If you’ve never travelled solo, you’d probably expect it to be quite lonely. While solo travel may not be for everyone, it’s definitely an experience I think everyone should have at some point. It teaches you so much about yourself and forces you to be comfortable with being a little uncomfortable sometimes. So the real question is: is solo travel lonely? I don’t think it is and here are four reasons why!
1. You’ll constantly meet new people
Despite the little voice in your head telling you that you won’t meet people when you’re travelling alone, you always will. You could be the most introverted person and still end up making friends while travelling solo. It’s actually much easier to meet new people when you’re travelling by yourself because you’re more approachable.
You never know where you’re going to meet someone. It could be on a train, plane, bus, hike, party, your hostel – the list goes on and on. Sure you may miss friends and family from home but because you’re constantly surrounded by new friends and people, you won’t find yourself thinking about that too much.
Discover some of the friendliest nations you’ll meet travelling here!
2. You’ll make unique connections
Solo travel is never lonely when the people you meet are nothing like people you’d stumble upon at home. You may meet a few people from your home city or country, but you’ll meet so many others from all across the world.
This means you’ll be making meaningful connections with people from all walks of life! You’ll be able to ask questions and learn so much from each and every individual you come across. This can be one of the most valuable things about travel because there’s so much to learn about others. Most solo travellers, as well as locals are open and willing to engage in these types of conversations. You’ll meet people who speak more languages than you thought possible, people who have moved to a different country for the sake of their family, those who have no plan for their travels and so on.
I also find that because so many people I meet during my travels are very unique, I end up making a deeper connection with them than with most. I think this is because solo backpackers are all in the same mentality. Most are looking to experience an extraordinary life – rather than an ordinary one. They’re not looking to settle down at home and aren’t content with a mundane everyday life.
If that makes solo travel lonely, sign me up!
3. You’ll be on a never ending adventure
Okay, so the adventure may come to an end at some point in time but while you’re in the midst of solo travel, nothing is truly boring. You’ll probably be in awe of what you’re seeing and doing on a daily basis, no matter how much you’ve travelled before.
How could you be lonely when you’re experiencing all of these things? And if you are a little lonely, you probably won’t have much time to think about it! Every time I travel solo I worry in the beginning when I haven’t met people yet but I distract myself by doing what I came to do – travel. I go out and take part in the activities I wanted to do all along, no matter if I’m alone or not.
I always wanted to skydive and bungy jump and when it came time for me to do those things, I didn’t have anyone to do it with me. As awesome as it is to share experiences with others, I wouldn’t change those solo experiences. They challenged me to go after what I wanted no matter the circumstances or fear and I couldn’t be happier that I did it by myself!
4. You’ll learn to appreciate ‘me time’
If you’re someone who values your alone time, you’d probably really enjoy solo travel. With that being said, while you can have a lot of time to yourself in the beginning, you may struggle to find time to yourself when you start meeting people. As an extrovert, I find it hard sometimes to say no to plans people make because I don’t want to miss out on anything. That means I appreciate the time I have alone a lot more than I typically would at home or if I were to be travelling with friends.
If you’re on the other end of the spectrum and find it difficult to spend a lot of time alone, don’t stress! You’ll have no problem meeting people right off the bat and making new friends.
If you’ve never travelled alone before and the fear of loneliness is standing in your way, don’t let it! Whenever someone asks me “is solo travel lonely”, I can’t help but laugh a little inside. Sure there may be times when you feel a little lonely, but that can happen at home as well. Embrace the adventure and don’t be afraid to go after what you want!
Until next time!