Solo travel can be a minefield of extra charges and uncertain journeys but it can also be extremely rewarding with you walking away from it with a ton of new friends you are tied to for life. It can be difficult to know the best way to go if you are just starting out so I’ve pulled together my quick top tips for travelling alone (without pulling on those purse strings).
1. Skyscanner That Baby Up
Do not, I repeat DO NOT book a tour operator package deal for wherever you are going. Single person supplements ARE a thing and they are mammoth. I learned this the hard way when booking my flights for my study abroad trip and got completely taken to the cleaners. That said, if you really do feel the need to book through an agency, try to book through a local company or specialists in that field and they will try harder to find you the right package.
2. Be Flexible
Can you hold on for one more extra day for a cheaper flight? Do you really need a hotel with all of those added extras you will probably never use? Many solo travellers make the mistake of safety-net travelling but put the different parts of your trip together yourself and you’ll enjoy it more for it.
3. Pack Light
You stand a way better chance of scoring a cheap last-minute flights if it is just you and your hand luggage to deal with (as well as emergency coach transfers). Connections are also SO MUCH easier if you don’t have to claim your case on your own, keeping an eye on the luggage carousel, an eye on the time and an eye on the flight display board is hectic.
4. Cling on to Those Connections
Have a family member living overseas? One of your old uni mates studying abroad? Know someone who lives near an airport who could loan an empty sofa for that early morning flight? Make the most of those connections, they save massively on your travel budget and offer a lifeline when you have a million questions about your destination (like ‘what plugs are used?’ or ‘what currency should I take’?)
5. And on That Note…
Make friends! Friends made whilst travelling are the best kind and bonding over a completely new and surreal experience is the perfect way to see somewhere new. Travellers come from all over the world and are a great source of local knowledge, offer them a place to crash back home and the world is your oyster, who is better to show you around a country than someone who lives and breathes it every day?
6. Be Confident
Card declined? Hotel double booked? Don’t stress it, you CAN do this. No matter where in the world you end up there will be some way to fix whatever problem comes along, be that missed flights or a lost suitcase. Do like the famous slogan tells you, keep calm and carry on. You’ll have the time of your life and have a ton of incredible stories to tell when you get home.
Have your own tips and tricks for travelling solo? Let me know in the comments section and be sure to check back here soon for more travel inspo.