Traveling solo for the first time can be one of the scariest things you ever decide to do. However, that doesn’t mean you should avoid doing it altogether. Traveling solo could be one of the most fulfilling things you decide to do, too – it can help you to learn so much about yourself, and open your eyes to brand new cultures and perspectives. It can change you as a person for the better!That being said, you shouldn’t book your solo travel expedition before you’ve done a little research first. Here are 14 tips that first time solo travelers will find useful:
Download Apps To Make Your Adventure Less Stressful
Before you even get to where you’re heading to, look up apps and download the ones you feel could make your journey much less stressful. For instance, a maps app could help you to find where you’re going so you don’t feel lost, and a translation app could help you when there’s the chance communication issues might get in the way. There are all kinds of apps out there that could help, whether you want an app that will tell you the best place to eat or an app that will find you the cheapest flight. Make sure you have them ready!
Learn A Few Key Phrases
Although you might have a translation app at your disposal, you’re probably going to want to learn a few key phrases on top of this, just in case. What do you think you’re going to need to ask/say the most?
How much is this?
Where is the toilet?
Can I have?
How are you?
My name is…
Sorry, I don’t understand
Learning these short and simple phrases could change your entire trip for the better.
Be Aware Of The Culture
Make sure you’re well aware of the culture of the place you’re visiting before you arrive. Know the offensive signs and signals especially, as things we do in our own countries may be offensive ind others. Even things that are positive in our own countries can be negative in other countries! Make sure you know how to blend in, too. One of the most uncomfortable experiences you’ll have is people staring at you because you look like too much of a tourist. This is fine if you don’t mind people staring, but sometimes, they might even ask for a picture!
Research Your Accommodation Carefully
Make sure you take the time to research your accommodation carefully. Make sure it has some great reviews and that you know you’re going to be well looked after there – this is a must as a first time solo traveler. Hostels may help you to save money, but that doesn’t mean they’re necessarily the best option. Looking for a service residence that offers things like free wi-fi, pools, and gym facilities could help you to take your trip from good to amazing. Make sure you make your reservations in advance, and ensure you give plenty of notice if you need to cancel, or you’ll still lose money.
You’re not going to want to lug around a heavy case for the duration of your trip, so get on board with packing light. Roll things up rather than folding them, and make the most of the shoes in your case by stuffing them with pants and socks. This can help you to save space and pack more efficiently. Weigh your bag before you leave to avoid trouble at the airport.
Try To Arrive During The Day Time
Arriving to an unfamiliar place is much less scary in the day time. Arriving at night time can be stressful for an inexperienced traveler, so check your flight and transport details carefully.
Don’t Always Follow An Itinerary
Following your itinerary down to a T could mean you miss out on more spontaneous activities and fun stuff with other people. Don’t be afraid to stay flexible – it’s one of the biggest perks of traveling solo!
Make Sure People Know Where You’re Going
If you’re going somewhere alone on any given day, make sure you leave a note in your room. Write out where you’ve gone and when you expect to be back. You could also send a text or message back home, just in case.
Don’t Drink Too Much
Having a couple of drinks is fine, but drinking too much is a bad idea. You don’t want to get black out drunk and have no recollection of where you’ve been and what you’ve done. You could end up in a police cell, or in a lot of trouble.
Learn To Trust Your Gut
One of the biggest skills you can have as a solo traveller is knowing when to trust your gut. The gut and the brain are different things. Your gut might be telling you to go off and do that fun thing, while your brain might be saying don’t do it. Know the difference and you’ll have a much better time.
Enjoy Your Own Company
Don’t try to get away from yourself on your trip. Meeting new people is fine, but enjoy your own company just as much. Use this as an opportunity to learn more about yourself than ever before.
Start Your Day Early
There’s a huge amount of pleasure to be had in getting up and starting your day before everybody else. You’ll be able to beat the crowds and do everything you want to do before chilling out in the evening.
Go Off The Beaten Path
You don’t have to do something just because it’s ‘the norm’ in a place. Don’t feel under pressure. Just do the things that call out to you!
Don’t Live Behind Your Camera Lens
Taking pictures is great, but don’t live behind the lens. Make sure you’re really taking it in and experiencing it all first hand. Live in the moment!
Use these tips when you go on your first solo adventure and you should have the time of your life!