5 Misconceptions About Solo Travelling

Solo travelling is becoming more and more of a conventional means of exploring the world. It challenges the status quo of only challenging with a friend or family alongside.

If you often read my blog and follow me on socials you know how proud I am to don the “solo traveller” cap and talk about the benefits it offers.

That being said, its often a way of travel that’s misunderstood and come with some stigma. A lot of casual people who don’t travel regularly look down upon travelling alone and are normally put off by it.

Feeling you’re one of those guys whos got the wrong end of the stick? Well here’s 5 misconceptions about solo travelling that’ll hopefully be cleared up.

Image Credit: Pexels

1. You’ll find yourself getting lonely

Biggest things people get misconstrued about solo travel. That travelling alone means travellers are lonely and isolated. Just because friends and family aren’t around them doesn’t mean they are not surrounded by company. Don’t get me wrong, group travel with friends and family allows for life-long memories.

Although travelling alone gives you the exclusive opportunity to meet new people and potentially make new friends. This is the kind of opportunity you’ll unlikely open yourself up to if you travelled with friends or family.

Ways in which you can do that is by staying in shared accommodation such as Hostels and AirBnbs. I’ve made fun memories with random people I’d just met for one night and never seen again (such is life!). As a travel blogger I can also use social media to engage with fellow travellers who live in the place I’d visit and perhaps meetup.

2. It’s only for people with no friends

Truth is everyone has different interests and daily routines, even your closest friends. Whilst I’m passionate about exercise and helping people live a healthy lifestyle – and obviously have serious wanderlust. My best friend for example loves architecture and product design but isn’t a serial traveller like myself. Another friend of mine is full-time 9-5 simpleton who comes home from work and chillaxes.

Those kind of people are not gonna be the people who’ll ride or die for you when it comes to travelling the world regularly. Can’t depend on others to hold your hand and explore the world with you the way you wanna do it. And that’s okay.

Same goes with your travel friends. Anything travel-related they’ll probably hit you up cos of mutual interest but not so much if it’s a music festival or night out they’re looking to go to for example.

3. It is unsafe

The safety of any traveller is paramount, solo or non-solo. Stories in the media of exchange students and British tourists often being found dead or going missing, female travellers getting harassed and racial prejudices towards people of color. All are fair and reasonable examples for people to use as arguments against solo travelling. A big current example is recent cases of US tourists mysteriously dying on visits to the Dominican Republic.

But again a country you’ve yet to visit in your life doesn’t automatically mean its a place of danger. Nor does having people with you guarentee you’re not going to run into trouble.

Truth is nowhere is exactly safe, even in your home city (ask London bloggers about the knife crime epidemic). That doesn’t mean incidents won’t happen if you’re travelling alone. You just have to exercise more caution when abroad. For example mainland Europe is notorious for pickpocketing so you’d need to limit the amount of stuff in back pockets.

Good amount of research, awareness of surroundings and area and taking safety precautions can minimise the risk of getting yourself into trouble.

4. You end up getting lost

Losing yourself in a city would’ve had more strength and validity 10-15 years when smart technology was more primitive.

Now the beauty of 4G (soon 5G!) allows us access to internet on the go and make use of apps like Google Maps and City Mapper. You can also download maps and use offline to conserve battery. More independent.

Or if you’re more old-school, take a hold of a map or city guide. Ask locals for directions to attractions you want to get to. That way you get an insight into how the locals interact and treat tourists visiting visiting their space.

For a lot of travellers more often than not the best things they discover is when they actually get lost wandering around. You find things you wouldn’t have otherwise seen or experienced if they had a strict itinerary.

Image Credit: Pexels

Image Credit: Pexels

5. You get bored of travelling alone (eventually)

There’s the idea that travelling alone is boring and dull. If not then it’ll eventually lose its appeal and become a mundane activity. To me that’s a close-minded mentality to have towards travelling in general!

Travelling teaches you so much about yourself and the world around you. The opportunity for personal growth is enough of a reason to always be excited about going away somewhere.

Bit of perspective, there are a total of 195 countries on the planet according to WorldAtlas.com. A lot of those countries we probably haven’t heard of. That’s one thing I love about travelling. The element of mystery and discovery. Furthermore if you’re an geologists or explorer then there are countries out there waiting and hiding, waiting to be found by an explorer.

You can take on solo travel and travelling in general in many ways. Day trips, weekend breaks, backpacking, cruises…the list is almost exhausting.

People travel to one country multiple times for different reasons and motivations. That makes a travel experience unique and just as special as the other if all goes well.

Image Credit: Pexels
Image Credit: Pexels

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Summary

Travelling independently is not dangerous if you do thorough research and have prepared yourself in case things go left. Nor does it mean travellers are lonely and are not finding opportunities to socialise and expand their network. You can always learn how to travel alone effectively. I personally recommend everyone should do at least once in their lifetime.

What common stereotypes do you know about solo travel that I haven’t mentioned? Have you done it before?Drop your thoughts in the comments below.

Give the post a like or share! Can’t wait to hit you lot up with more of my travel wisdom soon 👊🏾

Johnny | Johnny’s Traventures

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Johnny

Johnny is a 22-year old solo traveller and travel blogger with a craving to know the world better and make the small world bigger!

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18 Comments

  1. July 11, 2019 / 7:41 am

    Another great post Johnny!
    I did a solo trip for the first time this year and can’t wait to do another. I’m going to pass this post along to anyone who questions it next time. Trying to explain that it’s not dangerous and that you’re not lonely all the time is exhausting.

    Elle x
    http://www.ellemacuk.com

    • Johnny
      Author
      July 12, 2019 / 11:05 pm

      Thanks Elle and yeah you filled me on your first solo adventure remember? 😉 But yeah anyway send the naysayers my way don’t worry loool

  2. July 11, 2019 / 9:19 am

    What a great post. I honestly can’t believe that people have such a negative view. I can’t imagine anything more wonderful than exploring the world alone, being able to see and do whatever the hell you want, on your own schedule and meet some amazing people doing the same thing.

    Enjoy all your solo travels, although other than the journey, i bet you hardly spend anytime solo!

    • Johnny
      Author
      July 12, 2019 / 11:08 pm

      Thank you Claire 🙂 And for sure I always seek company but if I really need to do something I won’t hesitate waiting on anyone trust me. I can understand why they see solo travelling negatively but the only way you truly know is by taking the plunge and going on a solo trip, which is a problem cos people have these innate fears in them.

  3. July 11, 2019 / 10:41 am

    Great post!

    This just reminds me not to listen to others and that I can explore the world alone.
    I remember when I went to Paris last year and a friend had the most patronizing response when I told her that I travelled solo.
    Some people just can’t do anything unless there’s someone by their side and these are the people I feel sorry for if I’m honest.
    I hope you enjoy all of your solo travels in 2019!

    Kelle – http://www.itskellesspace.com

    • Johnny
      Author
      July 12, 2019 / 11:18 pm

      Thanks Sis! Hope you enjoy whatever travels you have planned.

      As much as she’s your friend I think that’s her loss. She’s missing out on a special experience. Travelling alone teaches you so much about yourself and your capabilities but sadly there are people who seemingly prefer to hide behind friends and family travel-wise. Understandably so, and that’s their choice.

  4. July 11, 2019 / 4:34 pm

    Solo travel can be so rewarding, especially when you’re younger as you learn so much about yourself as you do. I’d do it again if I wasn’t old and married – haha!

    • Johnny
      Author
      July 12, 2019 / 11:10 pm

      Hahahaha well at least you’ve been there and done. Everyone’s time comes and goes I guess – maybe your time will come again 😉

  5. July 11, 2019 / 8:37 pm

    Great post – although I actually have got lost a couple of times😆

    • Johnny
      Author
      July 12, 2019 / 11:11 pm

      Hahaha oh really? Bet it made the trips more eventful and dramatic – with stories you can come back and tell 😂

  6. July 12, 2019 / 2:26 pm

    Solo travel just is not on the cards for me right now for a number of reasons but it’s one of my lifetime goals. I deeply admire anyone who travels solo – I think it’s be a truly incredible experience. Fingers crossed I get to do it one day!

  7. July 13, 2019 / 2:50 pm

    I would love to meet with a blogger on my travels – that would be so great. If it came down to it, I think I would rather have no real friends and see the world than have a bunch of people in my life who made me feel bad about travelling. Some people constantly try to put you down especially when it can involve saying no to certain things to add more money to your travel fund! Then there’s other people who just completely get it and spend their free time on skyscanner for no real reason!

  8. July 13, 2019 / 3:19 pm

    That picture of you in the JETSKI IS WAVEY!!

    Solo travel isn’t that bad. Being lonely isn’t a valid explanation because when I travel solo, I enjoy walking by myself, meeting new people or having brief conversations.

    “It’s only for people who have no friends” – for me its 50/50… my friends enjoy the idea of travelling but when it comes to it, they all back down, that’s one of the reasons why I started travelling solo.

    Regardless, its the best thing that’s ever happened to me and you learn so much about yourself.

    • Johnny
      Author
      July 14, 2019 / 10:55 pm

      No worries Margarida 🙂 And definitely can’t argue with what you’ve said! Solo travel is life

  9. July 14, 2019 / 5:48 pm

    I love this post! I’ve always wished I was confident enough to solo-travel, although I definitely don’t look down on it (in fact I have a lot of respect for people who do), I have anxiety and don’t think I’d ever feel up for travelling alone! It sounds like it suits you well though!
    Soph – https://sophhearts.com x

  10. July 15, 2019 / 2:06 pm

    I haven’t traveled alone yet I just read another blog of a young lady traveling to Belize by herself. I need to find the courage and do it. She had an amazing time and it sound like you do too. You don’t have to debate with people on what you want do or get bummed out when they don’t want to do anything plus yes you get the chance to enjoy yourself. I’ll start in the states first but it’s kind of hard now bcuz I have a family and I want them to enjoy everything too. Anywho I commend you Have a great week!

  11. July 18, 2019 / 12:19 am

    I have been solo travelling for 7 months in SEAsia, often when I check into a place they look behind me and ask are you alone! Probably assume I am Nellynofriends, it’s quite the opposite I am rich in memories and experiences because I travel alone.Have met some awesome people Great post.

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