First Time Traveling Alone? Here’s a Lucky Set of 13 Solo Travel Tips From Travel Veterans!
• Posted in Travel
Congratulations, you’ve made the amazing decision to travel the world! You pictured yourself in the moments of what it would be like on your own in a new country for the very first time.
Imagine how you’d feel if you knew how to walk the walk and talk the talk, like you’ve done this a million times before. Just picture how amazing this first experience will be if you knew how to stay safe without restricting any of the fun and adventure!
The good news is that dreaming about the perfect first solo trip isn’t just a fantasy – it CAN happen. And all you have to do to learn all the basic you’ll need to know is to keep on reading . . .
1.) Research the laws and traditions.
Don’t go in blind! The cliché, “knowledge is power” has been around for good reason. In California and other parts of the United States, you can make a right turn if there are no upcoming cars on the road, but in other places, like Japan, it’s super illegal. So, be prepared! You’ll feel a lot more comfortable knowing what to expect as well knowing you’ll avoid some embarrassing (and potentially dangerous!) situations.
2.) Remain flexible in your schedule!
You are on your own and can make a change of plans if you want to. Go with the flow and take those opportunities if your gut says to – just don’t forget to tell a friend!
3.) Memories can be kept with more than just pictures.
Write in a journal about your adventures! Of course, still take take a copious amount of pictures!
But, sometimes only words will do. Many suggested having a summary of the day each night so that you can capture your feelings and thoughts as fresh as possible. And, trust that if you fight to stay up (because we know you’re having too much fun) and do it, your future self will forever thank you!
4.) Download Google Maps Offline
Internet connection isn’t everywhere! And even if you have a SIM card, you never know what could happen. This was one of our top recommendations from pro-solo travelers.
If you are in the market for a SIM card, look into an international one that will work everywhere if you’re doing a big sweep across the world. There are also some Europe exclusive cards that are more cost-effective if you’re just interested in that region.
5.) Buy a waterproof cell phone case!
This was recommended by many solo travelers . . . we recommend taking their word for it 😅
6.) Write and share the addresses of where you’re going to with a close friend or family member.
Letting someone (anyone!) know where you has never been stressed more than in the 127 Hours movie. In your research of laws and traditions, you’ll probably stumble across some cool finds, but be sure that in your written plans you write the exact addresses and share with your point of contact. You can still be flexible – we still want you to have fun! So, if you find something interesting, be sure to let your point of contact know!
A lot of travel enthusiasts have also been loving the Life360 app, which has real time location sharing and notifies your point of contact when you arrive or leave a place. That way if you do decide to be spontaneous and want to forget the little things for a bit, this may be a good option for you!
7.) Have copies of your passport with you.
While you’re at it, give your point of contact some of these as well. You 👏 Never 👏 Know 👏
8.) Have no idea what to even look into?
Research into free tours and multi-day bus/train passes. A lot of solo travelers found they not only were able to do the “classic” tourist-y things, but also were able to expand their searches with what they found from there~
9.) Still could use a little bit of company?
Consider booking a hostel! You’ll not only meet people from all parts of the world, but you’ll be able to explore together. They may know about a cool hole-in-the-wall you never came across in your research and vice-versa!
10.) Don’t skimp on safer, yet pricier modes of transportation, especially when you’re in an unfamiliar place!
Traveling can get expensive and while saving here and there one a few things is great, transportation is not one of them. This tip has been recommended time and time again by those we spoke with.
You did your due diligence to save up for the experiences, getting somewhere safely is part of the investment!
11.) Walk with confidence and conviction (even if you’re lost) and don’t be 100% honest with strangers.
Sadly, tourists can get taken advantage of. With the downloaded map on your phone, make it look like you’re texting. If you’re having a good time at a bar, just say you’re waiting up on some friends while having a nice chat.
While it is important not to live in constant fear and paranoia, you should always think of your safety first!
Now, that we know how to stay safe and prepared, let’s get to how to have fun!!!
12.) Keep cash of the same bills in different pockets!
This is a tip that a personal friend who is an avid hiker learned from a blind man. Really – he did. If you keep your $1, $5, $10, and $20 bills in four different pockets, you can still count your money without being obvious! On the outside, you’re just grabbing things out of everywhere.
$73 total? Count three bills in your $20 pocket, take one bill out of the $10 one, and count another three bills in your $1 pocket. You can do the same thing with spare change as well. Are you looking through all your pockets because you’re broke? Maybe, maybe not . . .
Before we leave you to start taking action, we want to share with you one more important tip:
13.) Pack lightly!
Remember, it’s just you and while you don’t want to run out of amazing outfits, you also don’t want to lug around extra baggage when you’ve got exploring to do!
WE DID IT — We went through the top 13 tips expert solo travelers wish they could tell their novice selves.
Now go out there and explore the world!
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