What no one tells you about Solo Travel

I wrote this post about how much I love solo travel and while I want to keep this blog positive, I think it’s only fair to share all sides of that.

While I still encourage people to go on at least one solo trip abroad in their lifetime, and I will continue to plan my trips with or without friends here’s a few things you may not expect to happen:

  • One of my big points for solo travel was the freedom that comes with it. You can do whatever you want, whenever you want! The only downside is that doing whatever you want whenever you want is hard if you’re feeling indecisive! This past trip I had an idea what I wanted to do but left a lot of days open to see where I wanted to go and I had the hardest time making decisions! I never realized how go with the flow I am because sometimes when traveling I’ll just ask the other person what they want to do and we’ll do that and being solo for a while I started procrastinating leaving certain places because I was so unsure about what to do next. I made a decision and leapt for it and it all worked out in the end.

 

  • You may not get as many pictures of yourself places. OK I know everyone loves a selfie stick but I just love my camera and coming up with creative shots that aren’t selfies. I have found that if you go anywhere touristy there are likely other people taking pictures and if I see a couple or a group of friends I will offer to take a shot of them and I’ll ask if they can snap one for me. This has always worked out and people are usually so happy to have a picture together! I think people want to ask sometimes and are hesitant. But I have done this for people when we haven’t even spoken the same language and it all worked out. And if they trust me with their camera, I can trust them for a second with mine. (Honestly, even before social media existed I loved photography and enjoyed taking classes about it. I care about photos and I’ve always enjoyed taking them whether it’s to make other people feel happy or beautiful or just to capture a special moment even if I never share some of them.)

 

  • I get asked a lot how I avoid being lonely. I truly enjoy my own company. But, I try to make friends and ironically make way more friends when I’m traveling alone anyways. Whether it be other tourists or locals, just smile and try to find common ground. When in Italy, talk about futbol. 🙂 If I ever start to feel lonely I go for a walk or find something interesting to do. Normally when I’m going, going, going it doesn’t even occur to me to feel lonely! The only time I wished someone was with me was usually when a little hiccup would happen because it would’ve been nice to look over at a familiar face and laugh about it.

 

  • You won’t always feel welcome at restaurants. Usually everyone in Italy is so extremely warm & friendly but restaurants weren’t always welcoming if I wanted to sit and eat or have a drink. It’s the busy season and I’m taking up space at a table where 4 other people could be sitting. I was actually shooed away from one place when I said it was just one! I didn’t encounter this all the time but I realize where they’re coming from. On the flip side, when you’re alone sometimes you’ll get a drink sent you 🙂

 

  • You can’t get too tipsy. Of course I went to that party I was invited to at a private villa! But when no one was looking I was pouring my drink out onto the grass. I don’t want to expect the worst from people and I’m confident I made pretty safe decisions but if you’re a girl traveling alone you have to keep your head about you and that means you can’t drink too much or put yourself in dangerous situations.

 

  • You need to pay more attention to your things. You should always try to be observant of your surroundings but even more when you’re solo. I had to keep an eye on my belongings at all times and this was tricky when I wanted to go swimming and leave my stuff for a minute. Most of the time I would look for people who looked like they were tourists as well and for this reason I would sometimes pay for a bed on the beach because I feel like they help to watch your things some and it occurred to me if my neighbors on the beach were willing to pay for a bed too, they’re probably not interested in any of my stuff. In fact, at Arienzo beach someone left a bag with an iPad and a whole bunch of stuff. I’m sure the owner was flipping out when they realized it was left. But I watched a boy turn it into the staff so keep in mind there are good people everywhere. 🙂

 

I really do try to keep things positive always & I hope none of these things come across as negative or discouraging because I’m such a fan of solo travel! Part of the reason I started this blog is because I want to inspire others and encourage them to see the world! These are all thoughts I had the past few weeks and it is a truly different experience than going with a friend so I wanted to depict that.

Another thing no one tells you about solo travel is that it will become addictive! I do feel like travel humbles you while building your confidence at the same time. Travel is my favorite hobby and has gifted me with my favorite adventures.

33 thoughts on “What no one tells you about Solo Travel

  1. Thank you for sharing about your experiences as a solo traveler. I too often travel alone, though in the past I had no choice as I had no friends… Hopefully the trend is turning and people see how valuable and awesome solo travel can be sans loner connotations. It’s actually a very brave and as you said on the other post a liberating experience! 💕

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have to say I do think it’s catching on and we will see it becoming more & more popular! I bet those experiences were incredible for you and I”m so glad you can relate to me 🙂 Yes, I agree I absolutely feel very free & liberated by it! So glad you got the chance to do solo travel as well!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m so with you on this! I went on holiday by myself last year to Boston, Washington and Maine and it was the best holiday I’ve ever been on! Like it sounds so silly to say but you literally can do whatever you want! I watched a whole series of How to Get Away with Murder on Netflix and I didn’t feel a single bit of guilt hahah. Love Positano! ❤

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Though I’ve never had the opportunity to travel solo, I’ve found moments on business trips and family trips to escape for a few hours. That gave me time to wander the streets of Aix-en-Provence, grab a cappuccino in Rome and make a new friend –at least for an hour — who showed me the sights of San Antonio, Texas, from the rooftops. Then I went back to work or my family a little richer for the experience. I can imagine a whole trip on my own but I’m happy for these solo moments.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Yes, even when I travel with friends sometimes I do the same and take an hour to go read at a cafe and have a cappuccino. I enjoy both being with friends and being solo but it’s an interesting, special time alone and I absolutely think I wouldn’t have had the same experience if I was traveling with someone.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I also enjoy solo travel as much or more than traveling with friends or family and I agree with all your comments. The one thing that I would also add is that it can be more expensive to be on your own if you pay for lodgings – many places charge the same for one person as for two.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Traveling solo is an experience I would encourage for anyone to take on! I was 21 the first time I traveled alone throughout Europe. I was actually miserable a lot of the time, but I wouldn’t trade the experience for anything! Once I got used to it, I learned to love traveling on my own. It’s such an introspective time. You learn so much about yourself!

    Liked by 1 person

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