olo traveling is so underrated, especially for women because of safety. But when done right, it could be a spectacular once-in-a-lifetime experience. Before you travel, be sure to research to make sure you’ll be safe in the country or state you’re travelling to. Without further ado, here are 5 things I’ve learnt from travelling on my own during my gap year along with some tips to get the most out of solo travelling.
Your confidence grows
You grow your confidence as you are able to ask around for directions cheerily. You don’t stumble on your words and you might get a local’s advice on how things work around the area you’re in. Getting to know the dos and don’ts from a local can help you travel safely and easily. Which area of town to go to or avoid? Which restaurants to try out? What are the local etiquettes? Best travel-friendly mobile plans? Confidence is your first step to getting all the answers when you travel.
You budget well
Before you travel, your money-saving skills would improve so much, especially if you’re determined. The extra working hours will come easy when you have a goal. From getting the best affordable airfare and accommodation to knowing how to cook if you don’t want to eat out all the time, you’ll learn it all under your thumb. This means going to the farmers’ market to buy and support local ingredients as well as using cheaper and more efficient means of travel (i.e. UberPool, Tuk Tuks, Monorails).
You become more assertive
When you travel alone, there’s no one to distract you from doing whatever you want. Wherever and whenever. Your pick. If you truly want to do something, you’ll naturally plan right to achieve it. If you want to climb mountains, do it. If you insist on staying in for the morning to read a book you just got from the local bookstore, then do it also. It’s your time so you get to decide what it is you really want to do.
Your social skills improve
You are more approachable when you’re alone, opposed to when you’re with someone beside you. I may have had someone stop me in the middle of the streets because of how cool my pants looked when I was in Melbourne. Or that nice barista in San Francisco who gave me free nut butter toasts along with strangers taking care of me when I got wasted at a party there. Or that waiter in Thailand who gave me a ride home and asked if he could bring me out the next day. From meeting new people and learning about their culture, you have a story to tell when you get home and that is the essential souvenir from your travelling you should have. Pro tip: If you’re single, hop onto Tinder. I promise you, it’s worth it. *wink wink*
You become even more self-aware
Being on your own, you immerse yourself into the environment more deeply. Everything hits on a personal level because you’re making all the choices. You focus more on everything you do, so you’re being actively aware on what makes you feel good and what doesn’t. By that, you eliminate what doesn’t feel right and focus on the better side of things. Through active learning, you’ll be able to bring that level of focus into your daily life, no matter where you are. That will kickstart the practice of a good habit to self-care and your future self will thank current you.
By trying these 5 life skills together, it makes solo travelling such an unbelievable experience. When will your next solo travel be?