The more I travel, the more I encounter solo travelers out for their vacation alone. I frequently see single people, married people with different interests, divorcees, widowers and widows, groups of friends, avid divers, cyclists, fishermen, nature lovers and more. To hear others say “I can’t travel because I don’t want to go alone” is somewhat heartbreaking, knowing that hundreds more are out there, vacationing alone and having the time of their lives. The art of vacationing alone is not really a mystery, but if you’ve lost confidence or comfort of others in your life, it may be time to get out of your shell and take that vacation that is long overdue.
If you have never gone on a vacation alone, perhaps it is worth a try!
Below are some things you might want to know about traveling alone…
- Double Occupancy.
This is the number one culprit of solo travelers, so let’s get it out of the way. It seems that every hotel deal out there is based on “double occupancy”. But, the truth is that NOT EVERY hotel is priced that way. Instead of shopping for a hotel room, try a single room condo, a cabana or even, an entire house. Sometimes the best deals can be found by single travelers, and you have room to roam in paradise, for less money. And the experiences can outweigh the typical hotel experience, because most small resorts cater to a smaller group and can serve you better.
Traveling and vacationing alone offers more freedom than you can possibly imagine. You literally are on your own time schedule once you de-board the plane. Feel like sleeping in? Done. Feel like getting up early to run? Go for it. Nap time after breakfast? Who cares! Really, you can go do what you want, when you want and have absolutely no one to report to about any of it. This is what vacationing is all about!
- Last Minute Deals
So many places – ski resorts, dive boats, beach vacations, whale tours, etc. nearly always have room for one. Stand on deck and wave at that family of five, as they miss the whale watching tour because there was only room for one more, and you got that spot! Keep your eyes peeled for deals and other fun adventures available to you as a single. Get on the chair lift faster in the singles line. Get seated at the restaurant faster because 1 is easier to seat than 5. Enjoy the deals available to you as a solo vacationer. They are out there and they’re not for pity, they’re there for you to enjoy.
- Interesting People to Meet
Vacationing alone allows you to meet all kinds of people. Some will chat with you, some will delve into their personal histories for hours, some will be happy to have someone to hang out with while their spouse/friend/family is off doing other things. A lot of times, you won’t be alone on your vacation if you don’t want to be. It’s surprising how many people are not “vacationing alone”, but end up alone on their vacation. Sometimes these are the best people with which to grab a drink, a quick lunch, an excursion, tour or day. And don’t expect the person to the heartthrob of your dreams, sometimes the people you meet will enrich your lives in ways far exceeding a quick romance.
- Be Flexible
Traveling and vacationing alone allows you freedom, but if you try to hang out with others on your trip, be flexible and open to new adventures. Understand that most people you meet out vacationing are on vacation as well. Their schedules and clock may be on island time as well. If someone says to meet at a certain time and they don’t make it right on time, grab a drink at the bar, or be on your way if you like. Or, if you like to do somethings with some people or really just want your own time alone, take it. It’s your vacation, be flexible and you’ll be surprised how much smoother it will go.
- Enjoy It
Instead of focusing on what it would be like if (I wasn’t alone, I had more money, I had a boyfriend/girlfriend/spouse/friend/better job). It doesn’t matter. You’re on vacation and you have the opportunity to enjoy what’s right in front of you. Like ordering food and watching someone else’s tray go by, wishing you had ordered whatever they had, enjoy what you ordered. Maybe they’re wishing they had ordered what you had! Take a picture of where you go, what you eat, things you see. Look for things to take pictures of so you can enjoy them later. Don’t forget to take a picture of yourself on vacation. You deserve to have a little fun!
- Cherish Your Alone Time
Read a book, soak in some sun, sit on the dock, read a book, do something crazy. There is a time for everyone in life to be together, alone, and of course, on vacation. Enjoy the alone time and use it wisely! Not everyone has the luxury or freedom that you possess, so go show the rest of the world how to use it properly.
Vacation doesn’t have to be a drag if you end up going on your own. And vacationing alone doesn’t necessarily mean you are “alone”, unless you want to be. Alone time is great for refocusing, re-centering, and rejuvenating. Take the time to enjoy this time in your life and the vacation you’ve been putting off for way too long. Life is here for you to live and enjoy, so go!