Tips for travelling solo
I have just returned from a six week holiday where I traveled to Dubai, Europe and the UK solo. At the time I didn’t think too much about going solo, but when I returned so many of my friends and work colleagues asked me “how could you have done that?” and my response was “quite easily really!”
Considering the fear that anyone might experience travelling on their own, I decided to put together some preparation tips and ideas for how to travel alone safely.
My holiday preparation tips:
- I always take out travel insurance when I book my flights. I’m careful about who I’m insured with as cost, policy and excess needs to be considered in case I need to make a claim. I usually don’t go with the travel agent as I always feel there is so much pressure from the consultant to purchase it immediately.
- As I was travelling alone I couldn’t afford to rely on only one card so I took 3 different cards. Why? I needed a backup in case I had my bag stolen or left behind, or if an ATM took my card (anything is possible). I stored my cards in a different place and didn’t take them out with me when I ventured onto the streets. I didn’t carry too much foreign cash, only when I traveled Sail Croatia and payment was cash only. Always check your itinerary if you are meeting a tour.
- Transfers to hotels: I organised this online if I was arriving in the early morning or late at night and was unsure how to get to the hotel. Most times I caught the train or bus when I was familiar with the place I was staying in, which of course is much cheaper.
- Check your plan with your phone provided before you leave. I’m with Vodafone and was able to pay $5 a day for unlimited access overseas for phone calls and SMS. I then visited cafes that had Wi-Fi to access the internet. This gave me peace of mind to be able to keep in touch with family and friends while I was away.
- I advised family and friends I could be contacted via Facebook and Messenger. It was comforting to know that they received my messages instantly and were following along with my travels.
- I took with me an iPad, iPhone and camera with all of the charging adapters and an extra recharger. iPhones use so much extra charge when taking photos, I knew I would need the extra backup in case there weren’t any power points available.
- Some really useful apps to add to your phone include a currency converter, bookinghotels.com, Uber (yes, I used it in Paris and it was a fantastic service), banking, Facebook, Messenger, Viber, Waze and Skyscanner.
- Luggage, yes where does a girl begin? Always remember if you are solo you need to be prepared to carry you luggage yourself! Upstairs, lifting up into escalators trams and trains. Try to sort your clothes out before hand, and pack two weeks’ worth of clothing not the complete 6 weeks! If I bought a top or dress, something had to be thrown out. If you can, send a package back home but remember it can be expensive! If you use Air B&B make sure there is a lift to the apartment or you could be going up several flights of stairs.
Most of all, enjoy the journey, meeting new people, experiencing the culture and food of a different country and always keep in contact with your family. Travel safe!
Do you have any other tips to share about your travels?