If you’ve ever scrolled through travel photos on Instagram you’ve probably seen the #passionpassport tag. This community of travelers, storytellers and creatives is almost 800,000 strong on social media and the ultimate source for wanderlust-fueling digital content. But Passion Passport wants to do more than just connect people online. The company offers a quarterly travel grant called “The Bucket List Initiative” and plans immersive travel experiences like their 2015 train trip Passport Express.
This month, they’ve launched a new project targeting the would-be traveler who doesn’t even have a passport yet.
The Passport Project invites you to pick a stigmatized destination you’d like to visit (someplace people talk smack about) and nominate a travel partner who is currently without a passport. The winners will “embark on a journey of understanding and compassion, and will share their experiences before, during, and after their trip with the rest of our community.” While the travel grant is open to people from anywhere in the world, the project’s “Building Bridges, Not Walls” message is a clear call to action for Americans to come together.
In a time when “fear of the other” is at an all-time high and 64% of Americans don’t have a passport, the company believes more than ever in the power of travel to unify. In the words of their founder Zach Houghton, “Having a passport is powerful. We want more people to have them and the experiences they can bring.”
This week we connected with Zach about Passion Passport’s new project and his own experiences as an avid traveler.