Top Questions About Solo Female Travel
Like most women, I wanted to travel with my partner but life doesn't always happen that way. I was single and had been for a long time. I wasn't going to settle for any man just to have someone to travel with. The idea of seeing the world with Mr. Right was my ideal situation but I wasn't going to let life push my dreams aside. I'm here to tell you it is possible to solo travel fearlessly.
The number one question I'm asked is...
Isn't it unsafe and dangerous?
I feel like Television, movies and media have amplified the dangers of traveling. You have to remember it's their job to sell stories. It's your job to do the research. Any place can be unsafe, it's just how you prepare yourself that makes a situation more safe.
Research where you're going and use good judgement. I personally don't stay out late, I don't drink and get too intoxicated and I try to make friends with my hostel mates and explore as a group. If you're scared maybe a suggestion would be for you to wear a fake ring on your finger to deter unwanted attention and put off the perception that your "husband" isn't far behind.
How do you afford to travel for so long?
I sell stuff I no longer need and I use the need vs want method before I decide to add something to my life. It's a methodical process for me. I really weigh out the value of any material item I'm deciding to buy. I ask myself how much value will that item add to my life and usually that deters me from over cluttering and spending and further adding to my travel fund. Click on the how to save for travel link to find out more.
I also write as I travel featuring hotels, restaurants, products, etc. and doing research to help save time for my followers. Every so often I'll get sponsored by a company that might include me advertising their products for trips I go on. The companies usually give me a discount code I can share where I get a percentage of the sales.
How do you meet people?
Often times there are regional Facebook groups are a great place to check. Another common site to check is Lonely Planet which has great information and pretty up to date. I've also found CouchSurfing to be a good way to look up who's in your area and wants to meet up. You can also download apps such as Wandermate and Tourlina. Both are geared towards connecting solo female travelers but I have not personally tried these apps so I can't give you a review yet. As I traveled solo I began to find out that travelers tend to draw themselves to one another because they're both seeking to find the next cool place to explore and someone to explore with. If you're thinking to yourself "but I'm shy and socially awkward", don't worry; there is most likely someone in the guesthouse common room that's more outgoing than you and will introduce them self first.
Aren't you scared?
I'm pretty outgoing but I'm not going to lie. The idea of not knowing anyone, not speaking the language and just totally being out of my comfort zone was scary but also the best thing I ever did for myself. It forced me to figure it out. It made me prepare myself for the unknown. You can never be too prepared. Google is your best friend and information is at your fingertips! Doing your own research about where you're about to travel is one of the best things you can do for yourself. There are cultures and customs you may not be aware of that your research can reveal which can make a country less scary.
Don't you get lonely?
I think anyone who travels for an extended period of time has moments of feeling lonely missing home, loved ones or just sleeping in their own bed. I thought that lonely feeling would be more frequent but it turns out being a solo traveler isn't as solo as you think. I'm constantly meeting new people and keeping busy which takes that lonely feeling away real quick. You also have to remember, yeah I might be alone but if I was at home I would be wishing I was exploring and traveling.