Why Solo Travel Is A Thing Everyone Should Try
Hey guys! How is everybody doing? Today, I wanted to share with you my perspective on why solo travel is a thing everyone should try. Yes, you all probably got that from the title.. Well, I have been travelling on my own for a couple of times now - this might obviously also be referred to for trips to places in your country - and both times I have really enjoyed my time abroad. I don't think that solo travelling is necessarily for everybody but I definitely think that, even if you're scared now, it is a thing that you should try at least once and here is why:
Your Trip, Your Plans!
- Or, you'll get to know which things you prioritise...
You alone are the one who gets to fill your days on holiday with the things that you'd like to do. There is nobody who you have to compromise your activities so that you can make the most out of your trip, with everything you could possibly fit in your time away, which leaves you the chance of ticking off a whole lot of your holiday bucket list. Fantastic! But not only that: On another level, you'll get to know yourself better. By making your plans of what to do and where to visit, you'll learn which aspects of visiting new places you prioritise. Of course, these priorities can differ depending on your specific destination (e.g., beach vs. city trip) but maybe you'll notice that culture is more important to you than seeing all the sights that tourists usually visit, or that you like to wander around and take in the vibes of a place instead of having a fixed itinerary. Perhaps you'd rather try all the local food instead of visiting museums or finding awesome viewpoints. Maybe you find yourself spending most of your time at the beach, or with people you just got to know, or something else that is specific to your liking. This knowledge about yourself can potentially be quite useful for future trips - with others or on your own again!
Besides, I think that spending, say.. a week, most of the time by yourself, you'll have lots of time not only to enjoy discovering new places but also to think about things that get a bit lost when you're at home, doing whatever you are doing normally. I like to use particularly that time alone to reflect on life, potentially on goals, on friendships, etc., basically, on things that might require a little distance to your normal routine, and you might go home with a few clearer views on important aspects of your life.
Your Trip, Your Responsibility!
- Or, only you will be in charge of organising your trip...
With freedom comes responsibility. In particular on solo trips. If you don't look after your transport, your accomodation or your shopping yourself, nobody else does it for you. By nature, I am a person who always likes to be informed about time tables, to have city maps prepared (or sorted data on my phone for Google Maps), to have a list with opening times of museums, starting points and times of walking tours, or information about the facilities that my accommodation provides (Free wifi? Free computers to use? Washing machines? etc.), but I also know people who'd rather rely on others to be in charge of knowing those things. Personally, this would make me worried that I might get lost and have no idea how to get to where I need to go, or that I might not get to the airport in time because I haven't bothered to find out the bus stop and times beforehand, or might not have my documents ready at hand when needed. For me, I've learned: Be rather overly organised than stressed out or worried - and it has served me well so far! This aspect of solo travelling, I think, made me a more self-confident person. It gives you the impression that you have it together and don't depend on others to get to where you need or want to go, whereever that may be. I'm not a person who is anxious when I'm on my own (even abroad) normally, but it additionally gives you - or shall I say myself at least - that extra boost of confidence that makes me feel comfortable as a person and probably shows on the outside.
Your Trip, Your Choices!
- Or, you'll have the freedom to spontaneously throw all your plans overboard...
This one is maybe more dependend on what kind of a person you are. I'm the kind of person who has a list of things ready to 'work through' with all the places or activities that I want to do on holiday and then plans what to do when considering the weather situation, my mood or opening times instead of leaving it for the last minute and in the end regret not having done as much as I could have. BUT, I'm also quite flexible in case things turn out differently from how I originally thought they would. For example, if I might have got to know someone from the accommodation and they ask me if I wanted to join them or if they could join me, I'm the last person to say 'No' (given that I'd actually like the activity, obviously). They could turn out to be people who you'll talk to even years later. They don't have to be but that won't be the end of the world because you might have enjoyed a day with them anyway. However, I have experienced a situation where I have known a person for a week, and over two years and two visits later (we're living in different countries), I'm close friends with the other person and we regularly chat about anything and everything via WhatsApp. And I'm not even a very outgoing person by nature, so, everything is possible if you just say 'Yes'!
Also, in my opinion, you'll get to know other people from around the world - or maybe even from your own country - in your accommodation much more likely when you travel alone. This may not be true for everybody but I think, when there is noone you already know around you all the time, you will probably sit with others at breakfast, or meet others more than once when you come back to the accommodation at the end of the day. Also, you are not - as you would when travelling with others - even unconsciously, in an isolated pair or group, which means, you are probably more conscious of the people around you and maybe even more approachable for other solo travellers. At least, that was my impression when I was away on my own.
Now that you know my reasons why travelling alone is a great thing to do, tell me: Have you ever been on a trip on your own? How did you find it and would you do it again? Where did you go and what have you learned? Please leave it in the comments, I would love to hear your stories!