Life is too short to wait for travel partners. If you have them - great. But if you don’t, then that should not be the reason why you put your dream trips on hold.
What’s more, solo travel is still a perfectly valid option even if you do have someone to travel with. Travelling with friends, family, or a partner is an entirely different experience from solo travel. Different ways of travel satisfy different needs, so you should never cross one out.
2024 is looking great in terms of travel plans. When you get down to making a list of your dream destinations for the upcoming year, consider visiting one of them on your own. In this article, we will show you why we think you are going to love your solo travel experience.
We know this phrase is as cliché as they come. You are probably tired of hearing anything remotely related to “stepping out of your comfort zone”, “leaving your bubble”, etc.
But there is no other way to address it than simply calling a spade a spade. Solo travel is one of the best ways to help you leave your zone of comfort.
There are many challenging elements of travel. From managing flights to navigating the local customs and overcoming the language barrier, or just the fact that you’re far away from home and don’t know anyone.
The feeling of pride when you face those obstacles as a solo traveller is indescribable. And the best part is that the effects are usually long-lasting. Solo travel thrusts you so far out of your safety bubble, it is difficult to go back in afterwards.
Here is the truth: when you travel with someone, you are less likely to meet new people. This is because you already have someone next to you and are not pressed to make friends to keep you company. You feel comfortable and safe, and loneliness is not a potential issue.
Of course, some of us find it easier to meet new people when in the presence of someone we already know. Approaching a stranger in company seems less daunting than doing it alone.
But on the other hand, it is in human nature to cling to familiarity. Deciding that we don’t need to make the effort of talking to strangers because we already have someone to talk to is a risk.
Solo travel can be lonely at times - we won’t lie about that. And you would be surprised how the threat of feeling lonely emboldens even the most shy of individuals.
Don’t feel pressured to form lifelong friendships while travelling solo. It is possible, but remember that temporary relations formed for the sake of keeping each other company before parting ways are also absolutely fine.
Just go with the flow and see where it takes you - if you keep in touch with people you met during your solo trips, great. But if not, don’t beat yourself up over it. When you travel a lot, it is virtually impossible to stay connected to everyone.
When you travel solo, you don’t only meet other people; you also meet your true self.
Travelling puts us in specific conditions, which are usually very different from our everyday lives. No wonder then that who we are when travelling is also much different than who we are on the daily.
This is especially true when you travel solo. The knowledge that there is no one around watching you, that nobody around you knows what you are like, is liberating. It allows us to be ourselves - or even a new version of ourselves we have always wanted to try out but something held us back.
Additionally, solo travel comes with a lot of alone time. It provides the perfect opportunity for self-reflection. We hardly ever get a few moments to just sit and think about who we are when nobody is watching on a daily basis.
Taking some time off and spending it by yourself in a foreign place is a rare chance to do just that. Your travelling persona may turn out to be a completely new version of yourself - get to know this person and embrace him or her. We promise you will be positively surprised.
Have you ever made plans to go out but ended up staying in and watching Netflix?
Yeah. Me too.
Incidentally, this happens to me more often when I have company than when I’m by myself. When there is someone to hang out with, I just don’t feel so pressured to leave the house and do something fun.
After all, I will be bored on my own, but if there is somebody right there, we can always chat or play a game.
Solo travel is meant to be an unforgettable experience. I guarantee you won’t feel right sitting by yourself for too long. FOMO will find its way in. You know it always does.
So, you will start searching for things to do. Depending on what you’re in the mood for, you may sign up for a guided tour, drop by a language café, or just stroll around the city.
Not to mention, without anyone there judging you, you might dare to do things you would normally hold back from. And we don’t necessarily mean something illegal or shady - please don’t do that.
I bet there is at least one (perfectly legal and safe) activity you can think of that has always been there, lurking in the back of your mind, but you could never find anyone to go with, or was afraid of what people might say.
Getting a tattoo? Riding a mechanical bull? Going on a blind date? Solo travel is the time to do all that and more. There are no bummers to convince to join you. And nobody will ever have to know if you don’t want to tell them.
You never know the full extent of what you are able to do when you’re stuck within your safe zone. It is only when we enter the unknown completely alone that we show our true colours.
It may sound scary, but we mean it in a positive way. You can’t test the limits of your courage until you do something that requires you to draw on it.
So many solo travellers claim they never thought they would be brave enough to do so many things: jump on a plane on their own, talk to strangers, visit a foreign country alone, or eat in a restaurant by themselves.
Solo travel allows you to discover yourself personality-wise, but also in terms of your limits. It gives you the chance to test them, accept them, and then systematically stretch them out.
It won’t happen overnight. Solo travel is a constant journey, and a continuous discovery. With every solo trip, you will find out something new, until your understanding of who you are at your core and the amazing things you are capable of grows significantly.
And once this happens, every experience will seem more familiar and less daunting. Not only will you get the gist of the solo travel process, but you will also know more about yourself and what you can and cannot do.
Self-discovery is just the initial phase. Understanding who you are is only the beginning. What really matters is asking yourself: “What can I do to improve?”.
If you encounter a problem while solo travelling, you have no choice but to fix it. It then helps you overcome a new limit, so that the next time it happens, you will be prepared.
Facing various challenges is the best way to build up your character. There are so many things we normally wouldn’t even try to deal with on our own, because there is always someone who would be better at it.
But what happens when the person you would normally ask for help isn’t there? Of course, you can call them, or find a local specialist. But here’s the thing about solo travel: it gets you competitive.
Once you depart on a solo adventure, you will want to prove yourself. There will always be voices - including your own - questioning whether solo travel is something you can do. There will be people doubting you, worrying about you, maybe even trying to discourage you from going.
When travelling solo, you won’t want to call about every little thing and make everyone back home concerned. You will try to find a way on your own before asking for help. And, as a result, you will discover just how many things you know how to do that you never knew you knew how to do.
Have you ever had to cross something out of your travel plan because your travel companion preferred to do something else? Felt like you didn’t use your trip to the max because whoever you went with had trouble getting up in the morning? Missed an appointment because somebody else took too long to get ready?
Personally, my answer to all of those questions was: yes. But those things simply don’t happen when you travel solo.
There is no need to compromise when travelling alone. You can do what you want and go wherever you want, whenever you want.
You’d like to sleep in without worrying about someone complaining about wasted time? Go for it. You prefer to get up at dawn to get the most out of your day? Have fun. You’re in the mood to go out past your usual bedtime? No problem.
Travelling with someone is fun, but finding the right travel companion can be challenging. Sometimes, you can get along perfectly well in everyday life, but suddenly, you go on a trip together, and it ends up being full of conflict.
Solo travel is a great option when you’re feeling adventurous and aren’t in the mood to discuss your decisions with others. We all need to put ourselves first and focus solely on meeting our own needs once in a while. And it’s not selfish at all.
Some of us charge our batteries by being around other people. Others are the opposite - too much social interaction exhausts them. But even the biggest social butterflies can’t argue with the importance of me-time every once in a while.
Solo travel is the ultimate me-time. It gives you the rare opportunity to spend some time by yourself, with no expectations, and just rest. There is nothing you have to do to make others happy. Your only obligation is to make yourself happy.
If you want, you can get out there and talk to people. If you don’t, then you don’t. You determine whether you have the energy to make friends, or if you’re in the mood to spend the entire trip in your own company.
And you know what? Even if you decide to spend the whole day by yourself in your room, it’s okay. The only rules of solo travel - excluding the obvious safety tips - are the ones you set yourself.
Personally, I can’t count the number of times I dreamed of moving to a desert island where nobody would talk to me for a week straight. Solo travel makes that possible. Use that chance if you can.
Solo travel can’t be experienced through theory. It is something you just have to try. We hope our reasons have convinced you why you should do it and you will include it in your personal travel plan for 2024.
Before you go, make sure to do thorough research and prepare to ensure your safety and avoid common travel mistakes. Careful planning will allow you to discover the numerous benefits of travel and enjoy a carefree trip as a solo traveller.
We won’t lie. Solo travel can get lonely.
Most travel blogs only ever show photos of cool experiences, wild parties, and tons of new friends. They don’t talk about all the time you spend by yourself.
There will be a lot of alone moments when you travel solo. In your accommodation, between different destinations, before you meet new people.
But you know what? Alone time is not a bad thing. Surrounded by social media and exacerbated standards, we feel the constant pressure to surround ourselves with unforgettable experiences and small crowds.
But doing things on your own can be equally rewarding. Solo travel definitely teaches you the valuable skill of feeling comfortable in your own company. Of loving yourself. Of accepting who you are when nobody is watching.
The beginnings are hard, but the more you travel solo, the better you will get at appreciating your own company and realising that you don’t always need other people to have fun.
Solo travel can be safe if done well. Nowadays, it is such a popular activity, that there are numerous solutions to keep solo travellers safe and sound during their adventures. But common reason applies above all.
Follow basic safety measures. Always have a charged, functioning phone on you. Never go anywhere without telling someone where you are and what you will be doing. Share your live location with someone you trust. Don’t advertise the fact that you’re travelling solo to strangers. Comply with local rules and customs. Choose your destination carefully.
Don’t let paranoia get to you, but be careful. It is always better to be safe than sorry, especially in a foreign place.
The most honest answer to this question is: it depends. For some, solo travel can be a great way to overcome their insecurities and put their struggles into perspective. But for others, this kind of experience might prove to be a trigger.
If you are dealing with any sort of mental health issues and are wondering whether solo travel might help you, consult a specialist. Someone who knows your medical history, your personality, and your intentions will be able to have an honest conversation with you about the possible strengths and limitations of travelling solo.
Don’t let anyone tell you you can’t or won’t do something, but be realistic about it. If together, you decide that now is not the best time for you to depart on a solo adventure, construct a plan that will allow you to prepare for doing it in the future.
Solo travel poses many difficulties. Loneliness, having to solve issues on your own, or a lack of security are some of the most common disadvantages of travelling alone.
However, instead of focusing on the challenges of solo travel, we recommend thinking of what it can teach you. The more obstacles you overcome, the more you will grow as a person.
Everything seems scary the first time you have to do it. Going to school, driving a car, being a parent, your first day at work. Yet most people do all of those things every day, until they become as natural as breathing. Solo travel is no different.