Solo Travel

It’s been ages since I’ve done any real solo travel, but it was something I used to do rather frequently.  Since I’ve met my husband, he and I have done all of our travel together, with the exception of 1 trip I did back to Canada this past year.

Up until I met him, solo travel is what I knew best. My first trip abroad and subsequent trips were solo.  Since beginning my travel abroad, I have done trips with friends, and have still ventured on solo.

What I tell my friends about solo travel is that its great. It gives you a swift kick in the arse out of your comfort zone.  It teaches you to be on your toes creative, reliable and more open.

I promote solo travel.  I think you need to do it at some point in your life.  It’s a great experience that I think everyone needs – even if its something you never do again, it’s life enriching to do, if only once.

What don’t I tell my friends (or family) about traveling solo?

  1. Sometimes I get nervous.  If I enter a new city I’ve not been to, I do get a bit anxious trying to sort it all out, especially if it’s somewhere that the language isn’t English.  When I arrived in Bangkok for the first time, I was overwhelmed.  Both good & bad overwhelmed.  It was a matter of getting my bearings, figuring out my surroundings, and getting stuck in.
  2. I’m actually a bit shy and suffer from social anxiety.  Both things that no one knows me would actually ever think about me, I’m sure.  Sometimes I struggle to approach people in my hostel room, at a pub, or on a plane, etc.  It can be difficult to work up the energy to chat with someone, or to go do something (like eat in a restaurant) alone.
  3. Sometimes I wish I was doing it with someone.  There have been occasions where I wish I had someone with me so I could be in awe of something with someone, so I could have a conversation about something I just saw or did, or to have experiences with someone.
  4. My favourite accommodation for solo travel is a hostel because you tend to meet other solo travellers.  I fear that I’m ageing out of this option though and am going to start looking like the old creep in the room as I slowly slide further into my 30s.
  5. I typically do all of my research from other travel blogs, Trip Advisor and friends who have been to the destinations I’m planning on visiting.  I don’t usually rely on tourist offices.  If I’m looking for information, I’ll typically ask my bar tender, barista or waiter where they’d recommend.  I like to do as the locals do and rely heavily on this information.

As I find myself travelling with my husband now, I do enjoy it.  I love having someone with me who loves travel as much as I do, and someone to share in the experiences with.  My husband is a brilliant travel partner as he’s always keen to go somewhere new and typically lets me do the planning, which is great for me!

I do find a weird sense of awkwardness if we’re going somewhere I’ve been before – like I need to be on and I need to plan every single step and we do all the things I want.  I feel like I need to play tour guide, which doesn’t always work for me.  I want it to be a holiday as well, so its always nice when we get to go somewhere new together.

What is your preference – travelling alone or with friends?  How do you cope with both!?

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