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Solo travel

Manchester, United...
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1 post
30 reviews
Solo travel

What advice would you give for someone travelling alone ?

18 replies to this topic
Australia
Destination Expert
for Singapore, Bargain Travel, Holiday Travel, Singapore
Level Contributor
27,582 posts
1. Re: Solo travel

There are various solo travel advice topics linked into this forums Top Questions section. You can see Top Questions at the top right-hand side of this page if you are on the full website, not when using the awful limited Tripadvisor APP. Maybe read through those topics. Plus, read through some of the topics asked in the forum recently, maybe browse the first dozen pages for recent ones.

I always travel solo. My advice - decide what you want to do and where you want to stay, pick what suits YOU, research everything, be flexible and enjoy exploring a city or place on your own. Don’t think of solo travel as less than or somehow missing out on anything by not travelling with others. I’d hate to travel with other people. I enjoy solo travel.

Seattle
Level Contributor
51,997 posts
22 reviews
2. Re: Solo travel

Where are you going?

Different advice if you are going solo to Paris or Rome, or you are going solo to a beach vacation in the Caribbean or Hawaii, or you are treking in the Himalayas :)

Edited: 11 October 2018, 04:28
I wander the world
Level Contributor
4,822 posts
25 reviews
3. Re: Solo travel

Be open to new experiences, have a grand time. Remember you are a guest in another country, behave as a good guest. Don't plan every minute of every day, magic happens in the unplanned space.

Seattle
Level Contributor
51,997 posts
22 reviews
4. Re: Solo travel

Keep your passport and money safe. When you're traveling by yourself you don't have anyone to fall back on.

r c
Portland, Oregon
Level Contributor
9,595 posts
1 review
5. Re: Solo travel

welcome,

there is also a search function on each board.

good luck

London, United...
Destination Expert
for Solo Travel
Level Contributor
11,103 posts
28 reviews
6. Re: Solo travel

Even more than when you travel with others, serendipity is your friend.

If you are going someplace you have never been before, look at a guidebook. You can get one from the library as it doesn't have to be completely current. Updating of information can be done on the internet.

The guidebook is to give you an overview rather than specific information. The internet works best when you know the questions. The guidebook helps you know what the questions need to be.

I particularly like the Lonely Planet Guides for the history and cultural background they give as well as the sections on safety and woman travellers but others prefer the Rough Guides or something else,

People who live in the places Rick Steves writes about do not like his guides and question the information he gives but they do sell to lots of people.

Solo travellers can change plans in a second, without negotiation or discussion. Take full advantage of that.

Have a plan, but be able to follow your nose when something interesting arises.

Visit the local Tourist Office at your destination, if there is one. They often have discounts and information that is purely local.

I like staying is small family hotels where possible. I find they often take an interest in my comfort and safety that can be helpful.

Use the destination forums and ask before you book. I say this as someone who leapt with delight at a flight to Istanbul leaving from Gatwick (which is an easier airport for me than Heathrow) not appreciating that the airport the flight flew into (Sabiha Gokcen) is much further out and made it more difficult to get to Sultanahmet in the centre of Istanbul.

If I had looked at the forum first, I would not have booked that flight. Fortunately, the posters in the forum enabled me to rescue the mistake by giving me contact details for a shared taxi service but even so, it took a good two hours to get to my hotel.

There will be times when you feel apprehensive but take that as a sign that you are learning and pushing your own boundaries, something you can apply to your everyday life.

When you travel solo it is particularly important not to get drunk with strangers. There is no one you can count on to watch your back. On the other hand, two drunk people are no safer than one.

I think good travel insurance matters whether you are solo or with a group, but on your own there is no one who can come to the rescue if your credit card is maxed out.

No matter how young, healthy and/or well off you are, you need it.

Many years ago, on a January trip to California, I hit a tree when sledding in Idyllwild. The next day I couldn't move.

Fortunately my travel companion had taken out travel insurance for all of us so the visits to a doctor, the nurse that came out to assess the situation and accompany me back to London, the ambulances that took me to LAX and from Heathrow and the 4 seats across which my stretcher sat on the plane home were all paid for by the insurance company. It would have cost thousands and thousands without travel insurance.

I buy an annual policy so I don't need to think about it more than once a year.

As long as the UK remains in the EU, the EHIC (free upon application) covers medical treatment in EU countries on the same basis as for residents of that country but it doesn't cover repatriation, so travel insurance can be worth it even for EU countries. (and of course, it is likely to end if a full Brexit happens)

Solo travel lets you immerse yourself in your destination, undistracted by travel companions. At times it can be scary or lonely, but it teaches you much more about yourself and about your destination than you can ever discover when you don't go alone.

Edited: 11 October 2018, 14:38
Level Contributor
1 post
23 reviews
7. Re: Solo travel

I travel solo all the time. When I first started my biggest fear was my safety traveling as young woman alone. Things I did during my first trips to make me feel safe and comfortable also cost me a little extra money (but to me it was worth it). I stayed only in hotels with wifi and transfer services/access to taxis. I kept mace in my purse. I used my ATM card in the airport and tried not to carry a lot of USD on me. I kept my passport in the room locked, but if that wasn't an option, I kept it on me under my clothing. I made sure to check out safety for the places I hoped to go. I also made sure that the activities that I wanted to do in that country did not take a huge commute to get to (road traffic accidents abroad are my worst nightmare). I always carried 2 types of credit cards with me. When choosing places to stay, stay where there is wifi, and the capability to help with obtaining taxis or transfer services for you. I also stayed at resorts at first and slowly branched out to explore the neighboring areas. I would heavily research everything before I arrived and had my itinerary set before I arrived.

After a couple of trips, I began to feel more comfortable and stayed in hostels, now traveling city to city, country to country with no issues or concerns. Now I make up my itinerary as I go. I am more relaxed. I still keep 2 cards on me and a decent amount of currency on me (but only what I will need for that day). I also still only stay in places that have wifi (I don't buy a SIM card, so I need to communicated with the outside world somehow.)

I also make sure I know what I will need to enter the country visa/immunization wise so that getting through immigration and customs is a breeze. If possible I get my visas ahead of time. I also try not to check my luggage (not always possible) but I try.

Seattle
Level Contributor
51,997 posts
22 reviews
8. Re: Solo travel

I choose places with good public transportation, so I don't need to worry about renting a car or driving.

1 post
9. Re: Solo travel

I want to go on a vacation but the thought about going alone scares me! Are there any groups I should go through?

r c
Portland, Oregon
Level Contributor
9,595 posts
1 review
10. Re: Solo travel

welcome 50,

you may want to consider starting your own NEW post. that way it will get the answers specific to your question. Its is common for any board/forum, not just TA, unless the question is similar in nature.

Also, if you look at the bottom of the posts, there is a box to check for "get notified by email when a reply is posted" and the original OP may get your spam.

Also, if you decide to do a new post, you may want to give more info about yourself, like where you are from, age and maybe any interests and budget (range).

good luck

Edited: 09 November 2018, 23:30
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