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I love travelling and it’s often very difficult to find a travel partner. My schedule is quite flexible and allows me to take off whenever I choose. For most of my friends, it’s not the same. That’s why I resort to solo travel even though I’m a female!
That is why I’ve ended up travelling alone for most of my trips. In fact, as we speak, I am travelling alone and writing this article from my hotel in Spain!
I believe I’ve travelled to at least 15-20 countries alone! I have rarely had a terrible experience (minus getting scammed and minor things like that).
In general, I love solo travel. Each of my solo travel trips provides me with new-found wisdom and memories. However, there are a few aspects that I HATE and that is why I am writing this post today.
This is probably the #1 reason I’ve stopped travelling alone. It gets really lonely sometimes!
Imagine being alone ALL THE TIME! I mean ALL THE TIME! You have no one to talk to. No one to hug or laugh with. It gets tiring sometimes!
However, if you’re someone who meets people easily, this usually isn’t an issue. I usually make friends everywhere I go, so most days, I actually enjoy travelling alone.
However, what I find most difficult about being alone ALL THE TIME is when I’m in a country where I don’t speak the language at all. I often travel to places that are a bit off the beaten track where no one speaks English. Being in situations like this is fun yet terrifying at the same time. At times like these, I wish I had someone to talk to (in English) to make the days go by faster.
However, also keep in mind there’s Google Translate these days and you can go very very far without speaking the local language at all!
2. Higher costs
The second thing that deters me from travelling alone is the higher costs. I love travelling, and I especially love low-cost, budget-friendly travel. It’s just my thing!
However, I can no longer stay in cheap hostels anymore. I always get a private room wherever I go and the costs do add up. If I had at least one other person to share it with, then I could half my costs.
Secondly, every time I need to get a cab, I also have to pay the entire fare myself. It’s much nicer if I could share the cost with someone. Transportation tends to be my highest cost after accommodations when I travel.
Lastly, eating out also gets expensive. Why? Because I love to eat and I want to try everything! I hate having to order a bunch of food and not be able to finish it. I wish I had someone to eat with so I could try more local delicacies!
3. Unnecessary attention
Now we get to the uncomfortable topic. Solo travel as a female. Being a young, smiley, and relatively attractive woman, I get a lot of unnecessary attention wherever I go. It’s really not something I am proud of.
For example, I was in Laos last year, and I was talking to a monk. We had a lovely chat and after an hour he basically hit on me and asked me over to his place. This is VERY VERY against monk rules, so I was truly confused that this even happened.
Or another example, I was travelling in Thailand and then my tour guide asked me for drinks after our tour ended. I said sure since I had no one to eat with. Then he brought me to a club and tried to kiss me and wouldn’t let me go home! It was horrible. I was disappointed because I truly trusted this man and even considered him a friend and he kind of ruined everything.
Last example. I am currently in Spain and the locals keep hollering, whistling, and saying “Guapa! Guapa!” It only happens when I’m in the non-touristy areas. They’re not dangerous though, it’s just part of their culture to tell a woman she is pretty. However, I was walking on a beach and an old viejo verde (Spanish term to mean creepy, perverted old man) kept following me!
All in all, nothing dangerous really came out of these situations. However, I just hate getting this attention because it kind of distracts me from having fun. And it makes me very weary of people and prevents me from trusting or making new friends. Which, if you think about it, kind of defeats the purpose of travelling alone!
4. Getting lost or scammed easily
Most days, my sense of direction is horrible. I literally walk in circles while staring at Google Maps and still can’t get to the right place. I blame it on Google Maps!
Yesterday, I was trying to find a tapas bar and I walked past the place literally 5 times. I was walking in circles for 30 minutes before I realized I was in the right place. Boo!
I hate travelling alone because of my lack of sense of direction.
Also, I trust people way too easily. When people see a girl who looks lost, well, some try to take advantage of the situation.
I was scammed while travelling in Thailand a few times and now I’ve learned my lesson! In the end, I paid an extra 100 euros or so out of pocket which is not a big deal. But now I learned my lesson for life (I’d hope) so I guess it was worth it!
Also, as a word of advice, it is MUCH EASIER to negotiate better prices when you are in a group!
5. No one to share memories with
Lastly, travelling alone sucks because there’s no one to share memories with. I love doing crazy, adventurous things, but I am not brave enough to do some of them alone. I also want to be able to relive my past vacations by talking about them with someone, but you can’t really talk about a trip with someone who wasn’t there with you!
What’s more, I love taking photos but I don’t like taking photos alone. And also, when I see a beautiful landscape, I try to ask someone to take a photo for me and it usually doesn’t come out right.
I love travelling alone (for the most part), but there are some things I really hate about solo travel as a female. I’ve listed them all in this article.
If you’re planning to travel alone, just make sure you enjoy spending time alone or have something to do while you’re alone (I like to read or work on my blog). And stay alert!
Do you like to travel alone? What do you like/dislike about it?
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