5 Minutes With Rachel Rudwall

For McCool Travel’s 90th travel interview, I am excited to present Rachel Rudwall. As with most of my interview subjects, I first “met” Rachel on Twitter. She operates a beautiful website, Rachel Roams, and has a massive social media following. Oh yeah, she is also a television personality. If you have not already seen Vacation Chasers, with her friend Andrea Feczko, set your DVR or catch it online. They are funny and entertaining, along with being creative and well-traveled.
Rachel’s bio:
“Rachel has traveled six continents, lived in three countries, and journeyed through 50+ nations. As TV Host, Producer, EMMY-Nominated Camera Operator, Photographer, and Writer, Rachel regularly drops herself into faraway lands to relate their stories to outsiders. Rachel has had countless global adventures, ranging from work as TV host for HLN‘s travel series Vacation Chasers, to digital host for brands like Travel Channel and MSN, and from brand ambassador for women’s fitness company Athleta, to producer on top-rated shows like Storage Wars, Ice Road Truckers, and Ax Men. Rachel also hosts, produces, and edits digital travel series How 2 Travelers (H2T), in which she and co-host Andrea Feczko release a weekly video sharing tips and tales from their travels.”

Rachel Rudwall photo
Rachel Rudwall

Rachel Rudwall

Hometown…
Dayton, Ohio
Always in my luggage…
I always pack ear plugs, my Robdechi Hybrid Scarf (which is part scarf, part inflatable neck cushion, part eye shade), a couple GoPros, my Canon 7D, granola bars (because no one likes a hangry traveler), headphones, and workout clothes (… whether or not I actually use the workout clothes on every trip is a different story).

Rachel Rudwall photo
Rachel Rudwall

3 favorite home-away-from-home places…

  1. Joshua Tree, California for its natural beauty and deafening quiet.
  2. Portland, Oregon for its creativity and delectable food scene.
  3. Ohio for family time and Marion’s pizza.

A favorite travel memory is…
Summiting Tanzania’s Mount Kilimanjaro in February! After six full days of trekking along the mountain’s Lemosho Route, my group began its summit push at 11:30 PM on a Saturday evening. We spent seven hours ascending through the darkest and coldest hours of the night, and reached the 19,341′ peak to find a 360-degree sunrise over Tanzania and Kenya’s plains, glaciers, and clouds. All eleven of our group members made it to the top, which made our success all the sweeter!

Rachel Rudwall photo
Rachel Rudwall

3 favorite travel brands…

  1. REI
  2. Airbnb
  3. Virgin

3 money-saving travel tactics I use are…

  1. book hotels on Booking.com to ensure that any itinerary changes won’t result in change fees.
  2. I use my Capital One Venture and Chase Ink credit cards on the road, as they don’t charge international transaction fees, AND I can avoid the typically high exchange fees incurred by changing cash.
  3. I eat where the locals eat, which means I spend considerably less on meals than people eating at tourist hot spots.

3 ways that I have fun while traveling are…

  1. seeking out live music
  2. dining with the locals
  3. getting outdoors!

8 word (or less) travel mantra…
Let’s go with my 10-word Life Mantra: “Everything’s either a good experience, or a good story later!”

Rachel Rudwall photo in Anguilla
Rachel Rudwall in Anguilla

Favorite non-travel website …
Thrillist. It’s a rabbit hole of entertaining stories and recommendations for adventure.
Most memorable souvenir …
My husband! I met Todd in Scotland 8 years ago, we started dating in Alaska 6 years ago, and I finally imported the fella to California a couple summers after that.
Favorite cheap eat …
Street food. Any of it. All of it!
Recent discovery …
I enjoy cigars. Thanks for the discovery, Cuba!
I am fortunate to have met …
Not only bigwigs, but also teachers, parents, astronauts, community organizers, and countless other inspirational human beings along the way.
I would like to meet …
Mike Rowe and Anthony Bourdain. Pretty please?
Rachel Rudwall photo
Rachel Rudwall


Thank you very much, Rachel, for taking the time to share your travel inspiration and tips.
Follow Rachel Rudwall on FacebookTwitter, Instagram, and Rachel Roams.


Check out McCool Travel’s previous interviews. McCool Travel presents tips from travel experts in our 5 Minutes interview series—featuring travel industry giants, super frequent travelers, and adventurous persons. Previous 5 Minutes post: Scott Eddy.


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