Traveling alone is the most beautiful experience anyone can have in their life. Most of us keep wondering about a solo nomadic trip but never dare to just because we are not ready to face the unseen or unheard. Also there is a conception that traveling alone can be troublesome but trust me it’s not once you get used to the unpredictability and start loving it.
If you want to plan a solo trip and just waiting for the right time to set yourself moving then here are few tips that will help you out for sure.
Carry minimal luggage – I have learned this the toughest way possible and it is not only about traveling alone but applies to anywhere and wherever you are traveling. Traveling alone itself means to pack as less as but enough so that you can spend your entire vacations without ending up smelling like a pig. Also pack only depending on what that places requires so that you don’t end up carrying unnecessary load. For example you don’t need to pack number of jeans and formal clothes on a Goa trip because that will make no sense. Keeping your luggage as much as required will also help you in carrying it if you prefer walking to long distances.
Eat where locals eat–Instead of going to pricy tourist restaurants better visit hotels and dhabas that is meant only for locals. They serve fresh cooked is more authentic in taste than overpriced tourist restaurants. As a bonus advantage you get to talk and interact with locals that way you get to know a lot of new things about that place.
Use Local facilities – Using public transport facilities like local buses and local trains make travel experience better and cheaper. Because it is cheaper than Luxury buses or hiring a cab and local transport is more better frequency that will save waiting time.
When traveling keep your eyes open for Cloak rooms, these places keep your luggage for given time on specified charge that will save you from taking a hotel room for the same if you are just in that place for a day. Cloak rooms are normally available on railway stations and state bus stands. Same can be said about public toilets and washrooms if you want to save yourself from taking a hotel to relieve yourself.
Keep yourself safe – This itself is subjected to another blog but your entire travel experience depends on these three words. Don’t wander off, keep informing your friends where you are, frequently live tweet or update your Facebook status. Keep extra sim cards in case network goes off. Always keep a map in your hand and learn how to use it.
Never plan but do your homework – Best trips are the ones that go unplanned, but this doesn’t mean that you don’t need to do your homework. A little research about that place can help you a lot. Take a quick glimpse on the internet and take an idea on what the place has to offer. Keep a journal or printouts for help when you are on road. Take a special look on local culture and do’s and don’ts that is specified to certain places.
Never go on trip packages – Travel package operators provide travel package facilities and charge hefty sum for that same. If you are traveling alone the never go that way for 1) The amount you spend on that package will make room for two more places if you decide to move alone. 2) That won’t make sense as you are supposed to be ‘traveling alone’. In any case, never go to a tour operator unless they are providing something that you need to try or visit but you can’t on your own. Keep walking, ask locals and in the end you’ll find your way anyways and in case you don’t then there is always a second time.
Meet new people – I love meeting new people when I am on move doesn’t matter if it is a local fisherman or a foreigner. When traveling make yourself read to meet new people. This also helps you from becoming lonely at some point of time, also it simply adds more to your experiences. One way to meet locals is by choosing a stay home instead of a pricy hotel. Another way to do this is by staying in dorms or public restrooms and befriend people you meet there. This will cost you nothing and will only add to your memories when you come back home.
Trust your instincts – When alone, you need to trust yourself and no one. Everyone who looks friendly may not be what they seem to be. Trust everyone and still don’t trust no-one. Don’t accept free drinks or food if your gut feeling tells you not to do that. Don’t follow someone you don’t know into wilderness or somewhere you are not sure about. Keep yourself in public places if accompanied with strangers, lie a little and when needed don’t hesitate from running away.
I hope my experiences and tips will make your next or first solo trip much better. If you have anything else to tell from your experience then post a comment and let everyone know.