Traveling alone or even just as a couple can be a great experience. You have to find your own fun, without relying on other people to keep you company. It can be pretty intimidating at first, especially if you’re an introvert or a little shy, or you just struggle to be on your own. However, if you make an effort to put yourself out there, you can turn your trip into whatever you want it to be. You might be on your own, but your travels definitely don’t have to be lonely. If you want to travel solo but avoid loneliness, here are some of the things you can do.
Join a Group Tour
The simplest way to travel alone or as a couple but still have plenty of people to spend time with is to join a group tour. It could be a full, multi-day tour where you all get to know each other during that period. Or you might just choose to go on a day tour for a few hours or a whole day, where you can spend time with others for just a short while. There are all sorts of things you can do and types of tours that you might like, from active tours involving hiking or cycling to food tours, sightseeing, and plenty of other options.
Stay in Touch By Phone and Online
You don’t necessarily have to meet new people on your travels to avoid being lonely. Staying in touch with people back home or socializing online can be a great way to prevent loneliness and communicate with people on your own terms. You could even use a phone chat line to talk to new people when you feel like it. Use social media to update everyone on your travels or call home now and then to give your family and friends news about what you’ve been doing.
Pick Social Accommodation
Your choice of accommodation can make a difference if you want to avoid loneliness when you’re traveling. Some types of accommodation are much more social than others. Staying in a hotel could give you opportunities to meet new people, but many people choose to keep to themselves. Choosing a hotel in a resort can often give you more chances to socialize with others. Hostels can be a lot more social, especially if you share a room with others. Camping sites are often very social too or you might choose a B&B with good common areas so you can meet people.
Choose the Right Mode of Transport
There are different ways you might choose to travel, and some types of transport can be great for talking to other people. For example, traveling by train will often make it easier to strike up a conversation with others. This is particularly true on trains with shared tables and longer journeys when you have time to talk and admire the scenery. You might find that other types of shared transport are good for socializing too, such as ferries and other boats and ships or even buses.
Strike Up Conversations with Strangers
Learning how to start conversations with strangers is one of the best things you can do if you want to avoid feeling lonely when you’re traveling. Even if you just have a five-minute conversation and then go on your way, it’s still valuable social time that can raise your spirits. It can be really tough to start talking to people you don’t know, especially if you’re shy or you find socializing requires a lot of effort. But it’s something that you can learn to do so that it comes more easily and you feel comfortable talking to just about anyone.
Learn Something New
Your travels are the perfect time to learn something new, and it’s also a good way to get to know new people. Attending a course to learn the local language or learn how to cook the local food is a fun way to immerse yourself in the culture. It’s also a way you can meet fellow travelers from all over. You already have a shared topic that you can talk about, and you can build new skills together too. It’s something that you could do for a day or you could find a longer course that lasts several days or longer.
Socialize When You Eat and Drink
Many people traveling solo for the first time worry about eating and drinking on their own. They feel awkward and like it’s perhaps a rather tragic thing to do. But it can actually be a fulfilling experience. You get to choose where to go and what you eat or drink without having to compromise. If you want to keep to yourself, you can read a book or something similar. But if you feel like socializing with others, consider choosing places to eat and drink that have communal tables or where you can sit close to others and strike up a conversation.
Frequent the Same Places
Visiting somewhere once gives you a chance to start talking to someone. Returning to the same place will mean you have more chances and you might start to get recognized. Going back to the same restaurant, cafe, store, or anywhere else means you might see the same staff or the other regulars who keep coming back. It might be something you do multiple times during one trip or if you decide to return to the same place on different trips, you can go back to your favorite spots.
Find Things to Do at Night
When you’re traveling alone, you might be reluctant to go out at night due to safety concerns. But there are ways you can keep yourself safe and enjoy yourself if you find the right things to do. Tell someone you know where you’re going and what time you plan to be back at your accommodation. Make new friends while you’re out but be cautious and avoid traveling elsewhere. Just like during the day, it can be a good idea to join an organized tour or event.
Traveling solo definitely doesn’t have to be lonely. You can meet other people and socialize as much or as little as you want.
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