Although it’s great to spend vacations seeing the world with your family, friends, or a lover, traveling alone can also be completely incredible. It doesn’t matter if its a trip to a nearby city or travelling across a country for a month. I have to admit, it be quite daunting but think of it this way: you have a limited amount of time and money to spend on travel, so why not customize it to your individual preferences so that you can maximize your satisfaction? If that’s not enough to convince you, here are 10 reasons why you should consider solo travel.
1. You become more open-minded.
If you live your life being closed off to new ideas you will stagnate in society. Open-mindedness help people grow because it opens you up to new possibilities, people, and outcomes. It will allow you to grow your own beliefs, emotions, and interactions in a positive way. You become more inclined to take part in things that you might not have before. You become more adventurous.
2. It’s easier to make it happen and actually get moving.
There’s nothing more disheartening than plans that don’t push through. Sometimes this happens when we plan trips with other people. Something just come up last minute and you’re left with no choice but to reschedule or had a change in plans.
3. You become more independent.
When you are in a new place you are forced to make decisions for yourself. From decisions as small as where to have breakfast to figuring out if you want to go scuba diving. You are also forced to figure out how to get to your destination safely. You are your own responsibility.
4. You are the master of your itinerary
Being with other people may result to having so many options and whole lot of confusion. Everyone has their own opinions, tastes and preferences. You might want to go hiking up a mountain, others in a group might not. Traveling solo you can do whatever you want whenever you want no permission or compromise needed. You do you. Whatever you plan to do will definitely happen. Also, when you travel solo, you have the freedom to investigate your intrigue. You get to travel at your own pace.
5. You develop better communication skills
Even if you’re the most extroverted person in the world, at some point you will feel anxious when approaching people that you do not know. You’ll want to talk to that stanger on the bus or that surfer who caught that awesome wave. Besides, it’s the locals in a destination who know the best places to eat or the best spot to catch a sunset.
6. You meet really awesome people
Traveling on your own can be scary. Will you be lonely and miserable the whole time? Only if you want to be. Interacting with strangers wherever you go means you’ll hear a lot of fascinating stories that you wouldn’t have heard if you took company with you because tendency is you’ll stick with them most of the time.
7. You will be able to pick up basics of language easily as you travel
For someone who loves learning new languages or dialects, this is my favorite part of traveling. Being able to read a sign or ask someone directions can turn a near-disaster into a fun travel experience. You become more culturally aware of the world around you. And for me, communicating in someone’s own language opens the door to a genuine interaction, and ideally, a genuine connection.
8. Finding comfort in being uncomfortable
Whether you’re aware of it or not, you live in an invisible box. It’s also known as your comfort zone and your life is limited by it. Staying inside your comfort zone sounds like a logical thing to do. That’s why we don’t even question it. We create the zone and do our best to stay in it. Your opinions don’t get challenged, you’re not exposed to new things but you’ll be surprised that what you’ll find outside of your comfort zone often tends to be what you’re currently missing in your life.
9. You learn to live with less.
I am talking about what you bring on your trips and your budget. Once you opt to pack light your life on the road becomes easier. It lets you move freely at airports, on public transport, in crowds and on rough and hilly terrain. Don’t be tempted to get a case that’s slightly too big because you will fill that space with unnecessary items – it’s why I always travel with my backback. It will force you to narrow your items down to the essentials. You’ll be a happier traveler than those who saddle themselves with their entire wardrobe.
You’ve worked hard, saved every cent you could and now you’re all set to explore the world. The “anything goes” spirit that is so intoxicating during a trip can turn a little… toxic afterwards (when you see your credit card bills) this is why you need to set a budget. Carry a notepad or install an app that will help you track of your expences. It will be almost impossible to stick with your budget when you don’t write it down. When going to your destination, why not try to catch the public transportation? Not only are they really cheap compared to taxis or tourist buses, but they can be very entertaining. And for the food? Skip the touristy restaurants and follow the locals to places where you can find authentic local cuisine at a great value. It’s fun to try new things and you’ll have a good travel story to share when you get home.
10. Your experience will be more meaningful.
These experiences conquer you and shape up your personality. Instead of just taking a look, I enjoy and meet locals and experience a place through them instead of just hitting up tourist sites. Travelling always opens up a different world to you. You learn about various cuisines, cultures, habits and meet different people. It adds to your self-development and you get to learn way more than any class will ever teach you. Among all these you discover a new you too. Some hidden talents and habits that you never knew may emerge and make you wonder if you really had it till now.