Sometimes I travel on my own. And I like it. I know people who want to travel on their own, but find it a bit scary and are afraid of getting bored and I know people who do travel alone but have not found the joy of it. So, I wrote down my tip on how to get "better" at traveling on your own.
I travel on my own, not because I have to, but because I want to. I like doing what I want. I also like traveling together with someone. But for me the target of the travel, the travel in itself is most important. I decide that first and then I find out if it fits to travel with someone or I will do it on my own.
My best advices:
Make a plan for the travel, something to do
It is boring being somewhere where nothing happens. You should travel to a place where there is a great chance of meeting new people, where you can see and discover stuff or where you have a plan to do something else. I have been on my own in New York, maybe the easiest place to travel on your own. There is always something going on. I traveled on my own to a beach holiday in Goa, India. Not much happening there, but my plan was to do and learn more yoga, to relax and read plenty of books. It was great!
Be aware of how long it feels ok to be on your own
I have this limit for how long it feels ok to be on my own. Even though you meet other people it is not like being with your friends back home. Think about how long it feels ok for you just being on your own or with people you don’t know. Some people can travel like that for a year, some people think one week is enough. Try figuring out your limit before planning a long trip.
Get a hobby
And I do not mean learning Salsa so that you can dance the night away in Cuba (even though salsa is a great dance to know and can give you lots of fun in many countries). What I do mean is that it is great to have something to concentrate on where you are. I often have a photo project, the camera keeps me busy and even feels like a good friend. Another tip is to write a travel journal or a blog. Or just find things you plan to see, like all the vintage shops in Paris or all the strangest museums in Berlin. Learning more of the language in the country your are in is another tip, it helps you to meet new people as well.
Books, books, books
To bad if you do not like reading because when you travel alone a book is the perfect thing when waiting at airports, sitting on your own at the coffee shop or at your hotel in the evening. You need it so much more then when you are traveling with someone. My best tip is to read about the country you are in. I love travel guides (one of the areas where I still prefer paper books), but even better is books about the country you are in, about culture, food, history and maybe a story about someone traveling in the country or people living there. Then you learn even more about the country you are in and have entertainment at the same time.
Find social spots
It actually takes some practice, but if you are dining on your own or are just looking for a place to grab a beer, you should look for places where you see people talking, maybe there is music, a relaxed mood, not the fancy restaurant. A place where it looks comfortable to read your book or easy to get to know people. When it comes to accommodation, a hostel is the best place if you want to meet people.
Travel with a group
It was not my favourite, I like planning my own trips. But if you are afraid of traveling on your own because of safety or want to make sure that you get to know other people, traveling with a group is great. You just have to find the right company to travel with. Do some research to make sure there are people on your own age, many agencies have a pretty high average age on their travelers. I found one (Gadventures) where the average age is around 30 and they arrange tours with adventures and activities and I loved it.
Travel and get lost
This advice is my favorite travel advice both when you travel alone and with someone. Throw away your map and walk in the opposite direction, you will definitely see things you did not expect. But use common sense, make sure you do not walk in to areas tourist should keep out from.
Use common sense
You are more vulnerable when traveling on your own and especially if you are a girl. I swear to common sense: Do not go to areas you know are unsafe (do some research), skip the dark alleys, be sober enough to find your way home or to find a taxi etc.
Do what you feel like
The greatest reason for traveling on your own, you can do exactly what YOU want and I guarantee you will do stuff that you would not do traveling with someone else.
Do you have another advice to share? Please do below!