Solo travel isn’t as hard as it seems. I am by no means an expert. But after travelling to Europe for the first time and then spending a week alone in London and hiking in Switzerland, I would love to make the case for travelling solo.
There’s such a stigma against solo travel. When I told people about my trip reactions ranged from, “why would you do something so stupid?” to “Umm, I’d be terrified if I were you!”. My family was surprisingly fine with it. A few close friends were very supportive. But the rest were simply wondering why I wasn’t bringing someone along.
I read How to Travel the World on $50 a Day and Matt Kepnes is so inspirational I simply had to try his advice! So what if there wasn’t anyone able to travel with me? The fact that I’m a short young woman should not be a barrier to my desire to see the world. So I researched my tickets, did some really bad math and managed to score cheap tickets to London and from Geneva. I read a bunch of travel books in the months leading up to the trip and I wrote down must-see destinations.
Weirdly I simply wasn’t scared of travelling alone. This was probably because the trip didn’t feel real until the week I had to leave. Even though I researched so much, I wasn’t really prepared. My biggest advice would be to buy packing cubes and a selfie stick while keeping your luggage to a minimum. You want to be able to bring back souvenirs and also be able to lug it up a cobble stone hill to a castle you didn’t realise you were staying at (fact: this actually happened to me).
Google Maps is a godsend. It was the only reason I managed to go anywhere during my trip. You can now save offline maps and then place stars on your destinations so that you can point your phone at the star and follow the blue dot to your destination. So I saved offline maps of each city I wanted to visit and put stars on each spot I needed to see and off I went!
If you want to see a country or state or province no matter how far or close, just do it! Seriously! Nothing is holding you back except your fears. You don’t have to do a month long trip or a year long one. I did a two week one and I saw each city I visited in depth. Since I’m still on my vacation high, I’ll be sharing my tips on getting around and seeing as much as possible in London and Switzerland in three separate posts. So stay tuned for some major travel posts coming your way!
Until next time,