Solo travel is fast becoming the new way to travel, of course people have been travelling solo for many years, however in recent years the number of solo travellers has skyrocketed. For a solo travel virgin even the thought of travelling alone can be daunting. So, we have created this amazing list of top tips for travelling solo. If you’re reading this blog, you’re surely more than a little curious, read on and before you know it, you’ll be booking your first solo trip!
Top Tip #1 – Research
Before deciding on your destination, be sure to research the location thoroughly. This may sound greatly obvious, however finding out the level of safety where you’re staying, what to do in case of emergency and night time safety will not only give you peace of mind, it will also allow you to plan out your trip a lot better too! Know the risks of your destination before you arrive by checking the government’s travel advisory page. Ensure you purchase travel insurance in advance as you certainly do not want to bump into any surprise costs.
Be sure to check out a fair few reviews of your chosen hotel before confirming your stay, things to look out for include; reviews on the friendliness of the staff, the convenience of the location and travel links . It is also a great idea to research solo-friendly accommodation – as if this is your first solo trip you may feel more at ease with similar travellers to yourself. Try to book flights that land during daylight hours, as you do not want to be lost in a foreign location at night!
Top Tip #2 – Know Your Budget
Travelling alone can be slightly more pricey than having a travel companion. It’s always a struggle deciding how much spending money to bring on holiday with you, however when travelling alone it’s so important to ensure you budget correctly as you have no one to split costs with, or to lend you some extra change should you fall short! Planning out your daily food, activity and transportation costs should be done way before you set foot in your chosen destination.
Knowing the type of trip you want to have before you set out is important, as this will completely lay the foundation of your budget. Is your trip going to be action-packed and full of excursions, are you planning to lounge at the hotel pool all day and party all night or are you going to be exploring the famous tourist spots and visiting historical sites? Either way you need to know what you’re doing before you know what you’re about to spend – it’s also a great idea to leave room for spontaneous activities, after all you have the freedom to do exactly what YOU want! Many excursions and activities are tons cheaper if you book or purchase tickets in advance, this will also help you to breakdown what you’re doing each day.
Top Tip #3 – Itinerary
A great way to plan out your days away is to list all the things you want to do and all the things you must see. Then you can do some research into finding out what activities are close to each other and from there plan out what days to do each trip. Checking out the local map and Google Street View is also a great way to find additional places you may not have thought of. As mentioned in the budgeting tip, planning out your excursions in advance will give you the upper hand in terms of purchasing cheaper tickets and guarantees that your spot is reserved. If you have no idea where you want to go, read as many blogs as possible on your chosen location, we have some great tips and ideas in our destination blogs! It is important to share your itinerary and hotel details with someone back home, just to be sure you are double safe, and someone you trust knows your whereabouts. In the fun process of creating your itinerary, find out how the local transport system works and plan how you’ll get around each day. This will also help you to decide on the location of your hotel, so you don’t find yourself having to travel long distances.
Top Tip #4 – Travel Alone But Don’t Be Lonely
Remember travelling alone is meant to be fun, free and fabulous, it isn’t a punishment whereby you should be left feeling lonely. You’ve taken the first and hardest step by making the decision to travel solo already, so be confident in your decision and own it! Travelling solo is an amazing way to meet cool, interesting people that you wouldn’t meet otherwise and a great way to learn more about yourself. Smiling and being friendly is the easiest way to invite others to start a conversation with you. Visiting places that encourage social activity are a great way to meet new people with similar interests to you. Walking tours are a good place to start, as you often find other solo travellers on these too.
Learn the basics of the local language! Making an effort to communicate in the native language is always appreciated by locals and can often get interesting conversations started, even if it’s with the bartender at your hotel bar. If you eat and drink at the same spots you will become a regular with the staff and may start to make friends. Eating and drinking in communal areas can also push you to be even more social with other tourists!
Top Tip #5 – Nightlife
If you plan to enjoy the nightlife of your chosen destination, it is certainly a good idea to research the safety and ease of travelling at night. Going out alone at night can make you anxious even in your homeland, therefore you should take extra precaution when going out a night in an unknown place. Plan your travel ahead of time, the safest way to travel at night in most countries is via a pre-booked taxi service. Ask for advice on where the best and safest places are to go from the concierge or receptionist at your hotel, it is also a good idea to leave a note in your hotel room saying where you have gone and when you expect to be back. Be friendly but do not overdo it, you don’t want to send the wrong signals to the wrong person. Never tell someone you just met where you are staying or too much personal information.
Always keep an eye on your drink and be sure to drink responsibly. There is no one there to look out for you should things go wrong, so keep yourself safe at all times. If you need help or feel uncomfortable at anytime signal to someone for help, learn how to say help in the local language and ensure you have the number of the local emergency services.
Have fun! Solo travel is great for many reasons, go out, meet great people, learn about yourself, be free and follow our top tips to ensure a smooth, safe trip!