So you really want to go on a big trip but can’t find anyone to go with you…does that sound familiar? For many, the idea of solo travel is a bit overwhelming and daunting. In fact, it can be downright terrifying to some. Heading to a foreign place and navigating, communicating, and all that travel entails seems like it’s much easier when we travel with a companion or in a group. But in reality, these things don’t become easier simply because we are traveling with a companion.
Yes, traveling with a companion means you get to share the load with someone else. But in the end, the problems you encounter are still problems that must be overcome. Often, it’s one person or the other who figures out how to deal with these problems anyway. Granted, having support from a companion is great. However, don’t underestimate your own ability to resolve issues that might arise. Personally, I prefer traveling with a companion and I’ve written about it here. I’m quite a social butterfly so having someone there whom I know I can chat with at anytime is always nice. I like being in the company of others …especially someone I am close to. In fact, my favorite travel companion is my husband because each time we go on an adventure it’s a memory and bonding moment.
With that being said, I have traveled alone and rather enjoyed it. There is something to be said for the freedom you feel when you’re not attached to someone in the midst of your travels. Even when I travel with a companion, I typically take the time to wander off on my own and explore a bit. In many ways, I need to fill my own need for a bit of independence while I travel. Sometimes that means my travel companion takes a nap and I’m left to my own devices. Essentially, traveling solo can be inspiring, uplifting, and just awesome! There are plenty of perks to traveling solo. Here are the top 5 reasons you should give solo travel a try and not let your fears get the best of you.
Travel on your own terms
Solo travel means you don’t have to agree with anyone else when it comes to the things you will do and experience. The fear of heights your companion might have doesn’t come into play as you stand at the edge of a cliff while traveling alone. You also get to decide your own schedule. This means your itinerary is yours to control and if you find you’d like to spend more time doing something, it doesn’t matter because you don’t have to consult with anyone. This makes your time much more flexible and last-minute changes are not a problem.
You’ll inevitably meet people
Traveling solo does not necessarily mean traveling alone. You will meet people…it’s inevitable. When you travel solo, you still crave social interaction. You’re likely to use an app to meet some new people and you’re more inclined to strike up a conversation with a stranger. In fact, when we travel with companions, we tend to stick with that companion and have no real need to meet new folks. Solo travel changes it.
Easier to stick to a budget
Sure…traveling with a companion means you get to split everything. But traveling alone means you will spend a lot less. You’re only buying enough for yourself and can aim for the less expensive options. A companion or group might shoot for the pricier restaurant but, on your own, you can pick up a light meal at a grocery shop. Sticking to a budget become immensely more manageable on your own. If you do go overboard one day, it’s easier to spend less the next day too.
Gain a better perspective
When we travel with a companion, we never see things through one lens. Our travel companions perspective is sure to rub off on us in one way or another. Traveling solo means your focus is not split between your own perspective and that of your companion. It’s easier to be more engaged and attentive to the place you are visiting. Not only that, you have more time to reflect on your experiences. After spending a day of exploring, you head back to your hotel left with your thoughts. This helps you gain an even more fulfilling experience.
Traveling solo also means anything that might come up is yours to handle. It’s all yours…you have to own it. But each time you challenge yourself, you will become more confident. Soon you’ll realize you can navigate a new city, communicate in a foreign tongue, and gain some practical skills. Solo travel can be transformative in that it will make you feel capable, independent, and definitely confident.
Have you traveled solo? What was your experience like? If you haven’t, would you give it a shot?
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