Some people solo travel to escape their 9 to 5, get a break from reality, family or the simple difficulty in gathering friends to go away with. Whatever your reason is. I believe everyone should travel at least once in their life. Solo travelling is an exciting topic for many reasons.
So What is Solo Travel?
Solo travel is where you go somewhere alone. This can be anywhere you want. Wherever you go, you spend a significant chunk of time alone once you get to your destination. Now, as I said before, I never actually feel like I’m alone when I solo travel. And it’s real, just because you travel alone doesn’t mean you’ll always be alone during your travels. Unless you really want to be.
I absolutely adore solo travelling, but I don’t feel like I do it enough. This year I solo travelled to Singapore, Bali and Ireland. You can go wherever you like, whenever you want. It’s incredible how you are entitled to do exactly what you want when you want.
However, I do understand that booking the first solo trip can be quite a daunting experience. That is why I’m going to give you the tools to schedule your first trip with real confidence.
How to Travel With Confidence as A Solo Traveller
1. Take Baby Steps…
This is advice from someone that has travelled solo for over 5 years. Please don’t do your first solo trip thousands of miles away from home. It might be a shock to the system, and you don’t want it to go to waste. Instead, start small. I recently went to Ireland for the day. It was great and was only a 55 min flight from home. Why not go for the day by yourself ? Or even do a one-night stopover in a city close to you. It doesn’t have to be a huge jump! Make it easy and start off small.
When travelling alone, you have to feel so comfortable in your own company.
You don’t even have to actually leave your city. You could go to the park alone. Or maybe cinemas/movies. Perhaps even think about heading to a restaurant alone. Whatever you do, do something that you are comfortable with. When solo travelling, you have to feel so comfortable in your own company.
I’m someone that enjoys my own company – a little too much in fact. Travelling solo pushes, you to be by yourself most of the time, so think where you want to go first. You will always feel nervous wherever you go (I still get worried, and I’ve been going solo for five years!!) but the more you practise going sooo and test your limits the further you can go. Trust me.
2. Get yourself booked onto a tour
As cheesy as it sounds, it’s actually a good idea and a perfect way to make friends when travelling solo. When I was in Bali this year, I booked an Instagram tour.
Now if I didn’t book that tour, I would have never met another traveller and experienced another side of Bali. Going on tours and meeting with other travellers is an excellent way of sharing stories and tips, too!
3. Do a little you know research
I say this quite lightly because you can do all the research in the world and still be shocked upon arrival! I would say make sure you go with an open mind ready to learn and eager for a new experience.
4. Plan the first couple of nights’ accommodations for your solo travels
This won’t be necessary if you’re only staying for a day.
However, it is essential if you have never travelled before to book accommodation. It’s just so you know where to go upon arrival. I’ve done solo travelling and have booked my accommodation on the day to my destination. This is fine, but I wouldn’t suggest it on your first solo trip. I want you to enjoy your first solo trip, so making sure you have everything planned is key to having to a smooth experience. I would suggest booking.com and Airbnb.
5. Stay active on social media
This doesn’t apply to everyone, of course (not everyone has social media) but if you have a phone, I would suggest keeping your friends and family aware of things you are doing while travelling solo.
When I travelled solo to Las Vegas last year, I was always checking in with friends and family to let them know that I was okay.
Use socials like:
6. Carry cash and a credit card and keep your money safe – In several places
I tend to use my credit card everywhere I go. However, I do understand that this might not be an option in some areas. In Ireland and Singapore, this was and is fine. Countries like Bali or Malaysia you may want to have some cash with you – don’t carry massive amounts but enough for you to get by.
My advice to you is, only take what you need for a day’s spend, you will know what to take through lots of planning. And if you have to hide some money in several places and only carry one plastic and have one at home. Do so. Travelling solo you always need back up.
7. Present yourself with confidence hunnie when solo
After all these tools I have stated above, you should have NO problems with travelling solo. Walk with an air of confidence everywhere you go. You’ll give off a self-assured vibe, rather than a vulnerable one, and be less likely to attract unwelcome attention.
It can be hard to not look like a tourist, or a solo traveller, but never tell people where you’re staying unless you feel safe to do so. Although I was solo travelling in the States last year, I never once said to people where I was staying. In fact, I always made out that my boyfriend was at the hotel.
If you ever find yourself lost, which can be fun sometimes (not always) go into a busy local bar, a restaurant or a hotel. Worst case scenario is you will have to pay for a taxi to get you home. I’ve done this before and felt no shame about it!
Never worry about coming across as dismissive if you reject a seemingly kind local’s offers; your safety always comes first. Trust your instincts; they are your best defence.
Use these tools, and I can assure you that solo travelling will be a smooth and one to remember.
Thank you so much for having a read. If you have time, read on my other solo travel posts:
- 10 Places to Visit For the First Time Solo As A Black Female
- Indonesia Bali & Travelling Solo
- What I Learnt Travelling Solo To Vegas
- A Day with MBV in Berlin
Have you ever travelled solo? When was your last solo trip? What scares you the most if you haven’t gone solo before?