When I started this blog, I promised myself I would be honest and try to avoid sugar coating the travel lifestyle as some blogs tend to do- after all, that’s what Instagram’s for, right?? So as I wrote a post yesterday highlighting all the positive AMAZING sides of solo travel, I’m here today to point out the negative aspects. So without further ado, here are the realities of solo travel:
There will be no one to split costs with
On a practical note, while solo travel allows you to really stick to your budget, there may be instances where it would be beneficial to split costs whether it be the cost of a hotel, airbnb, or taxi ride. Maybe you want to stay in a small village that doesn’t have hostels offering dorm beds, so you will be stuck covering the cost of an airbnb by yourself. Many times, I’ve found myself wishing I’ve had someone to split a taxi or uber to the airport with when I’ve felt too run down to figure out public transportation.
There will be no one who shared your exact experience
Sure, you will meet great people and may even form a tight group of friends for a few days, but there will be no one to look back on the entire trip with who understands everything you did and everyone you met. You can try to relay the experience to friends and family, but honestly no one really cares to hear the details, and its hard to put the experience into words anyway. As much as I love solo travel, there is something to be said about having someone to turn to and say, “hey remember that time…”
You must be comfortable doing things alone often
You will most likely be able to find someone to explore with daily if you so choose, but I remember instances where this didn’t happen, and who wants to miss out on eating paella in Valencia just because you can’t find anyone who’s hungry when you are. If you can’t comfortably eat at a restaurant alone or go for a solo hike, you’re not going to enjoy yourself because this may have to happen from time to time.
You WILL get lonely
Understand that you will go through periods of missing friends either from home or ones that you just met but had to leave when you moved on to your next place. This is okay. Just know that these feelings will pass, so it’s okay to indulge them momentarily. You might stay somewhere that has a totally unfriendly atmosphere and you won’t meet anyone, but as you are solo, you have complete freedom to move to another hostel or another city altogether. Also note that your new best friend could potentially walk through the door at any moment.
Solo travel is probably not for everyone. However, I think that more people would like it than expected if they just gave it a try. For me, its ultimate freedom.