The Pros and Cons of Travelling Solo
The good, the bad and the ugly
Travelling solo has been one of the best decisions I ever made in my life.
During my trips by myself, I have been to some incredible places and met loads of people, some of whom I regard as close friends to this day!
I can’t envision how my life would have turned out had I not decided to head to Australia for a year by myself!
However, despite all the fun I’ve had, travelling by myself has its downsides.
The highs can be soaring, but the lows can be excruciatingly painful.
I firmly believe everyone should try travelling by themselves at some point in their life.
You’ll learn so a lot about yourself in a short space. Do it for too long though, and the downsides become ever more apparent.
You’ll become more confident
I am a much more confident person since I started travelling.
Before, I was shy, awkward, and terrified of meeting new people. I was by no means socially inept, I just had barely any self-confidence.
Travelling helped me to discover my self-confidence, and become more at ease with myself.
It sounds like a cliche, but it’s true.
I realised I could travel to the other side of the world by myself, and not only survive, but thrive!
It was a huge confidence boost!
Once you let go of self-limiting beliefs and believe in yourself, your confidence will soar!
You’ll become better at meeting new people
If you don’t attempt to make friends during your travels, you’re going to be lonely.
Travelling solo, you are forced to meet new people. You simply have no choice! It would be extremely boring otherwise!
I always found meeting new people a struggle before I went travelling. I’m a naturally shy person so it can be difficult to open myself up at times.
I will level with you, travelling did not change me into a social butterfly overnight. I still get nervous about meeting new people, but after meeting thousands of people during my travels, it’s much easier than it was before.
You have to remember, most people are in the same boat as you. They may be travelling by themselves too.
They may appear like they have it all together on the outside, but inside they are just as nervous as you about meeting people.
Just go over and start a conversation. What’s the worst that could happen?
It’s easier to meet new people travelling solo
On all of my solo trips, I’ve had no problem meeting new people.
In fact, it was much easier than I thought it would be!
There are a lot more people travelling alone than you would think. That means there are a lot of people opening to meeting others.
Whenever I have travelled as part of a group, I have found myself less open to meeting new people.
The need to get out there and mingle is not as strong, because you already have a social network.
You will see too if you go to a hostel. There are already social circles formed when you arrive.
It can be intimidating to approach a group if you’re by yourself. Whereas striking up a conversation with someone on their own is much easier!
You don’t have to worry about anyone else
When you’re travelling by yourself the only person you have to worry about is yourself.
This makes things a lot smoother.
If you’re feeling down, you can take it easy for a day, safe in the knowledge you’re not letting anyone down.
It can be difficult to do this when you’re with others. You almost feel obligated to take their needs into consideration, and sometimes, elevate their needs above your own.
As bad as it sounds, you can be selfish. While we may be taught to be caring and sharing, when you’re by yourself on the other side of the world, a little time to yourself isn’t going to hurt anybody!
It can be lonely
This is arguably the biggest con of travelling by yourself.
It may be a release for the first few months, but, gradually, the feeling will wear away, and you will be left feeling lonely.
It’s only natural, we are social creatures. As much as it can be taxing at times, we love to be in the company of others.
It’s how humans progressed to where we find ourselves today.
No matter how many friends you make, or how many trips you take, you will become lonely at some point on your solo travels.
This is why it’s crucial to interact with others.
You don’t want to get into your head
You yearn for a partner
Travelling solo has made me fiercely independent and confident in m myself, but there are times when I yearn to share my experiences with someone else!
Travelling around the world is fantastic, and it can be an eye-opening experience to do it by yourself.
However, it can be depressing when you have no one to share those experiences with.
I firmly believe travel is better with company. That sunset may have been great, but it can feel empty to witness it by yourself.
You are only getting one perspective. Your own.
With a partner, you can challenge each other. You might see things, they might see them another.
Plus, you get to share all those experiences together and grow closer in each other’s company.
It’s a much more rewarding experience at times than if you are by yourself.
After all, no man is an island!
It’s not as safe
This is not to say travelling solo is unsafe, just that it is less safe than travelling in a group.
It’s quite simple, would a thief or conman rather, a bunch of travellers, or someone travelling alone?
Nine times out of ten, they would target the solo traveller. Simply because they don’t have anyone close to back them up.
I can count the number of incidents I’ve had travelling alone on one hand. They don’t occur too happen.
However, it depends on where you go and what you are doing. If you’re heading to Alaska by yourself, it’s going to be dangerous.
Whereas, if you’re going to Europe in a group, you’re less likely to experience trouble.
Remember, if you’re travelling alone, you have to rely on yourself. Be responsible and you’ll be fine.
It costs more
There is no doubt travelling alone costs more money.
When travelling with a partner, or as part of a group, you can split the costs. When you’re by yourself, you have to pay for everything, no questions asked.
If you want to do a tour, it costs a lot.
If you want a room to yourself, it costs a lot.
Without anyone to share a room, food or tour with, your bill will slowly, but surely, add up!
This is simply the reality of travelling by yourself. You have to stump the bill because no one else is going to.
You either like it or lump it, it’s that simple!