses that solve problems, particularly focusing on the things I am passionate about. This is exactly why I started my first company, Chidi Ashley Travels – a globally based business which promises to provide authentic, stress-free bucket list experiences to travelers. I went from working a 9-5 as a business analyst at a tech company in New York to turning my passion for travel into a multi 7 figure business, and making this “traveling” thing I loved to do as a hobby, a full on reality so that I never have to settle for a life that doesn’t feel exciting everyday!
Today, I am based in Bali and Dubai while traveling the world on my own terms and running my businesses remotely with a global team that is redefining the traditional workplace
Where are you based?
I moved from New York to Bali in February 2019 and I haven’t looked back since then! I am currently based in Bali, Indonesia while traveling full time.
What is your professional background?
I studied business economics & marketing at NYU Stern business school and began my career as a business analyst for a tech company in New York. Much of my previous work revolved around collecting and analyzing data, making recommendations based on data analysis and working with various stakeholders for implementation.
I transitioned from working as an analyst to starting and running my own travel experiences company!
Business advice for someone looking to get started
Ask yourself what’s the best that could happen! I always say this because we are trained to worry about everything that can go wrong. What drove me to start and pursue my business idea was visualizing everything good that could happen as a result of simply starting. From financial independence to location independence, feeling fulfilled when I wake up every morning and most importantly making an impact on the world around me. Sometimes we spend so much time searching for a sign but If you can’t stop thinking about it – you have all the answers you need.
Tips for solo travelers
Get comfortable with your own company – I know solo travel can feel scary initially, hell, I still question myself sometimes but it is such an empowering feeling to be able to live life without waiting on anyone to come with you. Be enough for yourself, traveling solo made me the person I am today.
It made me confident in myself, It made me confront the parts of myself that needed validation or the comfort of others, it made me boss up and take charge of all aspects of my life and most importantly it gave me the space and time to figure out who I truly am.
How did you believe in yourself and your journey when the road wasn’t certain?
I have certainly chosen an unconventional path, however my advice would be to define what success means to you and then reject everything that doesn’t align with that! I spent a lot of time figuring out what success and true happiness means to me and that is what keeps me going. I don’t feel the need to conform to social norms or have a typical life. Financial freedom and location independence are 2 of my non-negotiables in life so every project I pursue helps me to take a steps towards that and I am very comfortable with taking risks in my personal life and in business.
What made you start traveling?
My love for travel really started in my junior year of college, when the realities of the corporate world beyond school life started to creep in. I realized I wanted to make the most of the time and the freedom I had to take risks before I would eventually graduate and be stuck in a boring job. I began to seize every opportunity I had to create new memories and challenge myself with a new experiences. From scenic road trips with friends to spontaneous flights, delving into countries of which I had little prior knowledge. I used whatever money I had at the time to travel and I made it a point to go even if no one else would come with me!
What inspired you to start your travel business?
“I was never going to go if i waited for someone to come with me”
I started Chidi Ashley Travels bring people together who shared a love for travel, I noticed that I kept holding myself back from traveling and having incredible experiences because I wanted to go with someone. I didn’t initially plan to start a travel business but in December 2018 I wanted to visit Bali again but none of my friends were able to come with me, so I threw together a list of things I wanted to do, created an itinerary and I posted it on my instagram inviting anyone who was interested to join me. I got over 200 responses within 3 hours and I was like Wow! I never have to travel alone again.
The business came about in recognizing that there was a shared desire to find community and connect other travelers so I began to use my personal travel experiences and connections to curate trips for other people. Since then we have grown into a full service travel company – we not only create a safe space for women to travel but we also curate trips for friends, families, couples and so much more.
Where do you hang out most?
Find me on Instagram where I post multiple times a week! I also post content on Youtube once a week which covers the behind the scenes and in depth look into my travels, businesses and more.