Not many people decide to go on a journey without noisy company or close friend. But solo trips, undoubtedly, have many advantages: it is an opportunity to be alone with yourself and your thoughts, this time, free from compromises. When traveling alone, you only do what you want. But it should be especially careful and cautious. We have prepared for you 10 tips that will help make traveling without traveling companions safe and interesting.
1. Do not try to save on security.
Traveling alone is rarely economical: if you go on a trip without a company, be prepared to spend more than if you went together with a friend. You will not be able to divide the dinner for two, you will have to pay the rent of the car in full, as well as a taxi from the airport. And the first thing you come across is the prices for single rooms in hotels. Often, single rooms are more expensive than double rooms. But saving on the hotel is definitely not worth it: do not take a hotel on the outskirts of the city, especially when traveling alone. It is better to pay more, but live in a safe area.
The next item of expenditure is airfares. They are also better to take as comfortable as possible, and comfortable ones are often not the cheapest. Flights that fly to a destination at night may cost less, but think about how you will get from the airport with a suitcase in an unfamiliar city at night. Solo travelers should be especially careful about their security and not try to save money at its expense.
2. Familiarize yourself with the culture of the country in advance.
Before you go to a new country for yourself, do not be lazy to read a little about the features of its culture – pay special attention to gestures (in some countries, innocuous gestures and symbols for us may mean something offensive), the rules of behavior in society and the requirements for clothes. What we are accustomed to consider the norm, for some cultures may be unacceptable. But you can avoid conflict, which is especially important if you are traveling alone.
Try to learn a few phrases in the language of the country you are traveling: from simple “good afternoon” and “thank you” to “I got lost” and “call the doctor”. It will not take a lot of time and at the same time will significantly simplify your stay in an unfamiliar country or even help you in a difficult situation.
3. Do not keep all documents and money in one place.
It is better to keep documents in the safe in the hotel, but you should only carry copies with you. Like money: do not take all the cash at once and do not keep all the money in one pocket. Even if you are used to wearing everything in your wallet, put a few bills in different pockets, in a cosmetic bag or in a bag for a camera. It is better to try to foresee even the worst variants of succession of events and to protect oneself from troubles. And do not forget to warn your bank about your movements – otherwise you risk remaining with a blocked card at the most inopportune moment.
4. In local bars and cafes, sit behind the bar.
Of course, this option is not for those who went on a solo journey in the hope of being alone with themselves and keep quiet. If you are open to new acquaintances, or just not averse to exchanging a few phrases about the weather, the traditional dish or exhibition in the nearest museum with locals and the same tourists as you, then in cafes and bars prefer the bar counter – everything has to communicate.
5. Keep a diary
Not only take pictures, but also record the most vivid observations and impressions: most of you will not remember much soon, and no one will remind you of the details of the journey. If you have the opportunity to return to them again and again, you can keep them in memory for a long time and relive the best stories from the trip. Start a big travel diary, where you will record all your travel notes, or start the tradition of buying a small notebook on the first day in a new city and dedicating it to one trip.
6. Trust people, but do not let your guard down.
When traveling, many people experience fear and distrust of others, especially when there are no friends around. Anywhere in the world you will be treated more hospitably and friendlier if you are open and friendly. Do not think that the person to whom you gave the camera, will certainly run away with him. Do not expect that the merchant in the market will surely try to deceive you, and in transport you will certainly be robbed. Do not overload yourself with negative thoughts and constant fears, but do not let your guard down. When asking someone to take a picture of you, choose older people or families with children. Smile to the merchant and carefully count the change. Enjoy the views of the city in the bus window, but keep your bag to yourself. And the important rule of safe travel without traveling companions – do not tell everyone that you are traveling alone.
7. Share your plans with loved ones.
A simple rule that does not require much effort from you, but will significantly secure your trip: communicate your plans to any of your loved ones – mom, girlfriend, subscribers in social networks. You are going on an excursion to a neighboring town, you want to fly in a balloon, just plan to swim all day in the sea – be sure to inform about it. No one doubts your prudence, but anything happens in life, and anyway, at least someone should know where you are and where you plan to go further.
8. Meet new people
The best way to get to know a new country and get the most out of your trip is to communicate more with the locals. No guidebook will show you all the most interesting places in the city, will not tell you where the best breakfasts are, and will not share where to look for non-standard souvenirs to friends. We have already talked about how easy it is to start a conversation with a stranger – try to master the art of small talk on a journey, as you will practice at the same time in knowledge of foreign languages.
9. Sometimes deviate from the intended plan.
Do not try to paint every minute of your journey – of course, it’s great if you have different options every day where to go and what to do. But do not drive yourself into the frame, otherwise the journey will turn into a mad race. Did it rain and you can’t go on a city tour? Embark on a gastronomic tour of restaurants or arrange yourself unplanned shopping in the mall. Waves raging on the sea and you can not swim? Give yourself a day in the SPA or go on a photowalk. There are no trips without accidents – but you can organize some pleasant surprises for yourself.
10. Turn off the phone often
Give yourself a real vacation, including from gadgets and social networks. Disable work mail, do not go into chat rooms and do not scroll through the instagram tape every half hour – it will all be waiting for you when you return home. Just turn off your phone often and enjoy every moment of the trip. But do not forget to warn loved ones that for some time you will be without communication, and you’ll still have your phone with you just in case.
You shouldn’t be afraid of solo travels: do not forget to be cautious and friendly, and then your trip will not bring unpleasant surprises. If the next time you do not coincide with vacation schedules with friends, you can not unanimously decide where to go, or just want to take a break from everything, then feel free to go on a trip alone. On such trips, you not only recognize the world around you, but also rediscover your inner world.