Whether it’s a journey of self-discovery, necessary time alone or just don’t want the hassle of coordinating with others, solo travel is on the rise. Solo travelers account for 25 percent of all leisure travel, up from 13 percent two years prior, according to a recent study by Visa Global Travel Intentions.
Who is taking a trip alone? Results of a survey conducted by a website dedicated to solo traveling stated that over two thirds are women and more than half are over 55. Regardless of your reasons or life stage, we’ve listed some tips on how to plan and make the most of a wonderful solo getaway.
Write it Down
We live in a digital age. Because we can easily save our itineraries and check in on our mobile devices, our first inclination is to shun pen and paper. But what would you do if your phone is lost or damaged? Make a hard copy of all your travel arrangements. Write out your emergency contact info on a card and place it in your wallet. When you arrive at your hotel, grab a business card or brochure so you can flash it to your Uber driver in case you get lost.
When traveling alone, don’t count on anyone to carry your bags. If you can’t comfortably carry it yourself, then you packed too much. Pack as little as possible and then remove three items. Bring neutral colors so it’s easy to mix and match. Besides, no one will care if you wear the same outfit twice anyway.
Tour the Town
Walking tours are now common in most vacation destinations and often cater to solo travelers. It’s also a great way to meet like-minded vacationers and even locals. Also, tour guides are a great source for delicious restaurants or sights off the beaten path.
Join a Crowd
You may have started the journey alone, but it doesn’t mean you have to spend your entire vacation by yourself. Keep an open mind, and you’ll find that meeting others in new locales is actually quite easy. You’ll often find that those new connections will become the most memorable parts of your trip. Go to festivals, take a tour like we mentioned above and be open to breaking bread with others.
Eat at the Bar or Counter
Mealtime can be the loneliest part of the trip. Sit at the bar or counter and make it a more social affair. It gives you the chance to converse with the bartender or server (who’s usually a great source of info) and meet other people sitting around you.
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