Whether you're part of a couple or Solo as a beer pong cup, traveling with your girlfriends can be an incredibly fun way to see the world or just relax for a weekend. After all, your boyfriend isn't primed to help you determine whether that uncomfortably cute coworker is flirting with you, and do you really want to get Brazilianed while your life partner is lying on the next table? Of course not. That's what your girls are for.
Girlfriend getaways are nothing new, so why do people give us sadface when they hear we're not bound for some far-flung romantic island with our significant other, but a wine-inspired weekend with our best women? Clearly, these codependents have no idea the fun (and trouble) women can get into when left to our own devices. But Korbel does, so they're sending one lucky bubbly baroness and five of her friends on a Champagne Brunch Getaway to wine country. Need more incentive than that to get away sans-man (yeah right)? Here are some of the many benefits of dedicated girl-time:
Whether you decide to Thelma-and-Louise it and vacation as a twosome or gather a group for a bachelorette-style getaway, hanging out with other women releases oxytocin — the same hormone that floods your body during massages, childbirth, and other warm, feel-good moments. It facilitates bonding, which chills you out and lowers your stress levels.
If you're a high-maintenance type who can't leave home without a trunk full of hair extensions and chicken cutlets, tensions may rise when traveling with your low-key, five-second-shower friends. But before you fight it out for shower time like privileged housewives, try to embrace your differences. Instead of insisting on applying a full face of makeup before hitting the beach, ask your hemp-wearing, "What's a BB cream?" bestie to share her homemade sea salt spray with you. Maybe you're a champagne purist who can learn to embrace the fact that your weekend roommate can mix a mean French 75. And if you're excessively frugal, you could ask your spendthrift sister to help you loosen your purse strings a little bit (at least enough to actually enjoy your trip). Don't forget to share your tricks, too! "Different" doesn't translate to wrong, and you may pick up a newfound love for oil pulling. Just remember — no drink tossing or face slapping.
Good buddies aren't just a good time: scientists have discovered that friendships — female friendships in particular — can actually help you live longer. A study out of the Centre for Ageing Studies at Flinders University found that people who had large networks of friends outlived lone-wolf types by 22%. Not only that, but breast cancer patients with supportive social groups lived twice as long as those without. So if your husband doesn't want to wind up a widower, he'd best stop giving you a hard time about that weekend in Vegas with the girls.
Maybe you're part of an ambitious group of friends who don't feel complete until they've run a marathon and done three hours of hot yoga topped off with some Pilates. Or perhaps you're more of a sloth-like traveler, preferring nothing to a cool cocktail and a good book by the pool. The good news is merely spending time with friends has similar health benefits to going for a run or working out — so either way you roll, you win!
If you're shacked up with a partner and/or family at home, these rare, friend-only vacations are a chance to put yourself first for a change. No kiddie theme parks on the itinerary, no diaper pit stops, no debates over whose turn it is to cook dinner. The same goes for the unattached: you've earned a break from swiping left, so don't spend the whole trip trawling for tail. While flings might be your vacation staple, a girlfriend getaway is a great opportunity to forget that Tinder exists for a weekend. After all, who needs a hookup when you can drink champagne and freely discuss your cycle?
Image by Jake Inferrera.