Tips for Traveling Alone

You do not need to travel with a friend or loved one to have a great experience. Going on a trip on your own can help you learn about yourself. You also can do what you want instead of doing activities that only your travel buddy enjoys.

Of course, traveling alone can be scary, especially if you do not know what to expect. Here are some tips to help you thrive on your next solo adventure.

1. Take Lots of Pictures

Luxurious cruises from Florida and trips to scenic Europe are ripe for photo opportunities. You can take pictures with your phone or tablet and then share them on social media. This way, you can feel as if your loved ones are right there with you. The pictures will also remind you of your exciting journey.

2. Pick the Right Lodging

A shady hotel can be dangerous for a solo traveler. Do your research ahead of time and choose a hotel or Airbnb with positive ratings online. If you want to meet other tourists or locals during your trip, you can also opt for a hostel or rent a room in a nearby apartment.

Wi-Fi should also be a must. You likely will not want to tour a cruise ship or city at night by yourself. If you stay someplace with a good internet connection, you watch movies or surf the web while you are alone in your room.

3. Take Precautions  

When you are traveling by yourself, your safety should be your top priority. Spend most of your time in public and open places where you feel comfortable. Wherever you go, you should try to appear as confident as possible. Bad actors often look to take advantage of those who appear lost and confused. If are not sure where you are, walk into a local establishment to ask for directions. Tell people in the restaurant or shop that you are meeting a friend so they do not know you are in the country alone.

Looking like a tourist can also bring you unwanted attention. Avoid wearing clothes from the gift shop or walking around with your head buried in a guide book.

Be sure to also carry a purse or bag that is theft resistant. Use it to carry identification and your spending money. Important documents, such as your passport, should be kept in a safe place.  Your expensive clothes and jewelry should remain at home.

If you are a female and traveling alone, you should take even more precautions.  Ask for a hotel room near an elevator so you will not have to walk long corridors at night. You should also dress modestly so you do not stand out in a crowd.

4. Prepare for the Worst

While you hope nothing goes wrong on your trip, you have to prepare for the possibility of an emergency. Make sure your friends and family have your itinerary so they know exactly where you are going each day. Include any hotel reservation and flight times, as well. If you are traveling internationally, you may also want to register your trip with the State Department. This way, the local consulate or embassy will know how to contact you.

Be sure to additionally carry a readily accessible emergency contact list. It should include various important phone numbers, including the digits for your credit card company. You may need this number if your card gets stolen during your trip.

5. Meet New People

Just because you are traveling alone does not mean you have to spend your entire trip by yourself. Walk up to a chatty group at a local bar or use social media to connect with friendly locals.

Of course, you should still be cautious when hanging out with your newfound friends. Do not let them hold your money or credit card.

While traveling alone can seem scary, it can also be an exhilarating and liberating experience. The above suggestions should help you stay safe and have an unforgettable vacation.

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