Embarking on an adventure with a party of one? No scarier departure. Waiting in the airport solo, fretting about everything that could go wrong, whilst still being giddy with excitement. Everyone loves the travel solo idea, and although exhilarating, certainly requires a little more forethought. There’s no safety net of mates to catch you before you fall down, just you, yourself and I. So here are five steps to solo adventure success, you’ll be travelling stress free in no time.
#1 Detail Your Plans
For your mum’s sanity please. Make sure you notify DFAT too. It’s a simple process but will save you the one thousand text messages if something of worldwide significance occurs while you’re abroad. Even if you’re being spontaneous, just leave a broader plan with your loved ones. For your safety and their piece of mind it’s an easy thing to do.
#2 Celebrate Your Solitude
You’re literally going to be spending time with yourself and no one else for a long time, learn to be selfish. Go to the movies by yourself, shop alone, eat alone and celebrate your isolation. Have a contingency plan for boredom, download a mammoth amount of shows to binge watch and load up your Kindle with reading material. Celebrate the solo life before so you’re ready to handle everything the trip throws at you. You’re guaranteed to feel isolated at one point or another so make the most of your own company.
#3 Read Up About Your Destination
Not as obvious as it sounds, you’re the captain of this ship without assistance, so you’re going to need to do more research than usual. If you’re not the guidebook type or the usual leader of travel plans it’s important to read up on cultural practices and laws at the very least. Dress right, know what’s offensive and learn the tipping culture before you travel solo. From here you can jump into the fun stuff, the niche bars, where to stay and hidden gems in each of your stops. Intensive research that won’t bore you to tears.
#4 Budget Extra
Budget and then budget more. Travelling alone means no splitting bills, no free meals and barely any free drinks. Singletons already have to deal with the accomodation levy, not an official tax on the solo but most rooms are built for travelling pairs. So unless you’re planning to hostel it everywhere you go, factor that into your cash plan. If you’re going to cook spreading out leftovers won’t be as easy, unless you travel with an arsenal of tupperware in tow. Think about this stuff before you leave and you won’t find yourself existing on two minute noodles by the end of the trip.
#5 Reach Out To People
Work that network of yours. If you’re brave enough to travel solo into the world without a companion, I suspect you’re confident enough to ask for a favour. Leverage your high school pen pal, your mum’s aunt’s sister in Marrakesh, or a mate who has a comfy couch in Berlin. Every favour will put you in a new situation and further out of your comfort zone, which is exactly what you want, yeah? Solo travel doesn’t have to be lonely, you just have to know when to ask.