My name is Sara and I am the Founder of Penguino Travel. I love to explore new places – and this is something I share with my husband Mark and our four children, Asher, Micah, Zeph and Ella.
When Mark and I met in college, we both dreamed of traveling the world. We had a few adventures before our oldest son was born in 2004. We settled into corporate jobs and suburban parenthood – but never quite gave up our wanderlust.
In 2011, we traveled with our three boys – then two, four and six years old – to Uganda to adopt our daughter. Adapting to life with tiny kids in Africa was hard, but it was also transformative. We realized how strong and resilient kids could be. Since then, we have traveled with our children as much as possible! From exploring France to surfing in Morocco to snorkeling in Mexico, we’re just getting started.
With a small budget and a big family, we’ve learned how to travel like locals. We often rent an apartment, take public transportation and shop for food at local markets. Not only is this more affordable, it’s also more authentic. We’ve learned a little bit about how to make travel a life-changing experience for kids – and relaxing for the whole family.
For many years, I’ve dreamed of starting a business. The inspiration for Penguino Travel was a moment of complete exhaustion. One year ago, our family was headed to Tulum, Mexico on vacation. I finished everything on my to-do list – cleaning, shopping, packing – with no time to spare. I didn’t even have time to shower before we needed to go to the airport. I sat on the floor of my bathroom crying, wondering if I should just stay home while my family went to Mexico!
My husband convinced me to get into the car. That night as I sat on the beach and watched the sunset in Tulum, I began to wonder how I could turn my passion for travel into a business. Six months later, I resigned from my job to launch this new venture.
My first step as an entrepreneur was to talk to other moms and dads about their experiences traveling with kids. I discovered that parents across the globe share a belief that travel matters. As I listened, I realized that many moms share a feeling of responsibility. Moms feel responsible to not only make sure everyone has everything they need at every moment, but to make travel a positive and purposeful experience for their families.
I started Penguino to make travel easier for moms (and dads) – so they don’t need a vacation from their vacation!
About the Name Penguino: Our son Micah named his favorite stuffed penguin “Penguino” when he was just 2 years old. Penguino – along with Eyo, Pink and El – have joined our family on adventures to more than 10 countries.