A Frugal Guide to Traveling Solo

in Tips

We’d all love to enjoy traveling companions when we set off on our next adventure. But coordinating the schedules and budgets of your nearest and dearest can be trying. Don’t let your pals hold you back from discovering the world. Just read on to learn our tips for traveling solo on a budget!

A positive attitude is the key to enjoying your solo voyage. And there are certainly plenty of reasons to smile when you’re setting off on your own. Firstly, when you’re the only one to consider, you can call all the shots. You can see what you want, eat what you want, and do it all on your own schedule. No more worrying about finding restaurants to suit your vegan pals, picky eaters, or more affluent friends. No more whining about early morning starts or accommodation that doesn’t quite meet their standards. And none of that drama that invariably comes when people in the group disagree! Don’t be surprised if your solo voyage is far less stressful than any trip you’ve take with your mates or family members!

Without worrying about others, you’ll have time to really focus on what you want out of your vacation. You can take in your surroundings, content in the knowledge no one will pull you away to see the next thing. You also have the opportunity to exist without the preconceptions of others. We all act a certain way when we’re around people we know. Traveling alone is a great way to find your true self.

It’s also a rare opportunity for personal growth. Without others to rely upon, you’ll find yourself becoming more self-sufficient. You’re likely to be challenged, as travel plans rarely run smoothly, but overcoming setbacks will make you stronger and more confident.

When you travel solo you’re also more likely to meet new people. Groups of tourists tend to isolate themselves from others, enjoying their own company without paying much attention to those around them. In contrast, solo travelers are much more approachable, especially to other vacationers enjoying their own solo adventure. The experiences you have with locals and other tourists will make your stay truly memorable.

Of course we’d be remiss if we didn’t mention the drawbacks of traveling solo. You’ll need to be prepared to eat many meals alone, and that can be uncomfortable, particularly in a restaurant. If this bothers for you, look for European and Asian-style eateries with communal tables or opt for street food on the run. Thankfully both these options tend to be kind of your budget!

You can also find yourself feeling alone if you’re in a foreign country where you don’t speak the language. On occasions you might struggle to find people that understand you, particularly if you enjoy traveling off the tourist path. Hostels and pubs are usually cultural melting pots, so they make great hang outs if you’re feeling isolated.

Don’t be surprised if a little loneliness creeps in too. It can be tough eat an amazing meal or see an incredible sight without someone else to share it with. In these instances, remember your smart phone. Sometimes posting a photo to your social networking site of choice is all it takes to feel a little more connected. Just make sure you avoid those hefty cell phone fees!

If the drawbacks haven’t turned you off, read on to discover our tips for making the most of your solo vacation. Forget the hotels and opt for hostels instead. The communal atmosphere helps keep the loneliness at bay. They’re also one of the cheapest forms of accommodation, which is important when there’s no one else to share the costs. Many also have planned activities like walking tours and pub crawls. Participating in these are affordable ways to see the sights and meet other travelers.

No matter whether you’re in your accommodation or venturing out, it’s important to be bubbly and outgoing. Introducing yourself to others with a big smile is often all it takes to kick-start a friendship. This can be difficult for introverts, but pushing yourself out of your comfort zone will pay dividends. Buying some cheap beer to share or cooking meals in the hostel’s communal kitchen are good tactics for starting conversations if you’re shy.

Girl Taking a Photo on Cell PhoneBut there’s more to solo travel that simply staying social. When you don’t have someone else to look out for you, it’s even more important to think of safety first. Don’t walk around isolated places at night alone, and keep your guard up at all times. Project an air of confidence and take extra safety measures with your money and other valuables.

And above all, have fun. Traveling solo can be a wonderful and affordable experience for anyone with the right attitude!

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