Have you ever dreamed of splurging on a romantic vacation to Paris, witness broad way plays in New York or be in love in Italy, but don’t have anyone to join you? Braving solo traveling might be the answer. For blogger, Jaclynn Seah of the OccasionalTraveller.com, traveling solo is the best and fastest way to understand yourself—what you’re made of and what you can do. It may seem a little scary at first, but with the right amount of knowledge and preparation, there’s no way it can be a disaster, here’s how:
Do the planning and research ahead of time
Any kind of travel must be well-thought and even more so, if you are traveling solo. You can start by looking up the tourist destinations and all other basic information then you can map out a daily itinerary. Downloading mobile applications widely used in the destination you are going to such as online navigation app, translator app etc. would greatly help too. Apart from the cool places to visit, never forget to also research about the tourist scams or traps to eliminate the possibility of falling prey to them. Remember, there is only one person you need to take into consideration—and that is you.
Keep and duplicate copies of important information
While your passport and other valuables must be highly guarded by you, contact information of the person in case of emergency, print-out airline tickets, hostel you are staying at and even the embassy of your citizenship/residency should also be secured. If possible, bring a photocopy with you in your carry-on bag and leave a duplicate copy in your check-in luggage.
Stay data connected
Life gets so much easier when you are traveling with internet connection. Use your data not only to navigate useful apps but also to check in with your family and friends back home from time to time. Keep them updated on your whereabouts which can be a simple post on Facebook or Instagram so they’d be less worried, too. Since staying connected can eat up your phone battery life, never forget to bring a fully charged power bank wherever you go.
Estimate your daily expenses and safe keep your monies
Depending on your itinerary, it will be helpful to manage your expenses so you still have more in the coming days of your tour. Moreover, leave some of your money locked inside your luggage at the hotel, do not bring them all at once to avoid temptation of spending them carelessly and just in case unfortunate situation arise that you get victimized by pickpocketing, at least you still have some left.
Explore with confidence
If you are lost, do not by any means, make it obvious. If you do, you are making yourself an easy target for scammers and criminals who are prying all over the place. Try your best to look confident as you walk along the streets, find a hotel or restaurant nearby where you can ask questions to a local staff and keep presence of mind. It seems cliché but don’t underestimate your instincts in times like this.
Experience your travel
It is your trip and yours alone, so do not stop yourself from experiencing whatever it is that you would like to try out. Eat the local dishes you want, travel at your own discretion and pace, take pictures on the places you’d like to go and go on an adventure! In solo traveling, you follow no one’s travel plans. Use this opportunity to discover not only place and people but above all—yourself.