I’ve always loved travelling. Ever since I was little, travel has been a part of me. Moving from place to place (especially when it’s somewhere new and exotic) makes you itch to see even more of the world. But the thing about always moving somewhere new is you don’t get to take your friends with you. So you learn to do a lot of things on your own, including travelling.
I think a lot of people find the idea of travelling alone daunting or unappealing. Sure, it’s risky. But we also experience risk every time we get up and walk out of our front doors. So, sometimes, you’ve just got to take a chance.
The beauty of travelling by yourself is that you are in control. Destination? Your choice. Duration? Your choice. Excursions? You get the picture.
Sure, it is overwhelming when there’s so much to remember and you’re solely responsible for your trip but there’s no need to stress. While there’s no fool-proof plan to worry-free travelling, there are some ways to lessen your nerves.
Plan & Organise
This one isn’t rocket science. The more you’re able to organise and plan in advance, the less you’ll have to worry about while you’re away. Whether you’re jetting off for a package holiday or setting out on a backpacking trek, this rule applies. Arrange anything you can ahead of time. Then, while you’re away, just enjoy the carefree moments.
Always pack for your destination. Figure out if you’re better off with light layers or warm woolies… and bring them. Pack enough meds for your trip, plus extras (in case your flight home is delayed) and a doctor/pharmacy note to cover any prescriptions in Customs. If you’re backpacking, pack frugally, but don’t forget something that you may not be able to replace along the way. Keep in mind: if you want to cook while on the go, you’ll likely need the best backpacking mess kit.
Buy & Pre-Charge Power Banks
This is my favourite travel tip, especially if I’m going somewhere that may not have the most reliable electricity. With power banks, I can stay connected to the outside world, keep my Kindle alive, and my music blaring.
Tell Someone Where You Are
It may lead to a bit of a phone bill, but if you’re travelling alone, it’s best to keep someone in the loop when you’re on the move. Also, let them know when you should return from your travels, including any excursions you may go on. This is another reason why power banks are so useful!
Whether it’s books, magazines, music, or movies, take plenty of entertainment to keep yourself occupied when you’re not exploring! Your favorite media (plus books of crosswords and brain games) are great for filling the silence while you lounge out in the evenings and for keeping you company during dinner.
Research Required Paperwork
I got caught with an unexpected visa fee on one holiday because the local airport only took cash… and I had just spent mine! Some countries will have fees upon entry, and some will only accept specific currencies. If you’re going exploring, you may find that your travels require paperwork, entry fees, or hike fees so it’s best to try to work those out beforehand!
Solo travel isn’t scary. It’s a wonderful adventure. Go at your own pace because it’s fun not to have anyone to dictate the rules, that’s one of the perks of solo travel! Stay in bed ’til noon, or get up for a sunrise swim. After all, travelling solo is all up to you. What will you choose next?
The fact is, solo travelling can be stressful. It can be knackering and frustrating because the responsibilities it brings are all on your shoulders. But travelling alone is also one of the most beautiful, rewarding paths you could ever dream to follow. So pack your bags, take off, and start exploring!