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Passport Bros: The Reality of Medellin

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Synopsis: Exploring the “Passport Bros” movement, this article examines why some Western men seek love abroad, disillusioned by dating at home. It highlights personal stories and the darker aspects of the trend, including cultural disrespect and exploitation.

I always try my best to keep these short, but this article will definitely not be short. This is a very sensitive subject to many who travel and live abroad. I’m speaking of course about the “Passport Bro’s” movement. 

Why are Men Going Abroad for Love?

I reached out to the unofficial leaders of this movement, who preferred to remain anonymous, and their message is that Western men are tired of the materialism and unrealistic expectations of Western women on them as mates. The main sentiment I got back was that single Western women are allowed to have preferences, but Western men are not. Most of the men’s preferences have been labeled as “creepy”, “problematic” or just give women “the ick” – which is a new term to me. It means that something is gross that another person does, like picking their nose on a date or something similar.

So what are average men to do? In Western society, there is nothing worse than being called average. So even good men who don’t focus their lives on something that vapid society deems as outstanding, fall into being labeled average. This limits their ability to find a mate in post-social media culture. One such man, I will call “Ted”. Ted is a 38-year-old man from Los Angeles, he has a great job in the entertainment industry and has been single since 2015. Though he had been on several dates all of which had ended unsuccessfully to differing degrees. He recounted some of the worst dates he had been on, and I was shocked at the audacity of women that he had been out with. 

There were several that said they just wanted to have a free dinner and a conversation with someone new but had no intention of dating him. A few even admitted to having boyfriends and one said she was going to bring her leftovers home to her boyfriend. As shocking as this is, the bulk of his failed dates ended for one reason, Ted doesn’t possess all four of the “6’s” that many women require. This is: the man must be 6 feet tall, have a 6-figure salary, a 6” penis and a 6-pack. If you are missing one of these, “Tell that fat, broke, midget – boy, bye” (direct quote from a wildly popular female “Dating guru” from TikTok). 

Are these unrealistic standards? That isn’t for me to decide, however, Ted is only 5’7”, so he is immediately cast away as undesirable by an overwhelming majority of single women. I know he makes a good living but the others, I’m not going to speculate on. He is a clean person, takes care of himself, and I’ve known him for years. He’s a salt-of-the-earth guy with a sense of humor and has hobbies he’s passionate about. On the surface, he is what all women say they want, but his experiences tell a different story. 

So Ted did the unthinkable, he gave up. He just quit dating. This is an all too common theme in dating for men recently. He told me that many of his friends told him to not give up, there are alot of fish in the sea, just keep trying. But the more he went on dates where women were outwardly indignant with him, admitting to only going out with him because he has a good job, he started to get jaded and that colored the effort he put in on the dates. He felt it was better to just stop going out on dates and focus on himself. During this time, he felt his mental health improve dramatically, but he couldn’t shake that feeling of loneliness he felt. 

The Pendulum Always Swings

He said he knew he wasn’t alone in this, and did what many do, he turned to YouTube and TikTok to find a community. This is where he first came across the terms “Redpill” and “Passport Bro”. It started with a wildly popular podcast/YouTube show called “Fresh and Fit”, which follows a popular format on YouTube – they invite a panel of men and women on polar opposite ends of the spectrum, and let them argue. It is an interesting dynamic to watch, you will see the men and women get very defensive and into a binary team thought mentality.

Neither the men or women they invite on are the best examples of those in the dating world. They are based in Miami, and the women they invite are women who frequent clubs and post “Spicy content” for sale online. The men are typically men who are part of the “Red Pill” movement, this is where men focus on hypermasculine traits. The one thing that the men that they invite on have in common is that they can articulate themselves better than the women guests. This creates the impression that these men and their movement are mentally superior to women. This speaks directly to a growing number of men who feel lonely and cast away by women as unworthy partners. It also makes the women look vapid and materialistic. The common theme from the female guests is that they make 5 to 6 figures monthly selling pictures and videos online, if a man makes less he is a bum in their eyes. After watching their videos, I can see that this is the dynamic that they are going for. 

The popularity of these panel shows has created a bad feedback loop for men like Ted. After binging these shows, he found a group that preaches that men are superior to women and that Western women are hypersexualized, money hungry and always looking for the bigger and better wallet. He admitted that if he found a partner he feared she would always be looking for a man who had more, thus never having a healthy relationship. It was at this point he found a popular travel podcast. 

This podcast was dedicated to men like Ted who felt increasingly disenfranchised by dating in modern society. These men state that they feel that Western society no longer shares their core values; online dating sites like Tinder, Hinge, and Bumble are overwhelmingly centered around hookup culture. With the emergence of TikTok, Instagram, and Snapchat, there are no longer relationships that are faithful. These men feel, correctly so, that all a woman has to do is to post a cryptic message about how she feels underappreciated by her significant other, and her DMs will fill with thirsty men who are more than happy to undermine their relationship for a chance at sex with the woman. 

So what is their solution? Give up on dating and never seek female companionship? Stop dating women altogether? No, their solution is to stop dating Western women. Get yourself a passport and go to another country to find your partner. This is the core principle of the Passport Bros movement. 

You’ve Got a Passport, Now What?

According to another popular YouTuber who chose to remain anonymous, “The problem is not with women, it’s with society at large. We have a generation of girls who have been told their whole lives that settling down is the same as settling, and they are too pretty, strong, and independent to just settle for a bum-ass man. So, they are unrealistic in their desires, and it alienates them from the dating pool. If you ask the majority of female college students and college graduates what the average income is for a man in the United States, they seem to think the minimum wage works out to $100k/year. Anything less and the man is a bum, when in reality the average salary in the US is under half that.” 

This has led men who aren’t making this magic number of $100,000 yearly to start taking their money elsewhere and going where their salary makes them one of the wealthier people in the area. With more companies being open to remote workers and dating applications having a “Travelling” setting, it has leveled the playing field for men like Ted. 

After many long text threads with me, Ted decided to come to Colombia to find his next partner. His next stop was to Medellin, and this was what more the speed of what he wanted. Medellin is a city well known for its nightlife and beautiful women. Finding dates was no issue for Ted in Medellin, when he landed at Rionegro Airport, he started swiping on beautiful women, and by the time he checked into his Airbnb, he had 6 dates set up. He doesn’t have a strong command of Spanish, so he used Google Translate to communicate with his prospective dates. 

He went out on dates and didn’t find what he was looking for until his last planned night in Medellin, he went to a language exchange party in the popular Laureles neighborhood and met Maria Camila. Even though there was a bit of a language barrier, they hit it off well and he stayed another week spending time with her and getting to know each other. In June 2023, they got married and she is in the process of moving to the US to be with him. On the surface, this is exactly what the Passport Bros movement is all about. Ted and Maria Camila are a success story that should be plastered all over everything that Passport Bros are using to promote their movement, but it’s not. As with every community on the internet, there is a deeper and darker force at play here.

Ominous Undertones

While this reality worked out well for this couple, it is not what this movement has morphed into. Ted is a man with a pure heart, and Maria Camila is as well. They want the same thing, a stable partnership where they can build a foundation together. Sadly what started out as an alternative to dating has turned into an excuse for Western men to act terribly abroad, and have little consequences for their actions. 

Right after the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting quarantine, passport bros targeted 3 countries as the places they would go to – Thailand, The Philippines, and Colombia. As the momentum of this movement grew, it attracted the attention of lonely Western men, who had grown tired of being told no. The undercurrent, which nobody wants to admit publicly, is that the men who inhabit this movement now feel entitled to women from these countries. They feel that their passport entitles them to all of their fantasies being fulfilled because these women should be honored that a Western man would want them. Even though these women are gorgeous, well-educated, and have an abundance of positive qualities, they did all of this in a third-world country, and these Western men feel that they hold their ticket to the good life. 

Thanks to the reputation of Medellin in large part due to the homicidal madman, Pablo Escobar, and the glorification of his reign of terror on Colombia thanks to the Netflix series Narcos, many passport bros flock to Medellin in search of adventure, women, and of course, cocaine. Many of these terrible people think this is all Colombia is good for. They will say cop-out statements like “I’m going to see the culture, history, people and climate of Medellin” which is code for parties, women and drugs. 

I want to state clearly here, that this is not all men coming here. There are many who are here for different reasons, but the overwhelming majority of tourists coming to Medellin now are coming for this reason. If you want to see this in action, I implore you to find the gate of a flight to Medellin in either major hub – Miami, Houston or Panama City, and eavesdrop on the conversations of the groups of male tourists who randomly form to talk about their plans on their trip. They will be easy to point out, look for the men in shorts, flip-flops/slides (bonus points for socks too), ratty t-shirts, and backward baseball caps. 

They’ll always start by feeling out their new friends, by talking about going on coffee tours, or maybe even a Pablo Escobar tour, and once one of them feels emboldened, they will steer the conversation to women. You can feel a sense of relief wash over them as they feel as if they’re in a safe space. Once they do, you will be shocked at how fast they turn the conversation to share the research they found on prostitutes, brothels, how to acquire cocaine and 2CB (better known as Tussi), and bars or clubs to find women. It gets very dark alarmingly fast. 

By the time these men land, they feel that all of their fantasies are about to come true, and why not? They’re a man, a man from a superior country. These girls should be auditioning for them. Right? When they go to collect their bags, the women working average jobs here are gorgeous and nice. This inflates their ego and makes them oblivious to the danger they are stepping into. When you are on vacation mode, it’s a time you are more likely to let your guard down, and if you let this happen with a false sense of superiority and often a language barrier, the results can and have been deadly.

Local Sentiment

For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction, and the tourism industry in Medellin has begrudgingly steered into this trend. It doesn’t make them happy to see their city becoming a hedonistic playground for the Western world, but they are adapting to it. While this has caused uncontrolled gentrification with real estate in the Laureles and El Poblado neighborhoods being a Colombian gold rush, it has also brought out the worst of Colombian society. The amount of foreign investment in high-end real estate has been nothing short of extreme price gouging, with everyone wanting to get in early on having an AirBnB money printer. This has driven many Colombians out of these areas, with gentrification radiating outwards, causing the cost of living to spike. 

The Dangers of Paradise

Another much darker element is the people who are preying on the inattentiveness of these tourists. Medellin is a city where you don’t have to look for trouble, it will find you if you’re not careful, yet passport bros are out looking for it. Looking for unrealistic dates on Tinder, emboldened by their unrealistic sense of superiority, looking for prostitutes because some forum on Facebook told them that prostitution is legal, or the age of consent is 14. Or that they can legally carry 1 gram of cocaine or marijuana on them legally here. For the record Prostitution is decriminalized, the age of consent for sex is 18 and if you get caught with cocaine on you, it will not end well. 

Passport Bros are routinely getting drugged and robbed with Scopolamine here, which is maybe one of the scariest things you can have happen. I’ll address this in a future article in depth.

While I’m not victim blaming, I will say this, if you are a Passport Bro and come to Medellin because you think your morals don’t apply here and then you get drugged because you put yourself in a bad situation, you did that to yourself. I have no sympathy for those who go out looking for trouble, find it then cry about the consequences of their actions. Should people be drugging others? No. Not at all, but should people be out looking for drugs and sex because they think they’re entitled to it? No, as well. 

I’m not taking sides in this social conflict. There is a large swath of influencers online that want to label these men as creeps, losers, and weak because they have to resort to going to (their words) “poor, uneducated countries” to find women. I agree with the sentiment that society has moved away from being family-oriented into a selfish and materialistic place. People are so concerned with internet clout that they lose sight of what is truly important; connections and being a part of something bigger than themselves.

With that being said, I do think that the men who come here to just look for cheap and easy sex and to exploit a terrible economic situation are disgusting. I was just at one of my favorite restaurants waiting for a friend and overheard 3 men from Miami talking about their sexual exploits from the night before, and it was the first time it made me feel “the ick”. The way these adult men were talking about the women from the night before, was on a level of disrespect I have never heard. 

There are many people who call Medellin home and aren’t here for a hedonistic escape from their reality. They are here to build a better life for themselves, and the ones who are coming here to live a sexual or narco fantasy are making it difficult for those of us who live here. The public perception is that people are less like Ted, and more like Chad, Tyrone, and Brad who are here to party it up. It’s building a real resentment in the Colombian people towards tourists. When a tourist gets drugged and robbed here, the locals have little sympathy.

I’m not asking tourists to not have fun here, but I’m asking them to do so legally. The laws here are incredibly liberal, so you have so much leeway so there is no reason to do illegal things here. But most importantly respect the culture and the people here. You are not superior to anyone just because you were born on a specific patch of dirt. If you are not careful you will be humbled here. Till next time. 

2 Responses

  1. Thank you for writing the ‘Passport Bros: The Reality of Medellin’ article. As a 60 year old single man from the United States, I am studying the best ways to introduce myself to a few women from a non-Westernized society. Of course, Colombia is one of the popular destinations that are mentioned in the ‘Passport Bro’ realm. Is it true that the culture of Colombia has a female populous that hasn’t been damaged by activist feminism? I’m curious to learn your opinion as to a city/town in Colombia that may be a better fit for a man like me to visit. I have no interest in the ‘party’ lifestyle, and seek to meet a woman that may be interested in a healthy relationship. I am more interested in art galleries, painting, motorcycling, hiking, flying, or hanging out at a beach, than partying at a club. I am not interested in temporary flings with party girls, I’m looking to meet a woman that has heart, is more calm in her demeanor, and interested to meet an older man that she can share interests with. I am considering more organic ways to meet an appropriate woman, such as attending some painting or yoga classes during a visit. Thank you for your time. 🙂

    1. Hi Jeff,

      Thank you for reaching out. As part of my 4-part dating series, the last one is a wrap-up and how to pursue a relationship with a quality partner and some strategies for this. This will be some ways to meet someone organically as well as with intention. There are plenty of high value partners here that are equally ready to meet someone real. Stay tuned!

      Steve

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