Tuesday Tips: Why I Love Traveling Alone

For my high school graduation present, my mother used her savings and put me on a plane to London to stay with an uncle I’d never met before. At first, I was scared to death of the prospect of traveling alone. I’d never traveled anywhere by myself and I felt that London was a giant first leap. But I followed through with it and now, here I am, writing to you about the benefits of traveling on your own.

1. You learn independence and self-sufficiency. 
As an eighteen-year-old who’d never lived away from home, learning to get around in an unknown city was definitely a challenging task. However, I learned how to navigate the Tube in London and the streets of Mambajao, Camiguin without any help. I learned how to budget my money and how to be vigilant about pickpockets. Ultimately, I learned where my limits were, how much I could trust others, and how to fend for myself in a foreign country.

2. You can do whatever you want.
By traveling alone, you’re not tied down to anyone or anything. You can make your own agenda, plan your own itinerary, and take your own detours. As a lone traveler, you make your own rules and break them too. This makes exploration so much more fun!

3. You’re less distracted.
When you’re not surrounded by people, it’s easier to really take in what’s going on around you. It’s so easy to miss out on something because you were busy chatting with your friend or texting someone you know. But when you travel alone, you really get the eye-opening effects of a new place.

4. You’re required to interact more with your surroundings.
It’s easy to get lost in your friend world or in a group, but when you’re traveling alone, you don’t have this option. If you’re lost, you have to find a way to ask for directions. This could require learning some of the language or approaching a local inhabitant. Traveling alone forces you to interact with the locals and your environment in order to find your way around and stay safe.

5. You realize you’re never really alone.
In each of my trips in the past two years, I have met people. Especially my solo trips. When you’re alone, you’re much more approachable to other solo travelers who are in the same boat as you. Be alert, but also don’t be afraid to strike up a conversation with the people around you. Chances are, while traveling solo, you’ll meet a lot of really cool people along the way.

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30 comments

  1. This makes me so very excited for my journeys to commence!!!

  2. Thank you for this post! I’m thinking of traveling to Cambodia alone this Christmas, feeling a little apprehensive, but this post just made me a little braver!

  3. Can’t wait to backpack by myself!

  4. Truth
    Spoken :D

  5. I felt the same way as you. I did my first two large scale backpacking trips solo and now that I have a girlfriend as passionate about travel as I am, I’m excited to see where things go travelling as couple; however, I’ll always relish my experiences going solo as I learned so much about the world and myself.

    1. Samuel,

      That’s great! I definitely agree that traveling alone gives you experiences you may not have had if you’d traveled with someone. Good luck to you and your girlfriend with your travels as a couple, that should certainly be an adventure!

      ~Kay

  6. great argument in favor of solo travel :)
    I have ended up traveling alone several times. Not always out of choice. My 3 weeks to North East India were solo because no one I knew wanted to risk their lives traveling in a disturbed area :) Once I reached there I realized how over stated the situation really was. What I found was peace and a whole lot of fun people.
    Sometimes I like to backpack just so I can get away and read one of my favorite books on the road.

    1. Thank you :) Originally, I didn’t intend to travel alone either, but now that I have, it was definitely worth it!

      ~Kay

  7. This is great! I’ve always been too scared to travel solo…but this may have changed my view a bit! Thanks :)

    1. Glad to help! If you need any more advice feel free to ask, I love talking to people about travel :)

  8. Also when I travel alone I find it that I am more open to meeting new people and I can really get to know them without anyone pulling me away from them, competing with them and commenting on them.
    Traveling with someone equally open minded and self sufficient however has its perks too :) When you both want to go separate ways, you both go separate ways but when you start missing each other you are never too far to meet and travel together part of the way.

  9. I will be doing a lot of traveling alone this year and I’m really looking forward to it! :)

    1. Good luck! I love traveling alone and I’d do it any day!

      ~Kay

  10. Soo true! Especially about the being less distracted thing. I noticed that when I’m home I’m always texting/e-mailing/worried about having to get something done…not the case when I’m abroad. It’s soo relaxing to drop off the grid for a bit.

    1. I agree! Traveling definitely gets my mind off of technology and helps me realize there’s more out in the world!

      ~Kay

  11. Love this explanation, and couldn’t agree more(especially #5)! Having traveled many places, and many of the excursions by myself, I’ve come to learn you discover so much more about the actual people around you and in return about yourself when flying solo. Congrats on the constant journeying, and always find a way to search and explore freely.

    1. Thank you so much for swinging by my blog! :) I’ve learned that I enjoy traveling alone the most because learning is just inevitable! I love it! Happy travels :)

      ~Kay

  12. It’s always good to find other travelers who think going solo is pretty damn awesome! :) People can’t seem to understand why and how I travel solo at times. Man if they only knew….

    1. I agree, many people don’t understand the allure of traveling alone, but for me, I think it’s the BEST way to travel!

      ~Kay

  13. Traveling alone pushes you to your own limits and see how far you can go. It’s a bit challenging though, but it also builds your confidence in dealing with people and their culture as well! It’s crazy but it’s a lot of FUN!

    1. I agree! Traveling is definitely challenging but it’s taught me wonderful life lessons and enabled me to meet many amazing people. Thanks for stopping by my blog :)

      ~Kay

      1. ricomaacmolato · ·

        I also thank u for swinging by in my blog too!

  14. I love travelling alone too! what worries me is that I won’t ever be able to learn how to enjoy travelling with others from now on! hhahhha Thanks for reading my guest post on the Isle of Wight. Stop by any time :-)….. a fellow world hopper!

    1. Tracey,

      I definitely will stop by more often! I definitely agree — I think that it’s definitely an adjustment when I have to travel with others. Thanks for your email earlier (I’m about to reply!) and I’m definitely glad to meet a fellow world hopper :)

      ~Kay

  15. I also love traveling alone. It gives you a chance to get to know yourself and there is no greater conversation than the one with the voice inside your head. It never shuts up!

    1. I definitely agree! Thanks for stopping by my blog!

      ~Kay

  16. Hi Kay! Hope you don’t mind me rummaging through your blog hehe :)

    I haven’t tried going solo (I have around Manila and on foot, but never out of town), although I want to. It’s always been something of a dream since listening to a friend recall her solo travels, and upon learning that, yes, people do survive solo trips. I’ll try somewhere closer first, like Batangas, Laguna or anywhere a provincial bus from EDSA will take me. There’s always that fear of getting lost or not realizing expectations that’s keeping me from planning one, but I’m trying to get over it. Thanks for the words of advice :)

    1. Yes, definitely try it sometime! The Philippines is a great place to start, too, because in general everyone knows at least a little bit of English. Follow your instinct and please let me know if you need tips or advice — always love to help travelers get their feet off the ground! Thanks so much for stopping by and for your comments and likes :)

      ~Kay

  17. This is awesome. Although travelling alone can be frowned upon (especially for us ladies), I think its an amazing experience, unlike traveling with others. The smaller the group the better, in my opinion. Traveling alone really does give you a lot more time and the patience to reflect on your surroundings and ideas. Just as long as you feel comfortable with yourself and the area you are in, solo traveling is excellent.

    1. Nathalie,

      I agree! Many of my friends think I’m crazy when I tell them I love traveling alone, but I think it’s one of those things you can’t really understand until you try it. Great points you make here. Thanks so much for stopping by my blog :)

      ~Kay

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