Rosalie Atkins lives in England and has just spent her summer in Paris.
Although the girl isn’t accompanied by her parents, she’s not completely by herself. She spent time with a host family there she knows, Yahoo! reports. Eurostar, a railway connecting Paris to London, informed Rosalie’s mother — Anne Atkins — that the youngest they allow passengers to travel solo is 12-years-old. So, Rosalie traveled on British Airways Skyflyer Solo Program. The family has used the airline before, which provides a chaperone for children traveling alone.
“My mother took me to Heathrow, said goodbye and handed me over to a lady who took me to the plane. I was delivered to Jeanne and her father the other end.”
According to the in-depth report on Daily Mail, Rosalie is learning essential skills in the best way possible — by experience and exposing herself to various types of people with different cultures. In this case, Rosalie stayed with the Scribe family and enjoyed seeing the Eiffel Tower and Notre-Dame with her friend, Jeane Scribe. They went to several museums, parks, and markets.
“If I had visited with my parents, we would have seen only the touristy parts of Paris, but because I was staying with a French family I saw some far more unusual aspects.”
The 11-year-old girl reveals that traveling alone gives her the confidence.
“The experiences I’ve had mean I am quite confident when I have to talk to new people, which is a useful social skill.”
Rosalie’s parents have gotten all types of feedback about letting their daughter travel alone. Some are supportive, while others strongly disagree with their decisions. Rosalie, however, says at some point kids don’t travel with their parents.
“While a lot of children can only go places with their parents, I don’t have to rely on mine to do all the things I want to do. The way I see it, your parents aren’t going to travel with you forever. You have to learn some day, and in my opinion the sooner the better.”
Rosalie’s mother tells Daily Mail that the first time she allowed her daughter to travel alone was when she was 9-years-old. She took British Airways to Lyons in France. When Anne Atkins contacted Eurostar about having her daughter ride the train by herself, the company explained that they didn’t think it was safe she do that. Mrs. Atkins argued that a lot of children to do it and let them know that British Airways had a program for situations just like theirs.
How do you feel about the girl’s parents allowing her to travel alone?
[Image via Daily Mail]