Everyone should travel by themselves at some point in their life. Traveling by yourself can teach you so much about yourself and what you can achieve. It allows you to pick and choose what you do on your adventures, dictate the theme of your trip, and more.
However, traveling solo for an extended period of time can also have a major downside. Loneliness. No matter how many positives traveling solo has, there is still an elephant in the room you will have to deal with from time to time. Every solo traveler deals with loneliness every once in a while, even when staying in hostels where there are plenty of people around. But you can counteract it by doing a few simple things.
Put Yourself Out There
If you’re feeling the lonely bug, put yourself out there and meet people. It takes some courage to introduce yourself to a group and it may seem awkward at first, but it will help in the end. Stepping outside of your comfort zone and meeting new people can help break that loneliness not only now, but in the future as well. You never know, some of these friends you meet may be people you travel with later or become long lasting friends.
Another option is using an app to meet people. The apps Bumble and Couchsurfing are great ways to meet others for a short time while in a new city. Bumble has a friend version where you can meet fellow solo travelers who are near you. The same goes for Couchsurfing.
Keep Yourself Busy
As we all know, loneliness sinks in when we are left to our own devices. One of the best ways to break that is to keep yourself busy while traveling. Obviously, you need to balance the on-the-go times with rest periods but keeping your mind at work helps. This can be accomplished by doing day trips from the city you are staying in, a small guided group tour of a historic location, or joining in organized parties.
The world is wide and there are plenty of things out there to keep yourself busy. You’ll be surprised that a week or even a month has gone by and you don’t even realize it. Planning one major event or excursion a day helps keep you going and active instead of just sitting in your hotel room.
Comfort Can Recharge You
Another great option to counter that isolation feeling is to do or eat something that reminds you of home. Feeling homesick is a normal feeling for travelers. It’s not always easy being away from home and being in a completely different environment. But finding those little pieces of home can refuel you to keep going forward.
You can do this by either doing something you would have done at home or even having a type of food you normally would eat. It’s alright if you need a McDonald’s to keep you going on your trip. There is no shame in having a little bit of home with you. These little things can make the world of difference and recharge you for the rest of your trip.
Develop A Routine
If you are going to be staying in a place for a large length of time, developing a routine can help keep that loneliness at bay. Your routine can include visiting new sites or incorporating day trips every day. You can visit the same coffee shop to start off each day or stop by the same market to grab lunch. A routine can help pass time and keep your mind and interest engaged. It’s also a great way to immerse yourself in where you are staying.
Guest Author: Chris Slack
Chris is a travel and lifestyle blogger who left the legal field and office world in 2017 to experience the world around her. Chris has traveled to 25 different countries and is looking to travel to more in the future. Chris’s blog, Wandering Feathers, focuses not only on her travels and experiences but also how these travels have affected her day-to-day life and future. Check out her blog: http://wanderingfeathers.com/