5 Reasons Traveling Solo Is Better Than Traveling With Others

Last year was my first time traveling solo. Not because I really wanted to travel alone, but more because I didn´t want to travel with other, but more because I didn´t have anyone else to travel with. I didn´t have anything against it though, so I just decided to go with it and embrace the loneliness. To my pleasant surprise though, I actually liked it more than traveling with a set group of people. Now, I am not saying that traveling alone is always better than traveling with others (this is obviously up to personal preferences), but there are a couple of reasons why traveling alone certainly beats traveling with others. Here are the reasons I thought traveling solo beats traveling in a group.

#1 Solo trips actually happen

How often have you not planned a trip with someone only to have them bail on you?

Or how about you wanting to visit that one city that you have been dreaming of since childhood, while your friend wants to go somewhere else because the parties are better, and you and up having to compromise.

With solo travel, it´s up to you. You set the budget, you decide the destination and you make it happen. No need to wait on others or compromise on your own dreams.

#2 Flexibility

My favorite part. I could make my own plan without having to talk to anyone else. If I wanted to go to the beach, I could go to the beach. If on my way to the beach I thought I wanted to go skydiving, I could. Of course you can do this too with other people, but the more people you are traveling with the harder it gets to make everybody happy.

One day I was tired, so I stayed in the hostel the whole day. Nobody nagging about being hungry when I wasn´t, nobody I had to convince I wanted to eat when they weren´t hungry. You do you. That is one of the reasons I like hostels so much. The people around you are super friendly, but they also let everybody be themselves.

I often met other people in a hostel that had some kind of awesome plan, so I would just join them and the only one I had to convince was myself. Unless you have the perfect travel buddy who thinks EXACTLY alike, it is absolutely perfect.

#3 You meet more people

“Don’t you feel lonely when you are traveling alone?”

That is probably the most heard question, and at the same time it’s probably the most common misconception of all. It works two ways; when you are alone you are more forced to socialize with new people, but you also look more approachable when you are sitting somewhere by yourself then when you are making out with your significant other in some corner or speaking your native language with a friend.

To be honest the moments I have actually felt alone are extremely rare, and I can only think of one occasion. Every time I arrived to a new hostel within an hour I had made new friends who were going somewhere and invited me to come along. Yeah, sometimes the people you meet aren´t going to be your best friends. Some people are really strange. But it´s all part of the experience, and I personally love the stories other people have to tell.

Being alone also makes it easier to meet up with locals. For example (if you are single) you can use Tinder when being abroad and ask people to show you a bit of the city you are staying in. You can also join Facebook groups or the couch surfing site and try to meet people that way. It´s your party!


#4 It’s not nearly as lonely as you think

This sort of goes hand in hand with the thing I said before, but I still wanted to make a different point for it. I have seen a lot of people who are traveling with someone else and at some point on their trip they get annoyed with the other person. It happens, when you spend days and days with one person and you are tired, it happens.

So when people ask me if I didn´t feel alone I tell them “Sure, I felt alone at times, but it´s probably for the same amount of time you and your travel buddy usually spend not talking to each other because you have just had enough of each other¨. The fear of being alone shouldn´t hold you back, certainly not in countries often visited by tourists. Trust me, you will find a travel buddy faster than you can say “Why didn´t I bring a travel buddy?¨.

#5 It’s so much easier

Because of the flexibility, but also because there is usually always place for one more person, but not always for two. You don´t have to coordinate vacations, you don´t have to make sure you both sort of have the same amount to spend etc.

And I have been in countless situations where a couple or group was sent away from a hostel because it was too full, while there was always space for me. Same with tours, activities and bus tickets. If you want to travel cheaply you can even try couch surfing or stay at a friends place. People often have room for one, but for groups of two and up it gets a lot trickier.

#6 Get comfortable with/by yourself

Those who have been on exchange will know why even being with other people abroad, you still get more independent. The fact that you don´t have someone else to guide you, you can make your own decisions, makes you more comfortable with yourself. Yes, I know this sounds very cheesy, but I think it´s really good to spend some time alone every once in a while. The thing is, you are not actually alone, you are constantly surrounded by people! But you are still by yourself, and that´s very different. When nobody from your country/culture/language is around, you get to know yourself a little better and it makes you more aware of things.

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