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Life Hacks for Solo Travel

by travelmynation
Hacks for Solo Travel

People who travel solo for the first time either describe it as a ‘religious’ experience or a scary one! Traveling alone can be very intimidating for someone who isn’t used to it. Single travel does have its issues – safety, boredom, loneliness etc. However, it can also be a great opportunity for self-indulgence. You can do what you want to do, be flexible about timings and trip plans. Most importantly your failures are your own and your accomplishments feel even better. We have done quite a few solo trips between us – from my scary experience to Kolli Hills, to Archana’s hitchhiking trip to the North East.

So from our experience, we would like to share a few tips about solo travel.
Optimized-chain-door-lock-164425.jpgSAFETY

The biggest concern during solo travel, especially for women in India is safety and emergency situations. So here are a few tips for stay safe and be prepared for anything.1. Keep your family informed of your travel plans. Your location, mode of transport, dates and contact numbers of hotels should be shared with them

2. Review hotels/homestays thoroughly before you book them. Stay in properties that are well-connected to the roads and have mobile connectivity. Use a mobile operator that has a good network. We travel to remote places and have found BSNL to have the best connectivity

3. Learn a little about the culture, language, and people of the place you are visiting. Some common words wouldn’t be that difficult to learn and could help you out a lot!

4. Do not travel alone at night or in deserted places

5. Try and avoid flashy clothes/jewelry/electronics. Don’t flaunt your belongings and be alert while using your wallet. Better to leave jewelry at home

6. Always be aware of your surroundings. Being alert helps in most times and is a habit that needs to be inculcated over time

7. Carry pepper spray or a pocket knife if you can

8. Don’ get into tussles with the locals. Respect their space and privacy and you should do fine most of the time.

9. We also have the habit of sharing our location on WhatsApp with our family, whenever we can

10. Ensure location services are enabled on your phone with 3G/4G data turned on always, in the absence of wi-fi

11. Know your limits with alcohol. While traveling alone, you need to be in control of yourself at ALL times

Hacks for Solo Travel

BOREDOM

When we initially traveled solo, we sometimes felt bored due to the lack of company. Over time we realized that solo traveling gives us an excellent opportunity to connect with ourselves and the locals. Some tips to stay engaged (without TV or internet).

1. Talk to locals whenever you can. You will find that you will learn so much more about the place and the culture than the internet has to offer. Sometimes you will come across amazing people with fascinating stories to share. Most of us have reservations about talking to strangers and this is an excellent opportunity to step outside your comfort zone. You will find this helpful in connecting with people in your professional and personal life

2. Make a list of places/activities you’d want to cover. That way you don’t waste time at the location and make full use of your time

3. Take a book or some videos with you just in case. I was once caught in a storm in a jungle without power and internet and the videos I had on my phone helped me pass the scary night! Read about that experience here 
Hacks for Solo TravelESSENTIALS

1. Power banks, even if you have access to plug points. Also, carry a spare phone if you have access to one

2. Torch – although most mobiles have one built-in, they are nothing compared to an actual torch. Must have for people who travel to remote places and wildlife destinations. We spotted a leopard once by accidentally shining the torch lights on trees opposite our room! Having a torch also helps you save precious battery life on your phone

3. Spare specks/contacts, if you wear any

4. Medicines – we generally carry stuff for cold, headaches, fever and loose motions

5. Spare keys for your car/bike

6. Car/bike spares. We own a KTM and don’t have access to spares everywhere we travel

7. Hardcopy of important phone numbers. Yes! I don’t think a lot of us remember our family or friends phone numbers so do carry a printout of a few numbers

8. Packaged water, if you’re susceptible to upsetting your stomach with anything else

9. Spare cash/ID that’s not in your wallet

10. A Matchbox and a candle. You never know when you would need to light a fire either to protect you against cold or at times even darkness
Hacks for Solo TravelAdvantages of Solo Travel

1. You’ll become a problem solver – when faced with difficult situations you will automatically use your creativity and experience to get out of them

2. It will give you great professional skill sets like heightened confidence, ability to connect with people, dealing with ambiguity, adaptability, and the experience of doing something yourself

3. Improved attitude – since we started traveling solo, we realized we have become more open to changes, friendlier, calmer at the face of adversity and learned how to bring out the creative side inside of us. We have become more accommodating, understanding and have learned to let go of our egos

4. Decision-making skills do improve more as you do solo travels. You are in charge of your own travel and every decision you make impacts the success of your trip

5. You become a story-teller. You will have so many experiences and fond memories that you will tend to share them with others. It happens a lot with us when we engage others in stories /pictures of all our travel destinations

6. You will become brave – with no backup around you, you will learn to take care of yourself and be comfortable making your own decisions

We hope this helps make up your mind about solo travel or prepare you better for it. We’ll keep adding to this list as and when we go on more solo travels or collect info from others. Solo travel is highly underrated and needs to be experienced once at least. The experience is highly liberating, empowering and will leave you with increased confidence in yourself.

Suggested Read - Tips for solo women travelers

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17 comments

Suparna Bora October 6, 2017 - 11:51 PM

Good read. I am looking forward to my solo trip and your tips should indeed be helpful.

Reply
travelmynation October 7, 2017 - 12:57 PM

Thanks for reading!! Happy journeys

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delhifundos2014 September 2, 2020 - 3:20 PM

Oh this are some really good tips! Thanks for sharing, anyone looking for some tips for solo travel will really love this article. Pinning!

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mahekg September 3, 2020 - 1:15 AM

I have travelled solo just once and this was just by chance. It felt like a breeze of freedom. Your tips come from experience and are very helpful.

Reply
pamela September 3, 2020 - 1:54 AM

Being a solo traveler i relate each and every point here . It’s very important to take safety precautions, read about the place and hotels and also be prompt at any conditions. Very nice article

Reply
Sandy N Vyjay September 3, 2020 - 4:26 PM

Though solo travel can be really satisfying, it too has a flipside to it like everything else in life. As you have mentioned safety is of course something that is a very integral part of traveling solo. Being aware of your surrounding at all times and being careful without being paranoid is of the essence.

Reply
Shivani Singh September 3, 2020 - 10:39 PM

I am an avid traveler but I have never travelled solo. I always wanted to try it once but never did because of all the reasons that u mentioned like safety, boredom etc. After reading this article I think I should at least experience it once. Thanks for all the tips n tricks.

Reply
Arnav Mathur September 3, 2020 - 11:23 PM

This post literally nails it. Solo Travel is indeed enriching and something that every traveller should undertake at one point or the other. Yes at times it gets lonely specially on longer travels, but I found catching up on movies or serials to be a good pasttime in situations like these.

Reply
shagufta121 September 4, 2020 - 6:04 AM

Such a good easy read that was. Never travelled solo but if or whenever I do. . I now know how to play it good. Thanks🙌

Reply
Nidhi Gupta September 4, 2020 - 7:12 AM

Hardcopy of phone numbers is a good tip. And the advantages of solotravel are so well summed up.

Reply
PRIYANKA SENGAR September 4, 2020 - 12:26 PM

Such a detailed but very apt read it is. Every point you mentioned here is full of sense and be easily relatable with the experiences and the incidences a Traveller can relate.

Reply
DiaryOfAnInsaneWriter September 4, 2020 - 12:27 PM

Loved your post! Have been planning a solo trip for a while now. Your post will help me to plan better. Thank you so much for writing this one. Amazing tips!

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