No matter where you’re headed – whether to a small country cottage, the blinding lights of a big city, or an exotic locale – the first question you will ask yourself is ‘Who’s going?’ Even if you are in a relationship or have a family, it’s becoming more and more commonplace to take a journey all to and for yourself. A great way to recharge the batteries and get away from it all.
Is it Right For Me?
Your personality will say a lot about whether you are the type who will enjoy travelling alone, but considering your destination will also be a factor. You might be someone whose idea of getting away from it all really means not seeing any other people around, in which case a more nature-focused vacation will be perfect for you. On the other hand, you might be the type who loves to mix it up with others, and travelling alone really just means that you will head just about anywhere – big city or a posh beach resort – and make a point of chatting it up with strangers who might just become friends. By reaching out, you might find the best places off the beaten path in the French countryside, or find someone in London who can escort you to the local hotspots without popular reviews yet.
Solo travel really can be for anyone, depending on what kind of trip you are looking to make. It should bear noting, then that if you are the sort that doesn’t socialize easily, you might end up feeling a bit overwhelmed visiting a big name landmark like Barcelona or Amsterdam if you don’t know anyone there. Likewise, if you are the sort that brings the party with you, getting among the forests and trees might have you out of your element. Trying these new experiences are valuable, but certainly adds a challenging aspect to a vacation, rather than a relaxing one.
The Advantages of Travelling By Yourself
First and foremost, you are completely in control of the vacation from start to finish. There doesn’t have to be anything in terms of where to stay, when to wake up, what’s on the menu for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and what you do for fun in between those meals. In some ways, that might be daunting at first, as it’s a lot of planning that suddenly isn’t divided between your mates. Fortunately, there are travel packages and all-inclusive trips that can make all these decisions easier, so here’s what to consider if you want to make this sort of vacation work:</a>
Event Planning Ahead Of Time Is Much Easier
Once again, you don’t have to run any questions by others, and you don’t have to bend over backward to make the schedules work. When you are ready and available to travel, that’s when you book for. Also, since certain places are better to visit at certain times of the year, this flexibility in planning means you might be able to line up vacations you never would have been able to do otherwise.
Whether getting in a car for the big drive or heading to the airport, being able to pack for you alone is a good way to start your vacation.
Trying Something New
If it’s your first time travelling solo, a great way to make a memorable event is to plan something that you doubt you would have ever tried, even if you travelled to your destination with friends and family. Trying something wild – such as bungee jumping – is definitely a way to get your heart pounding, but even going to a restaurant that serves something unique can be another great example.
Meeting Other Solo Travellers
One thing you will find on your journey is that you are certainly not alone. Many people who vacationed alone have fallen in love with it. For many, it is a way that gently forces them into meeting up with new people, and ‘travel talk’ has always been the icebreaker of the socially awkward.
One of the reasons many people don’t consider solo travel is because of the concern they have of what might happen if they are alone in an unfamiliar place. While it has become much safer to travel across a lot more of the planet than it used to be, a bit of common sense can go a long way if you’re the only one making the trek.
First of all, make sure people know you are travelling! You don’t have to make an exact itinerary before you leave and give it to your friends so they know where you are at all times, but even saying where you’re going and for how long can help (although if you are the social media type, maybe everyone you’ve ever befriended will soon know exactly where you are when you post yourself smiling with a drink in your hand).
Whether travelling to big cities or rural areas, travelling alone can make you more of a target for muggings or scams. It’s good to do a bit of reading before you go, and looking over a map ahead of time, not just staring at your phone as you walk a path you’ve never looked at before. Obviously staying around friendly-looking tourist-type crowds once the sun sets is important (even if you’ve tried all day to avoid them). If you do run into some trouble, always keep in mind where your country consulate or embassy is, and have their number handy.