The best solo travel tips

Eleanor Roosevelt, the famous American political figure, diplomat, and activist, once said, 

"The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience." 

We fully agree with her, and based on our experience traveling to a new place alone is one of the best ways to follow her advice. People who have never traveled alone often describe their first solo trip as an almost religious experience. Again, we couldn't agree more. As humans, we are so busy in our daily lives and mingling with people around us that we often forget the most important relationship of all, the one with ourselves. Going into new surroundings unfiltered by the prejudices, tastes, or preferences of a traveling companion can be the most incredible way to know yourself. Solo travel gives you the chance to indulge yourself fully as well as grow. Traveling solo can be one of the most exciting, liberating, and eye-opening experiences, regardless of age, gender, or background. 

Read about Solo traveling tips for women here.

Solo Travel offers ample opportunity for self-reflection, soul growth, and boundless freedom. It can also be daunting, especially if you've never traveled solo before. But a little preparation and common sense can save you money and help you ensure that your trip goes smoothly.

Do your planning in advance - When traveling alone, it is good to have everything in order before you embark on your journey. The plan doesn't need to be overly detailed, but a slight outline should be clear to the traveler. Many times, if you are traveling to another country, booking your stay is mandatory for your visa application. Before booking a place to stay, do a little research and only stay at a reputed hotel, decent hostel, or Airbnb property with multiple positive reviews. These reviews will give you a good idea of what to expect from the host, neighborhood, and if any other tenants might be sharing the property with you. You can also check the reviews or send them an email beforehand, asking about safety standards.

Do the right packing and pack light - One of the essential things to keep in mind while planning a solo trip is to pack light. If you may want to explore multiple cities, nature, beaches, and hiking trails on your trip, it is best to pack light as dragging around bulky suitcases will be challenging for you alone. Many remote cities and countryside destinations may not have optimal transport, packing light will help you save time and energy. Therefore, it is best to pack your luggage according to what you can carry yourself in a suitcase or bag that you can carry with ease. Make sure you bring all the necessary documents like Permits, Visa, ID proofs, maps, etc. If you take medicines regularly, ensure you pack that as well. This also goes for some snacks, especially if you have food allergies. Having a couple of energy bars and a water bottle on you at all times can help you a ton.

Itinerary details - Leave a copy of your itinerary with a friend or family member at home, and stay in touch regularly via phone, text, video chat, or email. There are quite a few available apps that help solo travelers when you get stuck in some difficult situations. Please do your research and install such apps according to the country you visit. For example, I tend to share my uber trip with loved ones if I am traveling solo. 

Trust everyone and no one - One of the best reasons to travel alone is to meet new people, but this also makes you more vulnerable. It's okay to hang out, travel, and share with new friends, but you might not want to ask them to hold your money, belongings, or explore remote areas with strangers. Scam artists can often be the most charming companions you'll find; you want to be open-minded, but keep your guard up enough to ensure your safety.

Be proactive - Being lost while traveling alone is never a good idea; be aware and proactive. For example, if you need help, look for a police station or shop to help you. If you feel like asking for directions, ask a family or a couple you see on the street. Do not panic or make hasty decisions. 

Do Something You Normally Wouldn't Do With Others - Ever wanted to try a new dish, wear something you couldn't wear back home or maybe you just want to go to an amusement park? This can be a time to try something others will not do with your regular travel party. Don't be hesitant to try new things. 

Make a List of Your Emergency Contact Information - This final tip is a good idea for every traveler. Make a list of your emergency contact information that is readily accessible. The list can include your personal contact information, the name of an emergency contact back home, and any other pertinent phone numbers you might need. For example, you might include the toll-free number for your credit card company if your card is stolen, or you have to activate the travel protection benefits if your plans are interrupted.


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