Why solo travel may not be for you

24.2.19


People have travelled solo for millennia and as an ambivert who likes doing their own thing, it definitely suits me. 

As fun as it is to travel with friends/family, there’s nothing better than the freedom of doing what you want, when you want without having to wait for anyone else.
But solo travel isn't everyone's cup of tea and it may be due to the following:

You crave attention

If you're not comfortable being alone, then solo travel is not for you. Whilst you do meet other people on your travels, you'll most likely spend most of it alone, meaning there’s no-one to shower you with compliments, to listen to your every word or even talk to at all.
NOTE: if you look foreign to the country you’re travelling to, then chances are you will get lots of stares, but that's not the good kind of attention.


You’re not willing to step out of your comfort zone

I'm going to Sri Lanka in April for my next solo trip and almost everyone I’ve told has said the same thing…’OMG YOU’RE SO BRAVE.’
I guess a woman (a black one at that) travelling to a different continent alone is quite brave, but I don’t see it like that. I’m going because it's somewhere I want to visit; the world is much bigger than the continent in which I reside.
The whole point of travelling - for me - is to explore and experience a different country’s culture, the food, the people. If you're not willing to embrace it and to try something new, then don't go.

You’re worried about what people will say

Don't you have people to go with?
Won’t you be bored?’ 
Why are you going alone?’ 

These are just a selection of the questions you’ll get as a solo traveller because those who aren't into solo travel don't understand its appeal. You may also get these questions - alongside several strange looks -  from the locals in the country you're visiting. Eating dinner alone is my least favourite part of solo travel because of this, but a girl needs to eat so I just get over it.



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You believe everyone should speak English

Oh, ignorant Westerner, why do you expect someone who lives 1000’s of miles away from you to speak the same language as you? Granted, English is one of the most spoken languages worldwide, but that doesn't mean everyone SHOULD speak it. Learning a few of the local phrases such as 'hello' and 'thank you' won't do you any harm.

You think travel is expensive

...whilst you walk around with your £1,000 iPhone and £300 Michael Kors tote.

Obviously, if you want to do the 5-star luxury holiday, then it will cost you some coins, but travel doesn’t have to be expensive and sacrificing some of the small things like that daily flat white can add up to a pretty decent travel fund.
Travelling around Europe (for now) is pretty cheap, but travel doesn’t always have to be in another country; admittedly, I had been guilty of thinking travelling involved leaving the country, but I was wrong




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Your planning skills leave a lot to be desired

Booking flights and accommodation, getting to and from said accommodation, planning your itinerary, finding the right transport, managing your budget - some of the key components of solo travel. All which you have to do by yourself because Google can't do it all for you.
If you can't plan for shxt and don’t know your Maps.Me from your Google Maps, then get yo' life together honey.
I’m a fairly organised person and find it much easier to work towards a plan; it doesn’t have to be set in stone as I like to keep it flexible, but having some kind of idea is important.

Having said all of that, I still believe everyone should travel solo at least once in their life, but there are some things you need to consider before embarking on your trip. The thought of being in another country alone might turn your stomach, but as with all things in life, it'll get better with experience and you might find that you actually enjoy it. Or it just might not be for you. Who knows?

Have you travelled solo before? If not, what's stopping you?

2 comments

  1. I definitely want to travel solo someday. This may sound like an excuse (I promise it's not) but I do love my job and taking days off to do so is difficult. And if I were to quit my job to travel, I'd have to be financially stable first. It's definitely part of my life goals and I hope I don't wait too long!

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    1. I hear you Shuana!
      I work full-time and enjoy my job, so have no plans to quit anytime soon, so I make the most of my holiday days.
      Quitting my job to travel isn't an option because my bank account isn't set up like that lol
      Go for it! Even a trip to another city :)

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