I recently had to use some vacation time and couldn’t find anyone to travel with me so I ended up going down to Tybee Island by myself. I got some mixed reactions when I told people I was traveling alone and I feel like there’s a weird stigma attached to it. I had a blast though so I thought I would share some of my reasons why a solo vacation might be ideal for you and some tips for planning your trip.
Can I afford it?
Realizing you have a different travel budget than your friends can cause friction. Either you stress out about money the whole time because you can’t afford the trip but don’t want to back out or you end up not getting to do everything you want or not going to a certain place because your friends can’t afford it. Traveling alone makes budgeting very easy since you can pick a trip that fits within your budget. There’s also less pressure to fill your days with expensive excursions and activities; you can do as much or as little as your budget allows.
*TIP: Determine your budget first then find a destination that matches it, not the other way around.
Is it safe?
As a single female vacationing alone, this is a crucial question. You have to be hyper-aware while traveling and be deliberate about not putting yourself at risk. This doesn’t mean you have to sit in your hotel room all day and never venture out. However, you need to use common sense and take precautions to lessen your vulnerability. For my trip to Tybee Island, it came down to location. I felt more comfortable staying at a family-friendly beach versus venturing out in a larger city alone.
*TIP: Carry a smaller purse or only take what fits in your pockets. The less you have on you when walking around, the less likely you are to be targeted.
*TIP: Be vague about where you are staying. And make up a boyfriend if you have to (ladies, you know we’ve all done it).
Will I get bored?
As the saying goes, only boring people get bored. I viewed my solo trip as an opportunity to relax, disconnect from the world, reconnect with myself and explore a new city. And the best part? You can do as much or as little as you want – it’s your vacation! I planned a few things to do but kept my schedule flexible. And unlike trips I’ve taken with my friends, I didn’t have to wonder if someone else was happy with the agenda or compromise and do something I wasn’t really interested in. As a result, I loved every minute of my trip.
*TIP: Research your destination in advance so you have a few ideas on what to do. Don’t feel limited to what you research though. Ask the locals where they like to eat or what they think are best-kept secrets in the city.
*TIP: Engage in conversation with the locals and/or fellow travelers. It breaks up the silence and you never know what you’ll end up talking about.
*TIP: Don’t be afraid to ask someone to take your picture!
There’s a lot more I can share but bottom line, traveling alone can be really fun and I think everyone should try it at least once. If you’ve traveled alone, what did you enjoy about it? What tips would you add to my list?