It can be intimidating holidaying alone, especially when you’ve never done it before.
But despite the initial uncertainty (and the dreaded single supplement), solo travel can be one of the most rewarding ways to see the world. You’ll have the opportunity to discover new places at your own pace, step outside your comfort zone and meet like-minded travellers.
For some, travelling alone is a rite of passage, for others it comes down to circumstance, but whatever the case solo travel is on the rise, with more and more people opting to go it alone than ever before.
So if you’ve been harbouring a notion about heading off somewhere exotic on your own, here are five big benefits of holidaying alone:
One benefit of solo travel is that you can be completely selfish. When you’re travelling with other people you often have to compromise on a lot of your choices. But when you travel alone you can change plans easily, set your own pace and do whatever brings you joy.
We recently asked the Travel at 60 community why they think solo travel is great.
“I love travelling alone because I can do things at my own pace, see anything that interests me without having to ask anyone else their thoughts, and can dine in or out to suit my needs,” Jennifer Lockhart said.
Meanwhile, Lee Jeffery added: “I enjoy travelling alone because I get to be selfish (something that’s hard at home when you have to balance needs across the family). I can talk with people if I feel like it – or put on my sunglasses and remain incognito. My time – my choice – my way.”
One thing is for sure, holidaying solo is one of the best ways to learn about yourself. Travelling alone gives you the opportunity to find out who you are, what you care about and what you want to do with your time. You can also learn a lot from the way you present yourself to new people and experiences.
The friends you can make on a solo trip will amaze you. If you’re travelling solo as part of an organised tour you’ll have instant travel buddies, but if you’re truly on your own, don’t be afraid to strike up a conversation with a stranger — the results might surprise you.
“I’m a passionate solo traveller, have been to Europe several times, all trips organised by myself…. I’m an outgoing person, love to mingle and meet new people, but like to do my own things,” Travel at 60 reader Maria Libor said.
Holidaying solo is one of the best ways to boost your confidence. When you travel solo, you won’t be able to rely on anyone else. But, not having anyone to rely on can also be a good thing — you’ll learn to put yourself out there and deal with things on your own. You’ll return feeling pretty capable and confident!
You will have the chance to explore or develop talents that you know you have — or suspect are lurking within! From cooking classes and painting courses to hiking trips and learning-to-sail odysseys, your passion can be a fantastic inspiration for booking a trip.