Travel is one of the great personal experiences, different for everyone but just as potentially gratifying. Some travelers would be content spending their entire vacation on a beach. Others would rather explore every inch of a foreign city. Then there are those with a specific goal—say, seeing every live civil war reenactment from Pennsylvania to Texas.
Whatever your ideal vacation entails, everyone should consider traveling alone at least once. Breaking out of your comfort zone, meeting new people and having the power to make all the decisions are just a few of the benefits.
Here’s why you should travel alone:
#1 Solo travelers are more approachable. A common goal of travel is meeting people from around the world and, as we all know, it’s much easier to start a conversation with one person than it is trying to break into a group of people that already know one another. Without the group you’ll be more likely to meet new people and make deeper connections.
#2 You’ll be open to meeting new people and trying new things. Just as it’s easier for people to approach you, you’ll likely be more excited and open to making new friends when you’re traveling by yourself. As far as trying those crazy new things, you can enjoy the experiences without worrying about friends from home judging you.
#3 You get to make all the decisions. Your friend doesn’t feel like going to Greece? Your sister doesn’t like the same food as you? Your girlfriend would rather stay in for the night? None of those are problems for the solo traveler. In fact, traveling alone means you get to make all the choices—even the music selections.
#4 You’ll have more time to enjoy the fun parts of traveling. Anyone who’s ever spent two hours discussing where to go for dinner knows that being alone can really speed up the decision making process.
#5 Solo travel forces you out of your comfort zone. And life begins at the edge of your comfort zone, right?
#6 Traveling by yourself is empowering. Doing and enjoying something that most other people are too afraid to try will give you a sense of accomplishment. Knowing you can take care of yourself and enjoy exploring is one of life’s greatest rewards.
#7 Traveling solo can teach you how to enjoy being alone. People often travel to soul search, but even on a less dramatic scale, traveling alone can help you learn to love your own company.