Our Editors independently research, test, and rate what we feel are the best products. We use affiliate links and may receive a small commission on purchases.
Traveling solo is one of the best ways to explore the world, and it is something everyone should try at least once in their lifetime. Whether you couldn’t find someone to go on a trip with you or you simply needed to get away for a while, solo trips will present endless opportunities to experience the world in a new, authentic way.
However, traveling alone for the first time can also be quite stressful and intimidating, so here are some helpful tips that will turn your solo trip into a wonderful adventure:
1. Plan your trip in advance
Planning your trip in advance is one of the best things you can do as a solo traveler, as it will give you a set routine and some sense of security when you’re on the road. Before you depart, make sure all of your travel arrangements are in order, and always book accommodation for the whole trip before you leave, paying close attention to their reviews and customer experiences.
While you can also book tickets and day trips, and make daily itineraries in advance, there’s truly no need to go into too much detail – a loose plan will be more than enough to maintain a good travel routine.
2. Download offline maps and itineraries
Whether you’re traveling domestically or going abroad, you never know when you will have access to internet or end up losing your GPS mapping in an unfamiliar location. That is why it might be best to download offline maps of your destination prior to your departure, to ensure you never lose track of where you’re going.
Another good idea would be to take screenshots or print out your reservation confirmations, flight details, numbers and addresses, as well as important personal information, to have it on hand as a reference at any given moment. Don’t forget to send a copy of your itinerary to your friends and family as well, just in case anything unexpected happens on the road.
3. Buy a good travel insurance policy
Buying travel health insurance is non-negotiable regardless of the situation, but it’s especially important when you’re traveling by yourself.
When you don’t have anyone else looking out for you and taking care of you, a good travel insurance policy will give you some peace of mind and ease your worries in case anything goes wrong along the way.
If you’re not sure how to find the best insurance policy for you, there are many great websites where you can compare private health insurance in order to find the one most suitable for your personal needs.
4. Always pack light and smart
We’ve all been guilty of packing too many clothes for a vacation at one point, but it’s essential not to make this mistake when traveling solo. Instead, keep your luggage as light as possible, so that you can easily carry it around with you. A wheeled duffel bag and/or carry on type backpack are good options.
In addition to checking the weather and preparing yourself in advance for anything that might come your way, make sure to also bring comfortable hiking shoes that will allow you to explore your destination without any pain or discomfort. Don’t forget to pack a few handy travel accessories as well, such as reusable cups, travel pillows and eye masks, all of which will make your trip that much more comfortable and enjoyable.
5. Meet new people and make friends
Depending on how much time you spend on the road, it can get a bit boring and monotonous if you don’t put in some effort to create new experiences with new people. Even if you are an introvert, try to step out of your comfort zone and talk to a local at a bar or a café, or even use social media as a great way to meet new people.
Another good idea might be to find out if any old friends and acquaintances now live in the destination you are visiting, and don’t be afraid to reach out to them. There are many opportunities for socializing; you just have to put yourself out there.
6. Don’t be afraid to try new things
One of the biggest benefits of traveling alone is the fact that you get the opportunity to do whatever you want. So, push your limits and make the most of your time exploring your destination, as you might not get this chance every time you travel.
Dare to do something you’ve always dreamed about, and cross a few things off your bucket list. Whether it’s spending the day in a museum, watching the stars while sitting on a sandy beach or going skydiving, spend your time on the road doing everything you want to do, and make sure to take advantage of every precious moment.
Even though traveling alone can be quite daunting at times, these incredible tips will help you prepare yourself in advance, in order to have the trip of a lifetime and experience some of life’s most inspiring adventures.