Is solo international travel safe for women
6 simple tips for traveling alone: You'll never be lonely
You still want to see a lot of the big wide world, maybe you already have a (getting longer) bucket list? Then you are right here! Do many of your loved ones don’t like to travel or only venture to Mallorca once a year?
Are you thinking about traveling alone? Then you are even more correct here!
Pack the right things in your backpacker backpack, leave the last doubts, ifs and buts at home and off you go! In this article we have put together 6 ultimate tips for you to make “traveling alone” an unforgettable, positive experience.
6 tips: solo but not lonely!
What are your biggest worries before you go on a trip alone for the first time? Lonliness? Crime? Boredom or helplessness? Be sure, we had the same thoughts. And probably all the other solo travelers out there too. But at some point it's time to throw your fears overboard and just trust yourself. You will see, it's worth it!
Traveling alone is not difficult. If you follow a few basic rules, you won't be anywhere alone for long - unless you want to. Shyness doesn't pay off when traveling alone. Shake it off and approach people openly. You will be surprised how helpful and friendly they are from across the globe!
Asking someone for directions should be your easiest exercise. You can also approach other travelers without fear. Unite! True to the motto: The more the merrier!
Not only those who go on vacation alone know, the budget plays a major role. It helps enormously if you find cheap accommodation. In Asia, for example, there are very reasonable hostels for three euros per night including breakfast.
And where do you meet willing people to spend time? With a high probability right there. With their common rooms and shared rooms, hostels are true biotopes for sociable people. Here you can chat carefree - most people are open-minded here.
In the first few days of your vacation alone, it makes sense to have a plan. Once you find your way around, however, flexibility pays off. If you have made friends with nice people in one place, stay there a little longer. If the group moves on, join in - or do your own thing again.
Isn't that the nice thing about vacationing alone? Only you decide how it goes on for you.
The internet helps you travel alone. For example, you can research your next travel destination online. Use social media groups in your holiday destination or benefit from the community of various travel networks such as Planetbackpack.
But I advise against using the smartphone as your replacement travel companion. If you keep scrolling through your apps, you're missing out on what it's really about. And you certainly don't get to know people like that. That is why it makes much more sense to ask for directions on the street than to interview the search engine.
Hand on heart: What are the cheesiest sunsets, the whitest beaches or the most impressive skyscrapers if we don't share them? And by that we don't mean sharing it online in your profile, but enjoying the moment with real people in the same place.
Get in touch with locals. Instead of hanging out with your compatriots in Vietnam, Cape Town or Yucatán, take a look behind the scenes and get to know the locals. I'm sure they are proud to show you their culture. You will see how open people are all over the world.
The ultimate tip for getting in touch with locals: learn their language. Don't panic, a few common words or phrases are enough. The people are happy about your efforts and will receive you with open arms.
Before you go traveling alone, we should clarify the question of equipment. Packing your backpack or suitcase can be a challenge. As little as possible should be inside, after all, you have to lug your luggage. At the same time, as much as possible should be in there so that you have everything you need on the go.
If you don't have a (good) one yet, be inspired by our backpacker backpack test. A bag with an anti-theft function or a money belt for your day trips can also be helpful. Especially when traveling alone, it doesn't hurt to pay attention to additional security.
I always divide my objects into five categories:
- Technology (camera, chargers, etc.)
- travel pharmacy
- Organizational matters (passport, tickets, confirmations, etc.)
You can find more tips on packing in our ultimate packing list for backpacking.
The best destinations for your trip alone
You are spoiled for choice. 194 countries are waiting to be discovered by you. You could now just close your eyes, turn a globe and start where your finger lands. Or you can make the decision with the help of the following tips for traveling alone.
First, you should ask yourself a few questions: Which areas am I particularly interested in? What is my budget? How willing am I to experiment? Do I already have experience of going on vacation alone?
For the more daring: Solo at the end of the world
Many destinations are suitable for traveling alone. If you want to go on a solo vacation to save your wallet, Southeast Asia is the first choice. Do you remember the hostels for 3 euros per night? You can find it here!
Whether Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam or everything combined in one round trip - Asia is perfect for going on vacation alone. This is a popular start, especially for backpackers who are new to backpacking. You won't stay solo for long.
If you have a little more budget, we recommend Central and South America. The advantage: It is a travel mecca and therefore offers an excellent infrastructure for travelers. The continent fascinates us mainly because of its mystical cultures and the infectious joie de vivre of the locals.
The best thing about it: with a few bits of Spanish, you can get by in any country. In Central America you hardly have any problems with English either.
Far away with a sense of home
A little less exotic to start with? No problem! Go on vacation alone in Australia, New Zealand or Canada. Here you will find a fascinating flora and fauna with kangaroos or grizzlies and yet the culture is not entirely alien to you.
There is also a working holiday there if you want your break to last a little longer. Read more about this below.
Expedition to home
Does it always have to be the other end of the world? No! Do you already know all corners of your own continent? Often the wanderlust is so great that we overlook what is right under our noses: Europe has beautiful places to offer.
How about a trip to one of the impressive cities? Have you already thought of island hopping in Croatia? Do you know the picturesque landscape of Slovenia? Have you already experienced a polar night in the far north? The possibilities are limitless. If you want to travel alone, Europe is very suitable for beginners.
Home sweet home
If you have less time or willingness to experiment, you can approach a travel destination in Germany. Why fly for hours when we have our own access to the sea in our own country? Rügen, Sylt, Usedom, Borkum, Norderney, Föhr ... Here you will also find snow-white beaches, exotic animals (cute seals) and nice locals.
No matter where your vacation is going to go alone - stay open and let yourself be carried away by the incredible people and impressions. Have fun!
Holidays for solo travelers: the world is yours
Have you decided to travel solo? Wonderful! In order to make your travel plans even more specific, we have summarized the types of travel available for you here.
Single trip: there alone, back together
Combine the pleasant with the useful? Why not. Some travel companies specialize in travel for singles who want to meet other singles. Enjoying the relaxed holiday atmosphere with like-minded people and maybe meeting your future partner doesn't sound bad at all.
There are also special offers for “50 plus singles” or single people aged 60 and over. It should be said, however, that these package tours are typically more about club vacations than cultural trips. The search for a partner is in the foreground, not getting to know new countries.
Group travel: everything well organized
If the organizational aspect of traveling alone is too much for you, a group tour is in good hands. The advantage: excursions, transfers and accommodation are organized by the travel provider and you get to know your travel companions from day one.
The downside: you have to adapt. Simply changing plans and staying in one place because it seems magical to you is not possible. Traveling alone in a group is not entirely independent.
Backpacking: For true individualists
It couldn't be more individual. Backpacking allows you to concentrate on the essentials when traveling: Collect as many impressions as possible with little luggage. You decide where to go and how long you stay. Backpacking is not only inexpensive, but also by far the most exciting way to travel. For us, the best thing about it is the solidarity, the sense of togetherness among backpackers from all over the world.
Active vacation: nothing for slackers
Vacationers are completely different. There are those who lie on the beach for two weeks and want to move as little as possible. Filling your head with sights? No thanks. Total relaxation and just switching off? Yes, please.
On the other hand, there are those who want to use their vacation to pursue all the activities that are neglected in everyday life. Hiking, skiing, trekking, cycling, diving, surfing - the sporting possibilities are huge. You don't have to travel far for your active holiday, you can also explore the local mountain world.
Hiking tours: discover the world on foot
Speaking of active: hiking trips are a specific form of active vacation. Whether alone or in a group, whether on a guided hiking tour or on a pilgrimage on the Camino de Santiago. Here, too, the possibilities are varied. Enjoying nature, exploring the culture on foot and having a lot of time to let your thoughts wander are the advantages of these trips.
Work & Travel: How to combine vacation and everyday life
Another way to combine the pleasant with the useful is to use a work and travel visa. It allows you to stay abroad for up to 12 months, to travel around and to supplement your vacation budget by working.
In addition, you will work on your foreign language skills, meet new friends and have an interesting new point in your vita. Have you ever waited in a beach bar in Portugal? Worked on a ranch in Australia? No? The time has come.
Voluntourism: volunteering on vacation?
“Volunteer Leave”, what is it? Combined from the words volunteering and tourism, voluntourism is about combining holidays with meaningful, voluntary work. Do good and quench your thirst for adventure at the same time.
What sounds honorable, however, also has negative aspects and is subject to public criticism. A classic job in voluntourism is helping out in orphanages. The volunteers usually stay for a short time and are often insufficiently qualified, which can have serious social consequences for the protégés.
Dubious travel providers are also a problem in this industry. You should do your research well if you are thinking about volunteering (on vacation).
Short vacation: Your little break in between
Leave the country for a few days over Christmas? Fly to the sea last minute? Who doesn't dream now and then of just dropping everything to get other thoughts? A short vacation pays off, it doesn't always have to be a round trip through several countries.
Round trip: see as much as possible
But sometimes it can be a little more. A round trip allows you to see as much of a country as possible in a relatively short time. You might even combine several countries on your tour.
Whether you are traveling alone or with friends, whether it is a guided or self-organized tour, it is important not to stress yourself. It doesn't matter how many world-famous sights you can tick off the list, but how many unforgettable moments your trip brings you.
Study trip: learning by doing
"You have to travel to learn.", Mark Twain already knew. On a trip you learn a lot about yourself and about the countries and cultures in which you move. If you heed the tip to seek a lot of contact with locals, you will also pick up some snippets of language.
You will learn or improve a foreign language even more intensively on a study trip. You travel, study and discover the world in a group. The organizers organize excursions and fun events that weld together. Here you might even make friendships for life.
If you are studying at a university, find out about scholarships abroad. Studying abroad for a semester is an incomparable experience.
Bus trip: across the country on big wheels
Bus trips are for retirees? This is no longer the case! There are a lot of exciting discovery journeys especially for younger vacationers who want to explore a country comfortably in the bus.
Whether by bus through Ireland or Scandinavia or to the Rocky Mountains - traveling with a group of like-minded people has its advantages. The making of contacts goes by itself and you automatically have a community with which you can share what you have experienced. For the individualists among you, however, it may be oppressive to stick to the tight schedule of a bus trip. You have to meet departure times on time.
Independent and self-confident: traveling alone as a woman
Many women do not dare to quench their thirst for adventure. Simply travel on and off, alone and independently to another country and start looking for something new and yourself. It is usually the first statement you come across as a woman when you tell someone about your travel plans: “Do you dare? I wouldn't feel safe. "
Yes why not? If anything, then the many male backpackers and globetrotters should be just as afraid. So don't let foreign fears spoil your appetite for traveling.
If you want to go on vacation alone as a woman, you will likely be extra careful anyway. But: You are certainly also mindful when you are alone in your hometown (in the evening). Traveling alone is not much different.
In some countries people behave differently towards women due to their culture than in Europe. In some places, out of respect for the local women and men, you won't show as much skin as you can on the beach in Spain.
As a woman traveling alone, you sometimes have experiences with lewd looks or intrusive conversations. Admittedly, this is uncomfortable and annoying, but in most cases not dangerous - and it can happen to you at home too.
European destinations are ideal for those starting out in solo travel. Ireland, Great Britain, Italy ... there is a lot to see here, but the cultures are similar to those at home. You feel more at home, this strengthens your self-confidence and helps you to travel safely.
Those of you who like to experiment can also dare to go to Southeast Asia without hesitation. Solo travelers are the order of the day here. If you don't want to worry about your carrier top, choose Hindu or Buddhist places like Bali or Thailand.
One tip for women traveling alone is Australia. Here you will find western culture, thousands and thousands of other (single) travelers, an unbeatable infrastructure for travelers and breathtaking backdrops.
Stereotype alert: Traveling alone as a man is probably not much different. Except that men are unlikely to worry endlessly about potential problems beforehand. But only when they appear? We look forward to comments from men!
Our conclusion: Traveling alone is addicting
Give yourself a jolt, overcome your doubts and dare to go on an adventure. Give yourself the chance to discover the world on your own. You will have unforgettable experiences and return enriched.
Which travel styles you choose or combine is up to you, after all, you don't need to actively consider anyone. Still, you don't have to be alone or lonely. With our tips you can quickly find a connection, if you want to. We have also become addicted to peacefully enjoying wonderful moments in dreamy spots on our earth without a soul.
What experiences have you had with traveling alone? What were or are your biggest worries? Do you have any tips for future travelers? Let us know in the comments!
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