A holiday trip with family or friends will always be one of the best experiences anyone could have. But there are those who believe that we also need to experience traveling alone at least once in our lives. Going to places you’ve never been before by yourself can be an effective way to recharge and even discover something new in yourself.
Of course, traveling alone especially to a new place can be overwhelming and worrisome. Don’t let this prevent you from exploring the world on your own. Travelocity, an American online travel agency, offers the following tips for first-time solo travelers to make the experience as pleasant and hassle-free as possible.
|Photo Credit: lightfieldstudios (via 123RF)|
1. Bring the Essentials
Make a list of things that you should pack for your getaway. Having a money belt will also give you peace of mind when it comes to your expenses. This handy and secure little pouch should have your credit and debit cards, emergency cash, and passport. Make sure that you have a portable charger for your phone. Not only will you need your phone to take pictures of places, but, more importantly, to serve as your lifeline should you get lost or be in need of help. Install navigating and translator apps so that the locals can understand you.
|Photo Credit: Iryna Gyrych (via 123RF)|
2. Don’t Forget the Travel Documents, IDs, and Apps
Even though you’ve researched thoroughly your destination, it is still easy to get lost in a foreign land. This is why it is important to keep your travel documents and identification cards with you all the time. You can make copies of important documents so that you don’t have to worry about damaging the original ones. To avoid getting lost, it is advisable to write down and study your route repeatedly in order to familiarize yourself with the place.
|Photo Credit: Aleksandr Davydov (via 123RF)|
3. Blend In
As you make copies of important documents, make sure to provide some to your trusted friends and families. These documents should include a copy of your passport, valid I.D., and itinerary with hotel information. In case you want to try the ride-sharing app in the country you’re visiting, make sure that the apps are secured and verified.
Travelocity also suggests not to stand out as a foreigner. Walk confidently and try not to make it obvious that you’re nervous, lost, or alone because there will be those who prey on confused tourists.
|Photo Credit: Antonio Guillem (via 123RF)|
4. Make New Friends
Traveling alone can give you the opportunity to meet other people. May it be a local or a fellow tourist, you could initiate a conversation with them to make new friends. However, remain vigilant. Remember that they’re still strangers and you shouldn’t give them personal information.
|Photo Credit: anyaberkut (via 123RF)|
5. Embrace Alone Time
This solo vacation is your opportunity to have some “me-time.” You could create a customized playlist of all your favorite songs that will match the scenery around you. Listen to these songs while you spend a day in the park or walk around the city. It is also a great time to try local food. Dining alone can be uncomfortable at first, but once you get used to it, you’ll learn that it is a relaxing experience.
|Photo Credit: Torwai Suebsri (via 123RF)|
6. Wear the Proper Attire
It is normal to be excited about filling your Instagram feed with fabulous photos and you will probably dress fashionably. But, take note that there are some countries and places where it requires to dress conservatively. As suggested by Ordinary Traveler, an award-winning adventure, travel and lifestyle blog, travelers should practice inconspicuous attire when they are in an unfamiliar place.
|Photo Credit: Fabio Formaggio (via 123RF)|
7. Drink but Don’t Get Drunk
The idea of going out in a foreign country and getting drunk is fun and thrilling. But, take note that you’re in an unfamiliar place and you’re a stranger in it. Do not advertise any personal information that might put you in harm. The world is not a perfect place and it is still important not to trust anyone quickly.