The best way to embark on solo travel is to go out and do it. The endless travel stories, the people you meet, and the memories are something you will never forget. Travel may well be the best form of education. Here are my best 10 top tips for solo travel.
10 top tips for solo travellers
1. Stay safe
Travelling with friends or in a group is fun, but sometimes it is good to spend time on your own. However, always let someone know where you are and make sure you can call for help.
2. Try something new
Step out of your comfort zone and try something that you would not normally do at home. It could be pushing your limits or being well within your comfort zone. You will not regret it.
3. Get plenty of rest
Crazy nights of partying, hopping between cities, a lack of decent sleep and a poor diet are sure-fire ways to run yourself down. Rest is vital, so bank some early nights. Sleeping is tricky when the rest of the city is just coming alive. Trust me, your body will thank you for it.
4. Eat as well as you can
It is tempting to cut costs on food and eat on the move. Eat well and eat consistently and stock up with essentials, especially where food is limited. Hunger can strike at any time.
5. Respect local traditions and customs
This ensures smoother and easier travel. Wear appropriate clothing, and observe local customs, particularly during religious festivals. You are in another country, so abide by their rules, not yours.
6. Try and blend in
Whether you are a newbie traveller or a seasoned pro, do not arrive at your destination looking like you have just walked off a plane, even if you have. Think like a local, act like a local, be like a local.
7. Enjoy your own company
Travelling with friends or in a group is fun, but sometimes it is good to spend time on your own. Take a solo hike somewhere, enjoy your surroundings, and learn more about what you like and want. Be your own travel boss. You will learn to enjoy your own company. Once you are comfortable with yourself, you become comfortable in the company of others.
8. Take lots of photos
In addition to writing notes, taking photos is a given. Organise your photos as you travel. Imagine returning home and spending days sorting out thousands of random images.
9. Use local knowledge
Guide books and the internet are rich sources of information, but local knowledge is best. Make sure you talk to people as much as possible. Often they are happy to help, revealing things that guide books do not cover.
10. Keep positive
Accept the vicissitudes of travel, those missed connections, the changing weather and natural disappointments. The trick is to stay positive. Things always get better. And smile. Keep smiling.
So, why the wait? Enjoy these best 10 tips for solo travellers. Travel light, go out and do it.
Lonely Planet video of places to visit and tips for solo travellers.
Read our post on the best way to travel comfortably.