Taking the first step to #Solo Travelling
I have lost count of the number of times that I’ve been asked “How do you do it, How do you manage to travel by yourself?” and honestly each time I hardly ever had the right answers because each journey has come with a different experience; high-points as well as its challenges.
I have however, over the years picked up on a few pointers on how to better go about it and have decided on sharing the little that I have learned.
Yes, solo travelling is scary at first but once you get use to it, it becomes so much easier and will have you wondering what you were ever afraid of to begin with.
At this point I tend to fear smaller insects more than I fear getting onto a plane headed towards unfamiliar ground.
So here it is, there is honestly no right way to actually do it because I guess every one experiences things differently. However, what I can advise, to help you get in the swing of things is;
First establish what type of travel experience you want and where you want to go to. I advise you start somewhere close, neighbouring countries to be more specific depending on where in the world you might find yourself. At a later stage when you learn to be more comfortable out in the world on your own, you can then take on more countries or even different continents.
Do as much research as possible, in this case Google and TripAdvisor are your best friends. Look into finding any and everything about your place of choice. This can range from how to get there, the currency they use, accommodation (Airbnb, hostels, BnB, hotels), safety, transport on the ground, activities, people’s way of life, among other things. In addition look for good travel deals and discounts. Alternatively if you are not big on planning trips on your own you could always consult travel agents to get the job done for you.
Then set a budget that suits you. Look at how much you are willing to spend, as it will help you determine what you can or cannot afford. However, one thing I would say is never wait till you have ‘MORE THAN ENOUGH MONEY’ because that tends to hold a lot of people back as money really won’t ever be enough, honestly. So, try to stretch out what you have and travel unapologetically within your means. Go for the experience!
Draft up an itinerary as this will help you to not forget anything. Clearly jot down what you want to do during your stay in a specific place and allocate dates and times for each of the things you would like to experience. During this process, to make things easier for yourself also write down all contact information of services that you will need.
Start saving up for your trip and all its costs, remember that every dollar counts. So if you have extra money laying around put it towards your travel fund. It goes a long way.
As you wait to go on your trip, in your free time if you are big on the usage of social media, search up all locations you plan on visiting, so that you will have an idea of what these places of interest look like. Cafe’s, museums, local markets, wild life parks just to name a few are things you should consider. Figure out if they are fun experiences, can you learn any interesting facts from these places? Are they picture worthy? Among other things.
Last but not least build up the confidence you need. This will at least get you to a point where you can talk to one or two people while on your trip. Never be afraid because, believe you me the person who may seem like a stranger is just on a similar journey as you are. A journey to explore and see the world. Remember to always be open minded, however, within the same breath remember that you do not have to force yourself to talk to any other tourist if you are not comfortable at the start. As time passes it will get easier.
I’ll end this off with highlighting once again that Solo travelling is not as complicated as your mind makes it out to be, it’s really so very simple. It just requires a person who is willing and daring enough to take it on. I wish you all who plan on solo travelling the best. Always remember that you are able. Have fun!