Already planning your holiday for this year? Want to spend some relaxing time at the beach, but feel like no matter where you look, traveling alone always seems so much more expensive? You’re right, and the reason is pretty simple: Most hotels charge additional fees and supplements if you’re spending your holiday in a single room. So, a holiday by yourself can be an expensive journey costing double the price you’d normally pay when travelling in a group.
But don’t give up! There are many other options for you if you are interested in traveling alone. And I know single holidays aren’t necessarily about getting to know other people – or even meeting the man/woman of your dreams. But still, a holiday on your own will do you good. It’s still the perfect way to forget all about the stress and worries you might have at home. And, as cliché as it does sound, you end up learning so much about yourself that you won’t discover from a holiday with a friend or your mates. If you’re worrying about how to travel alone and stay safe, fret not. Today I want to share some useful tips and tricks with you about how to enjoy a relaxing and cheap solo holiday, so you can travel alone and love it!
So, time to give you some solo travel ideas! Not surprisingly, the big cities of the world are the best place to travel solo. Amsterdam in the Netherlands is well known for being particularly safe for solo traveler holidays. Melbourne in Australia is also a very popular destination for lone traveler holidays, and Bali in Indonesia is pretty much filled with solo travelers, so there’s lots of opportunity to make new mates from across the globe. There are so many ideal places for you to try out.
General tips on solo holidays – what you need to know
There are more options to travel alone than some might think. In order to choose the perfect trip that meets all your standards, you first need to think about what kind of vacation you want to have. I assume you’re not exactly looking for Mr./Mrs. Right and the perfect relationship on your holidays. You are probably just looking for some time off and want to spend the days relaxing and having fun.
There are many tour operators that have already focused on the special needs of single travelers. However, their trips often have higher prices than the normal costs for traveling as a couple.
Keeping an eye open for travel bargains is always worth the (little) effort, especially for singles. You should avoid traveling when it’s school holidays and stick to the off-season instead – that’s one way to save money. If you are not particularly interested in partying and flirting all the time, you can join a cultural trip to meet like-minded people.
Find the best time to travel
It is definitely smart to check the travel period for your single trip before you start booking. Make it your advantage that you don’t have to agree with anyone else on a date. If you want to leave during the summer holidays, for example, you probably end up on a beach with a lot of families all around you. So if you are not into crowds and super packed beaches, you might want to avoid the summer holidays. Also, it is also harder to connect with people when there are only families around. And if you dread the additional fees you have to pay for the single rooms, you should consider travelling to popular destinations such as Spain, Greece or Turkey off-season. Very often no additional fees are charged during this period of time. Pick early Autumn or late Spring, then you still have great weather in these destinations and chances are high that you meet like-minded people, or even other singles.
Join a group and enjoy your trip together
Before choosing a destination, you should think about what kind of vacation you want to have. Do you want to party much and have lots of fun? Then you should check out some special online platforms for singles’ holidays. Here you can find other people who don’t want to travel all alone and are looking for a group to go on a trip with. Wouldn’t it be nice to enjoy the sun and later hit the bars and clubs together?! You can get to know each other in a relaxing environment and go on trips together. Whether you are looking for some personal contact or want to spend some time alone – here you can have the best of both!
Studying meets culture trip
Sometimes it is not necessary to look for a single trip. If you would like to discover something new and you are interested in culture, you can join a study trip or a cultural tour. That way you don’t have to travel the world on your own and can also benefit from the knowledge of your professional guides. They can show you the great historical sites and cultural highlights worth visiting. Of course you will not only find singles here, but you will definitely have the opportunity to get to know new interesting people!
Club holidays – a popular choice!
If you are interested in a fun vacation with lots of opportunities for getting active, you should definitely take a look at holiday clubs, maybe at Robinson. Some of these clubs have great specials for families and others are perfect for people who travel alone, even if you have a child (many Robinson Clubs, for example, offer special “single with child”-rooms). All-Inclusive services are very common for club holidays and you can choose between various activities for your entertainment and your fitness. There’s enough to do for a whole day outside and at night you go to bed completely satisfied from all the activities and the good food!
Booking a cruise
If you are rather an adventurous type of person but don’t want to miss a certain degree of comfort, a cruise liner might be the perfect way to spend your solo holiday! Those trips offer heaps of cool deals for single travelers. AIDA, for example, organizes interesting meetings and dance lessons on their cruises so people can get to know each other more easily. If you travel with TUI Cruises, you can sit down at special tables where you can meet other singles and enjoy your meals together.
Helpful Ideas for Solo Travel
There are some little things you can do to make solo travel just that little bit easier. The first and most important is to make sure you are safe. Be contactable by everyone back home at all times. It’s good for your family’s peace of mind, as it’s just natural they will get worried while you’re far from home. Give a copy of your itinerary, or a rough outline of what you’re planning to do, so everyone at home has an idea of how to find you in the emergency case that you can’t be contacted. Try not to show off too much, and be mindful of your belongings. Don’t take too much cash out with you, always have some stored away safely as a back up that you can easily access. Be extra careful with your phone.
It pays to know a bit about your new surroundings. If possible, learn the basics of the language. This will make things a lot easier, from getting around to ordering a drink in the bar. Bring some maps with you in case your phone data runs out or you can’t find WiFi so that you can get your bearings easily. Why not chat to the locals a little too, try and see if they have any suggestions on places that you can visit?
Of course, as I’ve said, traveling by yourself can get a little boring, so be sure that you bring along enough to keep you entertained throughout your trip. Bring as many books as you can carry – or bring a Kindle to make carrying them a little easier on your back. You’ll thank me for this tip when your backpack starts getting heavier by the minute! Download some movies to your tablet – Netflix gives you the option to do this now, so make the most of any free WiFi available and load up on some movies or series. This could be the time you finally watch that show everyone is talking about.
So what can you do to avoid paying more? Of course you can join all of those dating platforms and try to find someone you can spend the holidays with. But in the end you would have to share the room with someone you barely know, just to save some money. Doesn’t sound like the perfect holiday, don’t you think?
More often than not, cruise liners, hotels and tour operators will base their rates on double occupancy. So, for solo vacations you would often need to pay what’s known as a “single supplement”. You would often need to pay the price of the full room or tour just for yourself, thereby, making it much more expensive than traveling in a group. Not only do you need to pay extra for your room, but the cost of taxis, travel tickets or car rental can add up to become too expensive for single travelers. Luckily, there are lots of ways to make traveling alone a little more affordable.
Benefits to traveling alone
There’s simply no denying that solo travel has lots of benefits. Sometimes the best thing about a trip is heading off, on your own, with not a thing to worry about. Perhaps the best thing about traveling on your own is that it pushes you out of your comfort zone immensely, as cliché as it sounds. As you’re on your own, you get talking to people you never thought you would talk to. You could surely meet your new best friend while you’re on your travels – or perhaps meet the love of your life! ;)
Another upside to traveling by yourself is that you can be just a little bit selfish. You can live by your own schedule, whether that means sleeping in late or rolling into bed as the sun comes up. You can see as much or as little of the local sights as you want, and you can go out to eat or go for a drink as much or as little as takes your fancy. You don’t need to worry about dragging someone along who isn’t going to be as interested in art museums as you are, and conversely you don’t have to go and see anything you wouldn’t have had at the top of your own list.
A surprising positive to traveling alone is how fantastic it will look on your CV. Traveling solo massively improves your communication skills, as you often need to learn the basics of the local language to get by. It does wonders for your budgeting and money management skills. And, it shows that you are able to adapt and make crucial decisions independently. What more could a manager look for!
Downsides to traveling alone
As with everything, solo travel does have its negative parts, too. The biggest downside, apart from the cost as I’ve already mentioned, is definitely the loneliness. No matter how much you might sometimes joke that you hate people, we humans are naturally social animals. If you’re heading off on a six-month trek around the world, you might find it very difficult to last without talking to someone. Mix homesickness in on top and traveling can get lonely quite quickly. Just the smallest thing can sometimes remind you that you’re in a foreign country on your own.
Another downside is that it can be quite unsafe to travel around on your own. You really do need to be careful with your personal belongings, as living with no access to your cash is difficult. It can also be a bit of a nightmare to replace your passport from abroad. You may also need to be wary of the people you meet – just remember you don’t really know much about them.
Of course, boredom is inevitable. You might be standing in the most beautiful place in the world, but there are only so many waterfalls you can see, new foods you can try, and books you can read to pass the time. It can a little underwhelming when there’s no one there to enjoy the experience with you because you’re traveling on your own.
So there you have it, some of the top ideas for solo travel across the world. If this sounds like just the thing for you then why not take a look at some of the wonderful solo travel deals I’ve found, or build your own solo travel itinerary?
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