I’ve been very fortunate the last few years because I’ve gotten to travel a lot. One of my best friends works for an airline so I have gotten a fair share of free flights (on standby but still free) to amazing cities, I otherwise probably couldn’t afford. For most of the trips I’d traveled with my friend Mark, even if we took separate flights we would explore and stay together. That all changed when I decided to go to the Blogher15 conference.
I started doing research to see it was remotely possible that I could go. After lots of hotel searching (and talking myself in and out of it) I decided to go. So not only was I going to take my first totally solo trip but I was taking it in New York City. I guess go big or stay home.
I had an amazing experience! I’d actually wouldn’t feel clique saying it was life changing. Traveling alone is something everyone should do at least once.
5 Reasons You Should Travel Alone
You get a hotel room to yourself
Even if you don’t go anywhere extra special there is nothing like a hotel room to yourself. Crisp white sheets, extra cool air, tiny bottles of lotion and shampoo, even that generic hotel channel that plays on repeat until you figure out the remote seems more delightful when alone.
I’ve lived alone for nearly 4 years and I have to tell you having a hotel room to myself is way better…. probably because I don’t have to clean up or make the bed.
You can have the kind of trip you want
When you travel with other people you typically have to accommodate their desires as well as your own. You may want to go see the Statue of Liberty while they want to check out Central Park but only have time for one of the two. When you travel alone you can see the sights you want to see, check out the places you want to, eat at the food you want to eat. You set your itinerary or just go with your own flow and that is a truly freeing feeling.
You’re more likely to meet new people
When you travel with other people you tend to stay with those other people. When you travel alone you’re forced to make friends or be alone. I met some pretty cool people on my trip. I may have shared a few words with these people and went on my about my day if I had a travel companion but since I was alone these passing moments turned into new friendships. Bonus you may have found a lifelong friend or a free place to stay the next time you’re in town.
You meet a new side of yourself
I think that traveling alone is very liberating but it can be a scary experience. Being in a new place alone is the epitome of stepping out of your comfort zone. It forces you to see a new side of yourself, forces you to try new things, to do something out of your ordinary element and get to know yourself a little better. It’s different than the typical vacation you. You get to see how you respond to the environment without the outside opinions of people you know. Stepping out of your comfort zone lets you recognize what sort of things make you uncomfortable versus what things are just foreign to you. It makes you more in tune with your natural reactions and instincts. You find out what types of things draw you when you don’t have any of your normal outside influences to push you in one direction or the other. When traveling alone you don’t get to be passive because all the choices are up to you. You are forced to really think about what you.
You develop a desire to do it more
After my experience traveling alone I have to tell you I definitely want to do it again. Would I love to go to New York with a friend or a romantic partner? Definitely! But I also want to travel and see other places by myself. I want to get to know myself better. I want to revisit places I’ve seen with friends on my own.
I’m sure the experience in this is going to be different for everyone. I’ve always been very independent person. I have no issue going to a restaurant, bar or movie by myself. If that’s not you, I still say give traveling alone a chance. Maybe don’t go to New York City for 5 days by yourself but perhaps just plan a day/night away in another town. Just go somewhere and ask yourself what do I want to do here? If you’re a writer or blogger then it is a great way to get a new material, clear head and escape distractions. It’s easy to get stuck in the mundane but seeing how you fit into different environments without anyone influencing your time and decisions is really eye-opening.
Read more about my trip here.
Have you ever taken a trip alone? How did it go? What did you learn? Are for scared to? Tell me why below.
Do it for love,