First Time Solo Traveller

Travel Forums Introductions First Time Solo Traveller

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1. Posted by RagingHamster (Budding Member 2 posts) 15w Star this if you like it!

Hey all, hope everyone is doing OK - I've always wanted to go travelling, but for whatever reason I never had anyone to go with and my impression of travelling was that you needed to go in a group or at least with someone and that you didn't meet people along the way or socialise etc so I always said I could go once I found someone like a partner or a group of like-minded friends. Long story short, that hasnt happened and I'm not getting any younger, so I'm going to do it by myself - my question is, where would be a good place to start? The last thing I want is to go into a catastrophic trip that puts me off ever trying again for life, so would be grateful if anyone has any advice that they could share. Thanks in advance!

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3. Posted by RagingHamster (Budding Member 2 posts) 15w Star this if you like it!

Hi Charlie,

Thanks for this, looks really interesting :)

4. Posted by Sander (Moderator 6010 posts) 15w 1 Star this if you like it!

Where to go depends a lot on your personal interests. Why have you always wanted to go travelling? What images come to mind when you think of what you envisioned? Are you interested in seeing/experiencing history/culture? In unspoilt nature? Food? Adventure activities?

Much though most anyone posting on this website will love travelling, and will endlessly extol its virtues given half the chance, going travelling is not a necessity.

Still, assuming you're from a "first world" country, and have a reasonable amount of money to spend, my main recommendation for a first trip is probably to stick to such a country for your first trip, so that you'll have to get only slightly out of your comfort zone. Depending on where you're from and what your interests are, Europe and New Zealand would probably be my first recommendations for areas of the world to consider, as they're jampacked with history/culture and nature/adventure activities, plus both have superlative infrastructure for getting around as a traveller. If you write something about your interests, amount of time you have available, and a very broad budget range you're thinking about, I'm sure you'll get some specific recommendations, maybe even something approaching example itineraries.

If you're below 30 (probably not, but I've seen "not getting any younger" used surprisingly often by young people), you might want to consider youth hostels for accommodation, since they'll be cheap, and offer really easy socializing with fellow travellers. (They're certainly suitable for all age groups, and I've met many much older travellers there, but the vast majority of people there will be in their 20s.)

(N.B. Reading "Charlie"'s reply: I'm assuming independent travel here, as that's what I've always done. I'd recommend against a package tour, as the pace of those tends to be grueling, cramming in so many "must see sights" that it doesn't give you the time to actually experience anything. Of course, I can see the appeal of just handing someone a lot of money and having them take care of everything, and it certainly works for many people - but it might just end up being one of those "catastrophic" trips which you're afraid of. Much preferable, imho, to have the ability to change your plans on the fly as you slowly discover what type of travel style and experiences will work for you.)

[ Edit: Edited on 16 Nov 2023, 15:25 GMT by Sander ]

5. Posted by karazyal (Travel Guru 5388 posts) 15w Star this if you like it!

Hi.

Where are you starting from?

How far will you go for a first time solo trip?

The month you travel will determine the weather you get and sometimes the cost of flights and maybe hotels. (Beaches, skiing, diving, history, etc.)

You should work up a budget for daily spending not including the cost of flights. For me, round trip is usually cheaper than 2 one way flights. How much you have for day to day spending will determine how much you pay for accommodation and other daily expenses.

Men and women who drink too much alcohol sometimes get in trouble, so be careful. I have been to some countries where retired ladies are traveling alone without problems. And younger people using mommy and daddy's money on trips overseas usually without too many problems.

My advice is to have at least a couple credit cards with you for emergencies that may come up. I travel with cash, debit cards and credit cards. I am a cheap traveler and pay cash for my cheap hotel rooms, some other travelers put everything on credit cards. I personally do not use credit cards overseas except for the occasional flight booked overseas. I do use debit cards in ATMs for cash when I run out of what I start out with. Some travelers try to put everything on plastic, for me I avoid putting cheap stuff on plastic.

Any country you intend to visit will have their particular entry requirements. Sometimes so much cash to show you are not a deadbeat, sometimes a verifiable flight out of the country within a particular time frame. Of course you will usually need a passport.

  • There are charitable organizations that do arrange flights overseas. You pay for your flights, you pay for your hotels and food. You do meet up and travel with similar tourists. Save the world type stuff, help animals, sometimes work on digs, like with Earthwatch.

Up to you.

6. Posted by karazyal (Travel Guru 5388 posts) 15w Star this if you like it!

Depending on the country you are visiting often you can arrange a tour in person if you want. Some hotels may have tour desks or the staff can direct you to a travel agency nearby. Choose what interests you and be picked up for the tour. Then at the conclusion brought back to your hotel.

Always nice for tourists to learn how to say "hello" and "thank you" in the language of the country you visit!

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