We’ve all been through this, right?
You find a friend who is willing to travel with you, go back and forth for weeks about dates and destinations, finally agree on where, when and how your trip will be, you get super excited and start preparations, and suddenly something stops your trip from happening.
One of people’s biggest fears is the fear of traveling to a foreign country alone. Due to the way certain countries are portrayed in the media, for those who have never experienced it, solo travel is considered unsafe.
But that’s not the case, there are several benefits to traveling alone and in this blog we’ll tell you some of them.
- You Get To See More Places
Traveling alone gives you the opportunity to step off the traditional path, takes you out of your shell, forces you to fully immerse yourself in the place and the local culture and allows you the freedom to do what you want, whenever you want. When we travel with other people, we always have to find a common ground.
Alone, you have more freedom to go wherever you want and can plan according to your possibilities, including financially. You can choose to spend more or less time at each destination, what activities to do and where to eat.
Traveling alone encourages you to follow your intuition and instincts, and often yields incredibly unique stories and memories you wouldn’t have experienced otherwise.
- You Become Fearless
When traveling alone you develop a tenacity and courage within you because you are placed in situations where you literally have to step out of your comfort zone to enjoy the trip.
Whether it’s unrolling a language you don’t know that well, asking strangers for information, or simply moving around the city on your own. During a trip there are several situations in which we test our capacity and limits, which teaches us a lot about ourselves and makes us grow as individuals.
After traveling alone a few times, you’ll see how the things that used to give you chills won’t seem so terrifying anymore. Traveling alone will give you many opportunities to develop independence, self-reliance, and confidence in your ability to take care of yourself.
- Making Friends With People From All Over The World
When you are traveling alone, you have more opportunities to make friends. When you’re not part of a group, you’re forced to interact with people you wouldn’t normally talk to and it’s easier for others to talk to you! Most of the time, people are very nice and open, and there’s always that other person traveling alone as well, whether at the hostel, the museum or on the bus.
In contrast, sometimes when you have no one around to talk to, you are forced to be content with your own company! Most of the time, you’ll have some distraction-free time and space to get to know yourself better while traveling alone.
Tips for making friends during your solo trip
Stay in hostels
Staying in a hostel is your best resource for making new friends while traveling alone.
- Have fun in the common areas – there are a lot of people in hostels who are also traveling alone and looking to make new friends.
- Take part in the hostel’s activities – most offer some kind of social activity or small group tours. All you have to do is show up and be approachable and you’ll soon be talking to someone!
- Drop in for breakfast – Spend time in the kitchen and ask other guests about their plans for the day over breakfast.
If you are planning a trip to Mexico, be sure to check out Mayan Monkey Hostel in Cancun, Tulum and Los Cabos. It is the best place to stay in the Mexican Caribbean and the ideal place to make friends.
- Be accessible
Pay attention to your body language, here are some things you should be aware of if you want to make new friends:
- Minimize the use of electronics – if your head is stuck on your phone and you’re wearing headphones all the time, most people will automatically stay away.
- Avoid closed body language – arms and legs crossed, head down, these things signal to others that you want to be alone.
- Remember to smile – research shows that people tend to view neutral facial expressions as slightly negative, so don’t be shy with your smiles.
- Take group tours
A great way to quickly visit a city’s highlights and find where you’d like to spend more time is to take a walking tour. Nowadays in almost every city there are free or paid tours that you can take as a group and discover the destination with a local.
It’s a great opportunity to immerse yourself in the local culture and also meet other travelers. A simple “Where are you from?” or “What have you done since coming to town?” is an easy way to start a conversation.
So now what are you waiting for to start traveling alone? Don’t forget to check out Mayan Monkey Hostel if Mexico is on your wishlist, we guarantee you won’t regret it.