Traveling solo? Keep these tips in mind

You’ve booked your plane ticket for your first solo traveling experience. The thought of being all alone in a foreign country can be both exciting and daunting. Make sure you’re prepared before you embark on your adventure of a lifetime.

Travel items sitting on top of a map

Lodging
The beauty of traveling solo is the freedom to be spontaneous. But you'll want to make sure you have a place to rest your head, at least for the first night. Book a hotel or hostel for the first night or two so that you'll have time to get adjusted to your new location. When you get off the plane, you'll probably be tired from all the traveling. It's also a good idea to make sure you stay at a place that has a 24-hour front desk. You never really know what can happen when you're traveling long distances, and you don't want to get to your hotel late only to find that you can't even check-in.

Culture
When you go on vacation by yourself, you don't have to worry about compromising with your travel companions. Immerse yourself in the culture. Eat the traditional food, go to festivals, and skip the tourist traps. Take advantage of the fact that you're not with that one person who only likes to eat chicken tenders and fries.

Language
While you're enjoying the local fare, make an effort to learn some of the language, as well. In fact, if you're traveling to a country that speaks a completely different language, you might want to start practicing before you leave. The locals will respect you more if they can see that you are at least making an effort to make communication easier.

Making friends
Traveling alone opens up opportunities to be more outgoing than you normally are at home. Don't be afraid to make friends while you're traveling. Sit at the counter at restaurants. Ask people open-ended questions to initiate a conversation.

Safety
You'll need to find the right balance between being outgoing and being safe. Unfortunately, some people see tourists and see an opportunity to take advantage. Every time you leave your hotel room, make sure you only bring enough money that you think you think you'll need. Before you leave any location, do a check for your important items like your phone, wallet, and camera. Don't be afraid to interact with strangers, but always trust your gut. If you're feeling uneasy, don't question it. Find an excuse to get out of the situation and move on to a different adventure. It's also a good idea to not tell people you're traveling alone, at least not right away.

For many people, traveling alone can be a life-changing experience. As much fun as it is to be impulsive, you don't want to jump into this blind. Make sure you're prepared before you go. And most importantly, be safe and be aware of your surroundings. Need a little extra help figuring out the details of your vacation? Central Travel would love to make things a little easier for you!

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