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Friday, January 8, 2010

The One and Only - Benefits of Traveling Solo

From young to the retirees, man and woman, people from all walks are traveling solo. According to The Independent, Google searches for “solo travel” were up almost a third in 2014 compared with 2013. So it seems more and more single people are giving in to their wanderlust and looking to trot the globe alone. And why not, solo travel has several benefits. 

You can forge new, meaningful friendships

Without a companion, you’re more open to meeting the local people and gaining unique insights into their way of life. Solo travel also provides the opportunity to make new friendships that last a lifetime. Other travellers that you meet can also provide useful information during the trip, such as what to see, what to avoid and how to save money.

You can choose when you want to be alone and when you like to be with others. Cruise holidays have long been a popular choice for single travellers, especially older people. One problem of cruise travel is the single cabin. If you’re traveling solo and want to meet people occasionally but prefer not to travel with a group all the time, Saga Travel has ships with several cabins for single occupants. 

There are also get-togethers before each port for those who prefer to go ashore with some companions.

You learn to be independent

With no companion to discuss and plan the itineraries, you’re forced to take up the tasks yourself. Traveling solo also allows you to gain life experience by discovering routes alone and learn new skills such as navigation. By taking yourself out of your comfort zone and trying things you would never have done such as flyboarding and kitesurfing, you make the most of the opportunities travel provides to try new things. This can build your confidence.

Freedom and flexibility

There are no disagreements about where to visit, stay and eat. If you wish to extend your trip, skip a destination or change your location, there’s no schedule to worry about. You do as you please according to your own timetable. The freedom to devote your time without complying with another person’s needs can eliminate travel stress.

Discover your inner self

Traveling alone give you the chance to be alone and search for your inner self. With all the time you have for reflection and relaxation, you get to know yourself better — who you really are and what matters to you. You’re free from distractions of daily life while enjoying solitude.

More people are traveling solo not because they’re loners. They prefer to go alone because it leads them to meet the local people and other travellers. It’s just as much a spiritual journey as a physical one. You just have to enjoy the ride. 

Images by mynameisharsha and geezaweezer, used under Creative Commons license 



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