I travelled alone, with friends and with partners, and learned a lot.
Travelling with other people is always nice because you have someone to share everything with, but also travel solo has its positives. Here is my list of what you might miss when travelling with a travel mate.
I am not pushing you to make a solo trip if you are not ready. I want you to think about it, read my article and then decide if it could be a good experience for you. For me, it was amazing and it really opened my mind.
Also, read "66 Reasons to Travel Solo at Least Once in a Lifetime".
I know many people who were scared to try it, but after listening to my wonderful experience as a solo traveller, they gave it a go, and they came back home incredibly happy and, in a way, more mature.
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Read 20 Positive things about traveling solo
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1. You do not have to wait to find a travel mate:
I put this as number one because this is one reason why people travel alone. We often think we need a travel mate to go somewhere, but it is just because we have never traveled alone and are scared to try it.
2. You can travel anytime you want:
You do not need to find someone who can book a holiday in the same period as you. When travelling solo, you can go whenever you wish, and whenever is the best time to go to a specific place. (Island in January? Maybe better August!).
3. You can choose to go wherever you like:
We often end up going to a place we are not interested in, instead of going where we really want, just because we cannot find someone willing to come with us.
Or because our friends don't have the financial possibility as us, we cannot see places that occur spending more money. When travelling solo, we don't have to care about other people's budgets, but only about ours.
4. You can stay as long as you like:
How many times have you had two weeks holiday while your travel mate had only one week?
Or you wanted to plan a long weekend, but none of your friends could take a Friday off? Problem solved, go alone!
5. You will make some new friends:
If you are willing to talk to strangers that you will meet on your way or at your accommodation, you will end up making new friends for sure. This is one of the things that make solo travel so enjoyable.
When travelling with friends, we spend 24h a day with our travel mates without the chance to meet other people. When travelling alone, we are more open to talking to anyone and making new friends.
6. You can be alone whenever you want:
Relaxing sunset losing your sight at the ocean with nobody talking all the time?
Or spending a whole day lying on the beach reading a book without somebody asking you to go somewhere or do something every five minutes because they are bored?
That is one of the reasons why many people decide to travel alone, and I love it too sometimes.
7. You can make your own decisions:
You can choose how to react to every kind of situation. You will decide what to do, where to go and who you will spend your time with. No one will tell you, "no, I do not want to go there" or "I do not want to meet other people", etc.
You can be free to enjoy your travel how you like.
8. You can change your plan any time you want:
You previously decided to stay for one week, but your manager tells you that you can have two weeks of holiday?
Amazing, change your plan and add more sites to visit. You meet a nice boy/girl during your travel, and they ask you to visit another city together for a couple of days?
It is your travel so do everything you want.
9. You will learn another language:
One of the best things about travelling is learning another language. And when you travel alone, you are forced to do it because otherwise, nobody will talk to you.
Even if you meet locals who speak English, if they hear you trying to say a few words in their language, they will appreciate you more because you will show them an interest in their culture and the willingness to learn from them.
If you are looking for an easy and fun way to learn another language, have a look at Duolingo. It is an incredible free app where you can learn many languages and have fun at the same time. Have a look at Duolingo here.
10. Solo travel can be much cheaper:
Hostels can be very cheap compared to a hotel room. If you are willing to share the space with other people, you can find a bed for only ten euro/$ per night.
In case you are choosing a single room in a hotel, in that case, it can be more expensive than sharing a double room, unfortunately.
When travelling solo, will not feel compelled to go out to drink when you are tired and want to stay in and watch a movie or vice-versa.
11. You can have total control of your money:
You can be free to spend them as you wish and be cheap as much as you want.
How many times did you end up visiting a museum with your travel mate even if you did not care just because you did not want to wait outside alone?
Or you went to a more expensive hotel because your friend did not want to share a room in a Hostel? That problem is over!
You can save as much as you can and spend on other things you like the most.
12. You can plan your travel as you wish:
Do you want to plan a whole day at the beach or 6 hours inside one of your favourite museums?
Nobody will tell you to don't do it! Are you tired from the day before, your feet hurt, and you want to roll in bed the whole morning? You are more than welcome to do it because nobody will be there trying to convince you to go out to walk 20 kilometres, just because they do not want to be alone.
13. You do not have to deal with other people needs:
This one is a good reason. All of us have that particular friend that always needs to do something that only they want or like, and all of our friends end up doing it just because it would be wrong not to.
Or do you maybe have a friend that always has to complain about something and he is always unsatisfied?
The good news is: that friend will not be with you!
14. You will pay more attention to what happens around you:
When travelling with friends, people often focus more on the conversation than on what is around them and what is happening.
In this way, we lose many things that are part of the travel experience.
15. You will discover skills you did not know to have:
You will maybe discover to be great at planning travels (like I did), or you will be a genius at finding the best travel deals, to be the best at finding the hidden spots, to be braver than you thought etc.
16. You can have more chances to live an adventure (in every way):
You will be surprised at how many people you will meet when travelling solo.
How many more friends you will make while travelling and sometimes you will live more than a friendship, probably ending up in a delicious romance.
Unfortunately, this is not always possible when travelling with a friend because maybe your mate does not want to be left alone, so being a solo traveller gives you the freedom to live your travel as you want and less tight up to someone else.
17. You can live your travel at your own time:
Do you like to wake up at 7 am and be ready to explore the city at 8 am? Please do it!
Do you like to sleep till 11 am and go out nightclubbing? Just do it! The day is yours, and you can live it as you want.
18. You will detox from constant people problems:
Another reason I love the most about travelling solo is that you won't have to listen to friends, relatives, and coworkers' problems.
It does not mean that you do not care about them, absolutely not. But for the time of your holiday, concentrate on yourself.
That is why many people decide to travel solo. It is not because they do not love their family or friends. It is because we need some time for ourselves. Constantly hearing someone else problems (even though we love to listen to them and help them) is not suitable for our mental health.
19. You will stop being shy and more open to meeting people:
Being alone all day after a while can be lonely for some people. While travelling solo, you will realize how easier it is to make new friends because you will be alone, and people will be interested in you and your story.
20. You can eat whenever you want whatever you want:
Are you travelling on a budget? No problem, eat lunch in a street market and get dinner in a supermarket.
Do you want to try all the best local restaurants? Go for it, because nobody will tell you to don't.
Money is yours so spend them as you like. Also, time is yours, so eat whenever you are hungry. And please don't be shy to eat alone in a restaurant. When happen to me, I bring a book, and I also talk more with the staff.
Remember that shop and restaurants staff know the area and can give you precious advice about the place you are visiting.
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