Travel is full of important decision and a successful trip requires a lot of planning. The first decision one has to make before deciding to travel is deciding which country to visit, how much to spend and when it is best to go.
I have been travelling for a couple of months now and from these experiences I have learnt a lot. It is the first time that I have been away from home and I had to learn to be more independent. It was very overwhelming and pretty nerve wrecking in the beginning but I ended up adapting so quickly to it as I had no other choice. A lot of people were quite surprised when I announced that I wanted to travel alone as I have always been a bit shy and relied a lot on others. Well, it was time for me to prove everyone wrong and challenge myself!
There are many travelers who claim that traveling alone is the best way to see the world. They believe that when you travel alone you experience the world the way you want to without the influence of a friend or partner’s preferences. Travelling alone is more likely to be a voyage of self- discovery.
As I already mentioned travelling presents a lot of tests. Still, there are two main concerns for many solo travelers. The first one is safety. One cannot deny that some countries are statistically safer than others for those travelling alone. The other concern is choosing a country where you can easily interact with locals and be accepted.
I stayed in hostels where it was very easy to meet people and made friends from every corner of the world. Many backpackers also end up in shared apartments. I had just finished my degree and since the subject I studied was very much in demand I found it was very easy to find work, I must say I was a bit lucky. However, I must say that everyone I met while travelling found it easy to find a job, either in bars or fruit fields.
I am going to give you some tips to careful planning:
- Read upon your destination: Try to obtain as much information as possible before you leave. Get to know the customs, visa requirements, laws and something about the medical care and transportation system in the country you are visiting.
- Get a guidebook: Guidebooks usually include maps, keywords and information about that particular country. Also, download offline maps before you travel, internet is not always available.
- Get up early: Waking up early can be a difficult task for some however, it has a lot of advantages. You can have all the attractions to yourself while avoiding long queues and crowds. It is also the perfect time for photos due to the soft diffused light.
- Meet the locals: Make it a point that you start a conversation and interact with local people. Basic English is spoken in the majority of the counties, so it is easier for you to communicate with them than you might think. If not use body language and gestures. Getting to know a country from a local point of view is much better and will enrich your travelling too.
- Take lots of photos: Photos last a lifetime and capture the memories for ever. You may only see these breathtaking places and meet these people once in your life. So, remember to keep your camera handy and take a lot of photos.
- Be open minded: Do not judge the way other people live and do things. Just because they do it in a different way than you are used to doesn’t mean it’s wrong. Learn to listen to opinions you don’t agree with and do things in a matter you are not used to. Embrace different cultures, you will be surprised with what you will learn in the process.
This has been my experience on my first solo trip. I encourage all those people who are considering it to go for it. This experience will help you grow and challenge yourself. From experience I can tell you that this experience made me feel more powerful and independent.