5 Tips for Solo Travel
There’s a travel revolution underway – well actually it’s been going on for quite some time but it seems to be much more documented these days. Gone are the days when you had to take your spouse with you on every trip you take, or compromise on where your friends or family want to go. Enter the world of solo travel.
A somewhat scary concept to beginners, but solo travel can be one of the most liberating things you do. You want to go to London? Get yourself on a plane, train or automobile and do just that! Want time to wander art galleries in Paris – travelling solo gives you all the freedom to do what you like, when you feel like it.
Now I’m not saying that taking trips with your husband, girlfriend, mum or whoever are redundant. They’re just as much fun as they’ve always been. But I am saying if you want to explore a new city but can’t find anyone who wants to go, there’s nothing to stop you going by yourself.
Sound like something you’d like to give a go? To get you started, this week I’ve been speaking to some of the web’s most influential solo travellers, and people who have done their fair share of solo travel. Here’s their advice to enjoying your first solo trip:
Travel writer Candice has been travelling the world for the last few years and offers a light-hearted account of her journey. A down to earth blog, Candice Does the World answers the questions that many solo travellers ask themselves from what to wear when dining out alone, and how to travel the world on $50 a day.
Top Solo Travel Trip: It’s really not as hard as people think it is, and I’m by no means a brave traveller. I get freaked out by everything from taking public transit to actually flying to my destination! You just have to find what works for you, even if that’s a group tour or a luxury stay. Hopping on tours is a great intro to a place.
A vibrant community open to solo travelers of the world, the Solo Traveler Blog brings together different people’s experiences and unique imagery to discuss the hows and whys of solo travel. With guest writers from all over the world this blog is wonderfully diverse and covers a vast range of destinations.
Top Solo Travel Tip: The number one tip is to start small. Four or five days is long enough to get nervous and get over any nerves about being alone. London is a great place to start to go solo as it’s a city that is alive and active at all times of day. And there’s plenty to do that’s not expensive.
Travel blogging since 2009, Monica is the British based Travel Hack. Topics range from the practical like how to choose your destinations, and how to find cheap flights, to the more personal topics like how to maintain your relationship when only one of you travels. A thorough guide to the life of a solo traveller.
Top Solo Travel Tip: Don’t worry about what other people think. Every now and then you may get a little self conscious during your trip, but who cares what people think?! Remember you are travelling for you, no-one else, so nobody else matters. Enjoy it. Embrace it.
Inspirational imagery and personal accounts make this blog a good resource for getting inspired. Check out the many exotic and off the beaten path destinations that Polish travel blogger Marysia has visited or take one of the travel challenges from her own Bucket List.
Top Solo Travel Tip: Pack your smile and common sense. No matter if you travel in very free and relaxed Europe or more conservative parts of the world using common sense always come handy. As for smile, well, it shows your positive attitude to the culture/mentality/religion that you are discovering and always go very long way.
Cities in particular can be quite daunting to first time visitors, especially if you’re travelling by yourself. Choose your accommodation wisely. Remember this is going to be where you rest your head and spend most of your time after dark. You may feel more comfortable choosing a hotel or apartment with its own 24 hr reception for example.
If you haven’t tried one already, serviced apartments can be a great option for solo travellers as you can feel much more at home and not cooped up in a small hotel room. With your own kitchen facilities you’re able to make your own breakfast and dinner if you prefer not to have to ask for a table for 1 in city restaurants, or if you just prefer to keep a bit of a routine to stop you getting home sick!