Guest Blog by Peter Minkoff writer at The Beard Mag in the U.K. @minkoffpeter on Twitter
Although most people travel the world as a family or in groups, going out on the road alone has some major benefits. You see, whenever you travel with others, you might be forced to make a compromise of sorts. There could be unnecessary and frequent stops, you may have to visit tours that aren’t of any particular interest to you or you may even have to change your means of transportation because of the group. None of this is an issue when you decide to travel alone. With this in mind, here are three great tips on how to travel the world solo.
- Think about the safety
Some people look for safety in numbers, but you can prepare for safety alone as well, as long as you adhere to several safety principles. First, believe your intuition. If you feel that something’s not right, just avoid it. After all, we survived millennia on this planet by trusting our instincts so why should this be any different?
Next, if you are traveling by car make sure to have safety precautions such as a spare tire and flares. In fact, it might be even better to replace all four tires before you head out, just to decrease the chances of something going wrong.
Finally, make sure your hotel is properly booked so you can avoid having to sleep in the car or at an undesirable motel. Before you head out, make a call to ensure your room will be waiting for you or print out all of your hotel confirmations.
- Pack like a pro
One of the greatest problems solo travelers run into is packing. Instead of overthinking it, focus on all of the essential which you’ll need during your journey. Of course you want to make sure you have everything you’ll need for varying weather conditions and different situational outfits but over packing can also be a problem, so only bringing pieces you’ll actually wear is a must. You should also chat with other travelers who have been to your destination before to hear their tips on what to pack and what might be unnecessary.
- Learn more
Finally, when traveling on your own you are much more likely to soak up more of the local culture as opposed to the times you are traveling with a group. When you travel with a friend, you are spending most of your trip socializing with them. However, once you are on your own, all your senses will be oriented outwards. You will be more likely to strike up conversations with locals, regardless if you do it in English or if you learn a couple of words of the region or even communicate using non-verbal communication (gestures, etc.). Additionally, you may be more inclined to actually listen to the tour guide and in this way learn a bit more about the customs and the history of the place. Make it a point to learn more when traveling solo. It will be an experience you wont forget.
Sure, traveling alone has its drawbacks like getting lonely, having no one to share costs with and having no support if something bad happens but nonetheless, it has numerous advantages and should always be tried at least once. Going out on your own can be a great milestone in your life, that empowers you to know you can rely on yourself instead of others.