Are you thinking about booking a solo trip? Going it alone might seem intimidating at first, especially if you haven’t travelled much before or tend to let others lead the way. But you could find it more rewarding – and you might just learn a thing or two about yourself.
While the pandemic has skewed travel statistics, ABTA’s 2018 Holiday Habits Report found that as many as one in six people were choosing to holiday alone. Reasons for doing so are varied, but key pluses include having the freedom to set your own plans and dictate your own schedule. Want to explore somewhere off the beaten track, or make your stay a little longer or shorter? Go for it – there’s no-one to stop you!
The opportunity to make new friends is another big draw of solo travel. You’ll meet like-minded people from all over the world that you might not otherwise engage with, and you could even help each other out along the way.
Solo travel is also a huge opportunity to grow as a person. You’ll get a better feel for what you’re capable of and what you enjoy – as well as the opposite. Who knows, you might even return feeling like a completely different person!
Ready to do it? Read some quick tips for making your solo trip a success.
Quick tips for travelling solo
Research is key. Take a deep dive into your chosen destinations and assess things like costs, cultural differences and safety – before you leave. This NHS guide to travel vaccinations could come in handy.
Once you’ve picked your route, don’t wait too long to book. Whether you’re going from Hartlepool to London by train or Honolulu to Lima by plane, booking travel in advance will almost always be cheaper and less stressful.
…but stay flexible
At the same time, an important thing to know about travelling is that some things are out of your control. You might get delayed or have your plans cancelled sometimes – and there’s little you can do about it.
As long as you avoid trying to pack too much in and are aware of potential pitfalls like unreliable public transport, you’ll learn to roll with the punches.
Stay in touch with people
Solo travel can feel isolating sometimes, so it’s best to keep in touch with friends and family when you can. It also helps having people know where you are and what you’re up to from a safety point of view.
The same goes for communicating with people you bump into on the way. Who knows, your plans could realign one day!
Know your strengths (and weaknesses)
This tip might be easier said than done if it’s your first big trip alone. But recognising your strengths as well as your negative tendencies – like losing things, for example – will give you a better chance of thriving on the move.
Another potential issue might be a lack of spontaneity – or too much of it. How could these characteristics impact your trip?
Other solo travel tips include managing and storing money wisely, looking after yourself and packing right. Now what are you waiting for?!