Traveling Alone: Why I do it, Why I like it, & How I do it

So many people I'm sure are having mini-heart attacks when I say, "I'm alone." "It's just me." So many people back home tell me, "please be safe." Haven't you seen Taken?" "Why must you go alone?"

First of all, Taken is a movie. My father is not some international spy killer or whatever.

You still need to be safe and aware of course. I don't throw safety to the wind.

Second, I have friends that I'm sure would be more than happy to accompany me on my adventures. Sometimes it's just easier to pack my bags and go. I'm on my own schedule and I can move as I please.

I think my sister and I grew up with a "honeybadger" attitude. We're going to do what we want to do and we usually give little care to what others think. Sure, it pisses some people off and others think it's a good quality. That's just how we are. We got it from our father. If it doesn't work at first, adjust, learn and do it again.

That's just me.

I've always been perfectly fine doing stuff on my own, I'd rather do something alone than to miss out on the experience. I think people who know me understand that I'm quite an independent soul. Yet, I still love to be around others. We were made to have friendships! Adam was lonely... so Eve came into the picture.

I have complied a few things that I think might be helpful for those who are traveling alone:

  1. Choose the right hostel. Make sure to research all facets of the hostel you're about to book.  Don't forget about distance between the hostel and the nearest tram or bus stop.
  2. Research your area, pick out a few key places to see, visit and shop
  3. Don't look American. Don't wear your favorite football jersey or your sorority sweatshirt. I'm just saying. An elderly American couple in Milan came up to me and ask if I spoke English and if I could help them, they laughed when I told them I was American myself! 
  4. Don't look lost. Before you arrive try to learn your whereabouts: your hostel, airport, train station, large tourist spots. I HIGHLY recommend the app: CityMaps2Go. It allows you to download a map of a city you can use in airplane mode. With this app, I was able to get the sweet elderly couple back on track with their visit. 
  5. Don't go out. Sorry, if you're a girl traveling alone you have to give and take on some things. Having a glass of wine in a fancy restaurant is much different than pounding beers at a bar. Some hostels organize bar crawls or if you really must have a beer- buy a 6 pack and bring it back to your hostel. You might make some new friends!
  6. Learn a few simple phrases in the local language. It shows to the natives your interested in their culture and respect their language enough to try it. I would recommend: Hello, Good Bye, Please, Thank you. Also something you may not think of is learning phrases like: "I don't know this man." "He is not my husband/boyfriend." I pray that you'll never have to use the last phrases but it's better than not knowing them. It also makes for good trivia. "No" is pretty universal also in cases of emergency.
  7. Memorize or put local emergency numbers in your phone. Again, I hope you never have to use these, but it's better to have them.
  8. Stay in well-lit and touristy areas.
  9. Try to be back in the hostel by 10 pm
  10. Pack & USE your common sense!! hmm... dark alleyway or extremely well-lit street? hmmm... get in a car with a stranger or take the subway?

Have you traveled alone? Any tips to share?


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    1. Thank you very much Sonya! I'm glad you enjoyed the article.


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