Hey love! I’m finally getting around to writing about the experience I had traveling solo. If you read part 1 and 2 of my blog posts about my trip to Tulum, Mexico then you know I traveled solo for the first time out of the country. That was a decision I made after a friend could no longer take the trip. I was fearful of the idea at first because of the unknown.
Some of the thoughts going through my head were, who was going to have my back when needed? How was I going to enjoy various activities by myself? Who was going to take my pictures? What if someone found out I was traveling by myself? What if something happens to me?
Once I got over the fear of the unknown, I faith-ed it out and started doing some research about solo traveling for women. Other than that, I kept receiving a lot of positive information about solo travel and so many signs were there to just go for it. There were a lot of solo travel tips for women that I discovered and now I even have some of my own to share after my solo experience.
As you move outside of your comfort zone, what was once the unknown and frightening becomes your new normal.
– Robin S. Sharma
Life surprises you when you least expect it, and in my situation the un-expectancy almost destroyed my travel plans. But in the end, I was proud that I didn’t let the unexpected mess up a good thing and did something that I’ve never done before. I figured it was part of my personal growth journey and learning to be a strong independent woman again (after marriage). To me, it was the moment I chose to live on my terms in a new way. I trusted God had me covered and he did. I had the most amazing time and met some amazing people. Also, I did the things I wanted and when I wanted without consulting with someone else. It was a nice benefit to traveling solo.
On my blog post, “Exploring Tulum: Things You Should Include on Your Itinerary”, I talk about the beautiful experience I had in the country as a solo tripper. I received a lot of comments on social media and outside of social media from women that want to try solo travel. I wanted to share how you could embark on your first solo trip by giving you tips from my experience and based on my research from others. Girl, you can do it because I did it.
The man who goes alone can start today; but he who travels with another must wait till that other is ready.
– Henry David Thoreau
Behold, Solo Travel Tips for Women (The adventurous woman)
1 Look up a list of the safest places to travel for females (see one here). There are a lot of places out of the country and in your country that are safe to travel solo. It isn’t as dangerous as some may think.
2 Stay in tourist areas. This includes where you stay. I personally would choose hotels over an Airbnb because of possible safety issues. But for some, Airbnb can be safe too.
3 Use only trusted transportation and do your best to use transportation that can track your whereabouts (like Uber and Lyft). Trusted shuttle services are great too, which you can usually find online and read reviews on the company. I used the cab services once I got to Tulum, but I only used cab companies that were referred by my hotel.
4 Plan your itinerary before you leave and give that information, including where you’re staying, to trusted family members and friends. Research the distances of the places you plan to go from where you’ll be staying ahead of of time too. It’s great to get familiar with the place you’ll be traveling to beforehand and not just when you arrive.
5 Take photos (and videos) every place you go and send to family members. This way they know you are safe (for the worriers) and it lets them know where you were and at what time. Just do yourself a favor and leave out posting on social media with your location. Wait until you get home to do that.
6 Make a copy of your identifications (including your passport) just in case they get lost or stolen. Leave a copy with a family member or friend and put one in a safe place like your carry-on luggage while your on your trip.
7 Book your flights for morning or afternoon arrival and departure. Avoid red eye or flights at night. For one thing, being out at night isn’t recommended when you don’t know where you’re going and many of the hotels don’t have really late check-in times. You have to plan for possible flight delays and they do happen.
8 As a follow up, book hotels with a 24-hour front desk just in case you end up arriving late. Last thing you’ll want to be is a tourist in an unfamiliar place with no where to go.
9 Know how long it takes to get from the airport to your hotel if you decide to take a taxi. This way you won’t fall victim to being jerked around or taken advantage of when it comes to the rates. Or try a ride share option instead of riding solo in a taxi.
10 Always walk with your head up and confidently. You never want to look like you don’t know where you’re going even if you don’t.
11 Use your best judgment at all times. Always be aware.
12 Dining alone you can love it or hate it. If you’re traveling alone you have no choice. If you’re fine with sitting by yourself at a table, bring a book for company if you’d like. If you think you’ll feel awkward, sit at the bar or booth.
13 If you go out at night stay in open and public places.
14 There’s a program you can sign up for in case of an emergency. This program is called the Free Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) for U.S. Citizens travelling internationally.
Oh and don’t forget to get yourself a cell phone tripod to take some photos on your own. Asking others to take photos of you is great and all, but most times it’s best just to take them on your own and tripods gives you that ability to.
There are so many solo travel groups as well that you could look into traveling with. More and more women are traveling solo around the world everyday because electronics makes it so much easier. You really don’t have to wait on others anymore, and never really did. The world awaits, so what are you waiting on.
Now it’s on you to do something with these tips and tools on solo travel. I really do hope that this blog post has motivated and inspired you to go on a solo journey of your own.
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