Chit-chats Travel Tuesday

Solo Travel: Why You Absolutely Should

Budapest cityscape
Words: @oliverinstead • Photo: Myself • Location: The city of Pest, from Buda

One of the most asked questions when I told people that I was going on a trip by myself / have gone on a trip by myself was : “Can you not find someone to go with you?” And my internal response was “Um, must I have a companion to travel?”

So in this week’s #TravelTuesday, I just want to talk about five reasons why I sometimes choose to travel by myself, and why you should do the same at some point (in fact, various points) in your lifetime.

 

one You’ll go wherever you want to go

…or do whatever you want to do. If you want to go to the same cafe everyday that you’re in the city, you can, because you want to. Equally, no one can stop you from trying out a new dining spot every evening. Travelling solo means you don’t have to please anyone, or feel guilty for not doing certain things.

 

two You’ll have your own experience

This is especially true when you’re visiting somewhere new. Travelling with someone who’s been to that city / country before poses the risk of said person imposing their opinion of the destination on you… and that’s the last thing you want.

You should aim to make up your own mind about everything and ridding all those noises will make it that much easier to form your own opinion.

 

three You’ll be able to truly soak it all in

Not having a travel buddy who you’re constantly having to negotiate with re: what to see next or where to eat tomorrow night means that you’re free from distractions and that you can take as many moments as you wish to stop and smell the roses.

 

four You’ll supercharge your confidence

Navigating your way through a foreign city where half the population doesn’t share your lingua franca is no mean feat. If sense of direction isn’t your strong suit (trust me, you’ll still survive regardless) then you’ll have the perfect opportunity to overcome your weakness, and you’ll become more confident in your ability than you ever were for it.

 

five You’ll learn to appreciate your own company

True, I was ‘alone’ throughout the entire trip but I did not feel ‘lonely’ for a sec… for two reasons : first I simply didn’t have time to feel lonely because I was constantly on the move. second I learned to enjoy my own company.

I asked myself questions; what are my interests? How do I want to spend the little time I have in this city? Where do I really want to go during my brief visit here? And I planned my days accordingly.

 

Notes : I’m by no means shading those who crave companionship but the truth is everyone should be their own person : and there’s no better way to realise that than spending some time away from everyone and everything you know.

 

Having said all that, this weekend I’ll be travelling with someone to Malta – somewhere new that we can both tick off our bucket list. To keep up with my travels, be sure to follow me on Instagram – where I’ll be sharing a tonne of Stories as they unfold.

What about you? When was the last time you packed up, waved goodbye to everything, and just took off by yourself? Let me know in the comments below!

 

Oliver 

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14 Comments

  • Reply
    Elsa Lee
    October 3, 2017 at 8:02 am

    I live by myself so perhaps I have more desire to travel with someone. My usual travel buddy is my sister and we have remarkably similar tastes in both what we want to get out of our travels and food! I don’t think I’d mind a day trip by myself, but for anything longer I think I’d definitely want my sister around for.

    • Reply
      Oliver
      October 3, 2017 at 8:42 am

      That makes sense! And I think it’s so sweet that you’re so close to your sister ?

      Oliver x

  • Reply
    Bill
    October 3, 2017 at 10:37 am

    I live alone so I am quite happy to travel on my own. However it is nice to travel with a friend sometimes, or to meet up with friends when I am overseas.

    I totally agree with you about gaining in confidence from travelling alone in a country where you don’t speak the language. I was quite nervous about visiting Germany for the first time but I managed ok. That led to me going further afield and I’ve never looked back. Solo travel is fun!

    • Reply
      Oliver
      October 3, 2017 at 11:08 am

      I love meeting up with friends when I’m away! Did that in Brunei where I was chauffeured around by my uni classmate… ?

      Oliver x

  • Reply
    Joycelyn Arthur
    October 3, 2017 at 11:27 am

    I travel on my own all the time and I love it and be to honest most times I travel,Am never alone, I always meet people who are travelling alone too and I make friends with them.
    Travelling alone has given me the confidence to speak and get to know people easily as well.
    Enjoy your holiday to Malta.

  • Reply
    Emma jones
    October 3, 2017 at 11:49 am

    As I get older this makes more sense to me. I think time on your own is very healthy and necessary for a healthy mind

  • Reply
    Kate
    October 3, 2017 at 12:05 pm

    I once went to Prague on my own. It was so liberating!

  • Reply
    Sarah Irving | The Urban Wanderer
    October 3, 2017 at 1:04 pm

    I love travelling along and with my other half. I think that both have their benefits and most of the time I get a few days by myself while he is at a conference so I still get the best of both even when we are together.

    • Reply
      Sarah Irving | The Urban Wanderer
      October 3, 2017 at 1:05 pm

      Or alone even LOL

    • Reply
      Oliver
      October 3, 2017 at 1:10 pm

      That sounds like a very reasonable arrangement, Sarah! I’m glad you and your partner have figured out a way to travel together but solo at the same time ☺️

      Oliver x

  • Reply
    Asma
    October 8, 2017 at 10:02 am

    Preach! love this, and I really believe it’s important to be comfortable with yourself in order to feel truly happy and appreciative at all times. x

  • Reply
    Dannii
    October 18, 2017 at 11:23 am

    I have been on a couple of solo backpacking trips and they are some of the best things I have ever done. You learn a lot about yourself, as much as a cliche that is.

  • Reply
    Alice
    October 18, 2017 at 5:01 pm

    Love this! I was so apprehensive about solo travel but I did it last year and it really is good for the soul. Everyone should try it once!

    • Reply
      Oliver
      October 18, 2017 at 5:11 pm

      Thanks Alice! Definitely… I’ve done it twice so far, so I can’t wait for the third, fourth, fifth solo trip…!

      Oliver x

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