The Pros and Cons of Traveling Alone
There are many pros and cons of traveling alone. Ask several people what their interests are, and a large percentage will put traveling at the top of the list. Many people only consider traveling with someone else, and wouldn’t dream of traveling alone.
But for others, traveling alone is a source of pride and great joy. Many call it Solo Travel and live for it. Here are some of the pros and cons of traveling alone.
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Pro – Getting to Choose All Details of the Trip when Traveling Alone
Nothing beats the feeling of being able to perfectly construct the vacation of your dreams. When you are traveling alone, you can do everything you want, and avoid everything you dislike. This is especially helpful when you have a limited amount of time and money.
Vacationing with a friend can mean a lot of compromising, and spending time and money on things you have no interest in. Travel alone for the ultimate, self-focused time of exploration and adventure.
Con – Safety Risks of Traveling Alone
One of the first things a person often thinks of when the subject of traveling alone comes up, is the issue of safety. Traveling in pairs means you have someone to help you out of a sticky situation, someone to witness any wrong doings by others, and protection from any seedy individuals who prey on single travelers.
This is something that most solo travelers have weighed carefully. It’s basically one of the main cons of solo travel, but not one that should stop you from giving a solo trip a try.
Pro – Being Forced to Meet New People on Your Trip
Traveling with a friend means you always have someone to talk to. Traveling alone means you are forced to make friends if you want conversation. Sometimes traveling alone can be the ideal situation to force you out of your comfort zone and bring some spice to your life.
I know for me, eating alone is something I just don’t like to do. In some countries it’s just a custom to introduce yourself to a solo eater and sit with them. I have often wanted to do that, but just haven’t yet.
Con – Not Having Someone to Bounce Ideas Off Of
Traveling requires a lot of planning and thought. Traveling alone means that you are the only one who has enough invested in the trip to want to spend a significant amount of time planning.
When you are in the middle of your trip, having a travel buddy means that you can discuss any big decisions before taking any action. If you are the type of person who likes to make all the decisions, then this isn’t a con for you.
Related: Why You Should Vacation Solo
Pro – Having a Complete Break from Everyday Life
Traveling alone means you will have a chance to completely rest from the daily drama that everyday life can bring. When you take a friend along, it is impossible to entirely leave this behind.
If your friend is bringing up a topic you wanted to avoid, or insisting on giving constant updates regarding everyone’s social media posts, their companionship can become old very fast.
Many times I myself have to travel to a Dr that I see, and it’s a 3 hour drive one way. Strange, but I like to do it alone as that is my solo travel sometimes and I love to have my own thoughts and nobody to entertain.
Con – No Cost Sharing
When it comes to hotel rooms and the like, traveling in groups can lessen the cost. When you travel alone, certain situations mean that you will be paying almost double what you would if you took a travel companion along.
Take this extra financial cost into consideration when you are deciding whether to travel alone or with others. However, you can find great hotel deals by using sites like Booking.com when traveling.
Throwing in a Pro here, use credit card perks. I have a Marriott card and an IHG card that I use year round for all my spending and build great perks, like free nights. That helps with hotel costs for sure.
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Related: Save on Travel
Pro – Learning More about Yourself Traveling Alone
When we are around those we are comfortable with, we often fall into our usual way of relating. Traveling alone forces you to learn about yourself. Instead of asking your friend what they want to do next, you will be forced to think about what you truly want to do.
You will find out what you want to try, and what you love enough to do twice.
Traveling alone has many benefits, but also some disadvantages. Weigh the pros and cons as you make this decision. Whether you travel alone or in a group, you will know what to expect.