Are you afraid of exploring a new country all by yourself? For many people, the answer to this question would be yes. From a young age, many of us have gotten used to travelling in groups, usually with family members and friends. When we’re still children, going places alone simply isn’t an option. And when we’re teenagers, visiting new international places with friends seems like the most exciting thing in the world.
This doesn’t mean our travel habits never evolve though – the more we travel, the more we begin to discover our travel style and routines. We might always want to start our day when abroad with a cup of coffee and a light local breakfast, just as much as we might tend to avoid going back to the hotel before it gets really late. While our travel tendencies clearly progress over time, one thing doesn’t. That is, the drive to travel alone.
A lot of different people will tell you that solo travelling sounds like something that can be good for you in many ways, but why don’t a great number of individuals actually go for it?
Indeed, a number of worries may cross travellers’ mind before they’re about to book a flight by themselves. These normally include concerns about feeling lonely, bored and unsafe. However, a little extra preparation and open-mindedness will do you wonders. Taking the first step is always the hardest, but once you manage to achieve what you set out, it always feels gratifying. For this reason, we’re providing you with a detailed list of the advantages of solo travel, and why the benefits of travelling alone outweigh its cons.
Perhaps the most enticing reason for why you should travel by yourself as soon as possible is this. Travelling with a group of people or as a couple means dedicating a lot of time to planning and agreeing on the necessary things. Finding the best places to visit, the ideal accommodations to stay in and the most convenient travel routes to take won’t be as time-consuming when you’re doing it alone. Coming to a disagreement on either of the above or more will also be something you won’t have to deal with.
Solo travel is completely and utterly freeing. You’ll come to realise that planning for yourself, with yourself, will enable you to be more spontaneous and change your mind whenever you feel like it, just because you can. There’s nothing more satisfying than being in another country and going with the flow of things. Should you wish to change your mind last minute about where you want to eat or which beach you want to go to, the switch will occur with ease. There will be no debating “I want to go here instead” or “I don’t think we should waste time here”, and for this, you’ll certainly be grateful once you’re in the situation itself.
Having said this, the newfound sense of freedom you’ll feel on a solo trip doesn’t just come from being able to take all the decisions without asking. Indeed, you’ll undoubtedly also feel free from the responsibilities and pressures of your daily routine back home. Sure, getting a break from all of your responsibilities is a con you’ll always deal with when travelling, no matter who you go with and where you go. However, being in a newly discovered place by yourself will fully distance you from your normal surroundings, offering more freedom to yourself.
If you already hate being alone amid crowds of people, travelling alone must really intimidate you. Nonetheless, a solo journey can be exactly what you need to get comfortable with who you are – no matter how introverted or extroverted you think you can be. Many agree that solo travel is one of the best ways to work on yourself, and they are right.
Being on a sole journey with just your accompanying thoughts will definitely give you the chance to become familiar with what scares you and what you wish to improve on. You can definitely make good use of all the self-discovery time at your disposal. Find a charming location with a view, open up a notebook and experiment with journaling. Being able to write down anything you might want to improve about yourself will only benefit you. While many of us have probably already thought about doing this for a long time, finding the right opportunity can be challenging at times. As is getting yourself to find some time to reflect.
In addition, solo travel is also ideal for boosting your confidence because you can actually put the things you’ve been wanting to change about yourself to practice. With nobody you know in sight, challenge yourself by doing things you wouldn’t normally do back at home. If you’d like to be less shy, go up to a new person and talk to them about anything. It will be easier for you to do so knowing that you probably won’t see this person ever again in your life. If you’d like to be more open to trying new things, go ahead and wear your craziest outfit and sing the most bizarre song at a karaoke bar. You can, because being in a new place means a new opportunity to push the boundaries of your comfort zone. Remember that you’ve got nothing to lose. At the end of your solo trip, take pleasure in the fact that you’ve not only achieved new memories and experiences you’ll forever cherish. You’ll also have achieved new skills in life that, sometimes, only solo travelling can offer you.
Improved Problem Solving and Decision Making
Getting into the habit of relying on other people to take important decisions and solve unexpected challenges can rid you of these very necessary personality traits. Sometimes, relying on the opinion of other people is easy and convenient, but you’ll find that many situations in your life will require you to give your input and take action. If you find yourself struggling with this, solo travelling can do you a lot of good.
Going abroad by yourself means having to decide on everything from choosing the right hotel to stay at to sticking to a budget for food and entertainment. You’ll also feel the expected pressure of not wanting to mess up since you’ll be alone and wanting to avoid getting yourself into a tricky situation as a result of poor decision making. Because of this, solo travel will definitely get you used to take control of the decisions you take and the problems you solve.
Improving on these qualities by yourself when you’re travelling will give you an added sense of control in life, and will also benefit you in your relationships and at work.
Meeting New People
The chances of befriending new people abroad when you’re travelling with friends and other companions you know well are quite low. This is because travelling with friends and family is a very collective and unified activity, and relying on one other comes automatically. Sure, you might find yourself interacting with local people when travelling with others, but you probably won’t push yourself enough to engage in a fulfilling conversation and mingle.
Should you find yourself missing one-on-one contact on your solo trip, start by going up to people with the aim of getting to know them. Interacting with different people from another country will only enrich you. You’ll be exposed to new ways of thinking, new cultures, new backgrounds and new ways of life. Filling yourself up with knowledge about how other people live will not only be fun, it will also open you up to new experiences. You might find yourself wanting to practice hobbies other people in the world currently have, or you might simply open your mind to new beliefs about major issues such as art, religion and politics. Whatever it may be, reading and hearing about other places in the world will do no justice to experiencing other cultures firsthand. The best way to learn in life is to see and experience things yourself.
No matter how much importance our contemporary society may give to constantly staying connected and having a lot of friends, there’s no better medicine for the soul than solitude.
Life can pass right by us, leaving us feeling overwhelmed with the heaps of responsibilities and work we need to handle not only for ourselves but also for other people. It is what it is. The most important thing to remember, however, is to take a moment to yourself every now and then in order to collect your thoughts and unwind. It’s not uncommon for people to confuse solitude with loneliness, feeling somewhat embarrassed to be seen out in public or spend a lot of time alone. However, alone time is extremely beneficial for us in many ways, and travelling solo will allow us at that time whilst also getting us into the habit of practising it at home.
If you tend to find it especially difficult to visit places alone, ask yourself this… What about solo travelling seems scary? And what can you do to overcome these fears? At times, the best thing is to simply just do it.
Living in the Moment
If you’re looking for a way of achieving ultimate peace and utter satisfaction in everything you do, here’s what the majority of spiritual healers and psychologists recommend; live in the moment. This means, to be completely undistracted and centre all of your focus on the present moment. Most of the time, we pass by our time with thoughts about the past or the future. This rids us of everything the present moment has to offer us.
Mindfulness will benefit each and every area in life you wish to implement it in – especially travel. Indeed, perfecting the art of living in the now entails being mindful in everything you do. Nonetheless, when you’re exploring and taking in the beauty and peculiarity of a new place, it’s always fulfilling to be absorbed in the present moment and forget anything else that might be running across your mind. This way, you’ll be able to take everything in and capture memories better than your phone camera would.
Travelling alone is a more ideal journey for the practice of mindfulness than travelling with other people is. When you’re voyaging with others, it’s easy to get distracted by other people, and this will surely rid you of fully taking in the place you’re at.
Going on a Solo Trip? Here’s What You Need to Keep in Mind
The first thing someone who’s travelling solo might be concerned about is safety. Without having a companion to watch your back, travelling alone might make you feel vulnerable and at a risk. However, with the right precautions, you’ll be feeling safe out there in no time.
First of all, make sure you do your research beforehand. Find out how dangerous the country you’re visiting actually is, and get familiar with the safe areas and the areas that are prone to criminality. Sticking to public and open spaces is also ideal. Once you know exactly where to go and where not to, the next thing you need to take care of is the right equipment. Getting yourself a belt beg would be convenient, as you can store your money and important documents in it safely.
The most important thing to remember when travelling by yourself is to trust yourself. This will help you in staying safe. Exuding confidence is a great way of deterring any unwanted attention. If you get lost and are stuck without a phone, walk into a shop or restaurant and ask for any help you might need. What’s more, trusting yourself abroad will instil in you a sense of resilience and assertiveness you’ll always find to be in your favour in life.
If you’re keen on taking a solo trip any time soon, choose 1926 Hotel and Spa for a tranquil and luxurious accommodation experience.