Solo travel is an incredible experience, something everyone should try at least once. However, it can be a daunting challenge. These 15 tips will help you get the most out of your trip, and really enjoy the experience itself.
- Pack light: You’re on your own, so no one will be helping you with those bags. Pack light, and pack smart. Use checklists to prevent overpacking and prepare only those things you need.
- Study your destination: Get a map and use it. Get to know where the landmarks are. If you know, say, Central Park is in New York, you can start making your way around easily.
- Hide your valuables: This goes for any country that you visit. If you act like a tourist, flashing the cash, or your expensive camera, then you could be a target for thieves. Keep it safe, keep it hidden.
- Learn some useful phrases: Depending on where you’re going, you may want to learn some useful phrases in the language. For example, in France, some people can speak English, but it’s much more helpful to try speaking in French first. Try learning some phrases with a tutor from Academized, before you go.
- Stay at places that encourage communication: Places such as B&Bs and hostels have common rooms, which help you meet up with other travelers from around the world.
- Use travel apps: There’s an app for everything, and travel is no exception. You can use travel apps like Google Trips and Travefy, guides, payment apps, and more, all from your phone. It helps cut down on how much you need to take with you, too.
- Research the customs before you go: Did you know you can be fined for chewing gum in Singapore? If you don’t, you could be in a sticky situation. Research the local customs before you travel.
- Budget your trip in advance: As with any trip abroad, it’s a good idea to have a budget set up ready for you. It’s also a good idea to have backup plans. For example, if you lose the money you have on you, it’s helpful to have accounts set up with freelance sites such as Upwork and UK Writings. That way you can earn some cash to tide yourself over.
- Keep tabs on your alcohol consumption: You don’t have to stay teetotal for your entire trip, but if you enjoy a drink, ensure that you stay in control. If you don’t, you could end up putting your safety at risk.
- Carry the hotel’s business card: If you get lost, you can hand it to a taxi driver and they can take you back.
- Don’t tell everyone you’re alone: Traveling alone is amazing, but others can see it as a sign of weakness. Don’t broadcast the fact you’re traveling alone. If you do, you could become the target of crime.
- Use the safe: Your hotel room feels safe, but it is possible that your items can ‘go missing’ while you’re staying there. Use the safe, which only you will know the combination for.
- Wear the correct clothes: Different cultures have different dress codes. For example, if you’re a woman you’ll be expected to cover your head in certain cultures. Look up what you can and cannot wear before you go.
- Connect with travelers online: Before you go, find like-minded travelers who’ll be traveling at the same time as you. You can arrange meetups while you’re there, and make new friends.
- Copy your documents: Make copies of documents like your passport, and have them in a safe location, such as Dropbox. That way you can always access them.
These tips will help you travel safely, while still getting the most out of the adventure.