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US female set to be ‘fastest person to travel to all 196 countries’

Gianna Francesca Catolico

Inquirer.net/Asia News Network

 /  Fri, November 11, 2016  /  04:34 pm
US female set to be ‘fastest person to travel to all 196 countries’

According to her website, Cassandra de Pecol's odyssey began when she left her home in Connecticut, USA, and flew to the Pacific island of Palau. (instagram.com/expedition_196/File)

Introducing Cassandra de Pecol, the first female backpacker set to visit all 196 countries in the world. She is vying to be the “fastest person to travel to all 196 nations in less than 3 years and 3 months” and the youngest female to sojourn the whole planet on a low-key budget.

According to her website, de Pecol’s odyssey began when she left her home in Connecticut, USA, and flew to the Pacific island of Palau. Since, then she took off to the Middle East, Europe and Africa to fill up her passport with hundreds of stamps.

For 16 months, the 27-year-old spent $200,000 (P9.7 million) including for 254 international plane tickets and her daily expenses for two to five days per country. So far, she has stepped foot on 180 nations and is completing 16 more countries within this year.

(Read also: Different cultural insights in Bali's Tenganan village)

To ease her financial woes, she acquires sponsorships from various restaurants and high-end hotels. In return, she has to advertise them on her diverse social media accounts such as her Instagram handle.

Although the jet setter dreamt of traveling ever since she was a child, De Pecol travels for a cause. She is currently an acting ambassador for the International Institute of Peace through Tourism and is collecting water samples from all countries for Adventurers and Scientists for Conservation.

“Since school, I’ve had this desire to visit every country in the world, intrigued to learn more about every culture, natural habitat and religion,” she told Daily Mail. “In America, we are lucky to have such a vast melting pot of cultures and people from all over the world who make the country what it is today."

She is currently in New York City prepping up her travel documents so she can journey the remaining 16 countries in approximately six weeks.

If she succeeds in her pilgrimage, she will outshine British filmmaker and explorer Graham Hughes, who traveled to all 196 countries in less than four years without hitching on an aircraft.

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This article appeared on the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper website, which is a member of Asia News Network and a media partner of The Jakarta Post