10 Life-Changing Benefits of Travelling Alone


When I tell people that I always travel alone, I’m usually met with one of two reactions: people think I’m crazy, or they feel sorry for me.

I can understand both reactions.

Before I travelled, I had no idea of all the wonderful benefits of travelling alone.

I was terrified, and the only reason I even booked that first plane ticket was because none of my friends wanted to travel, and I wasn’t going to sit and wait until I found a boyfriend to travel with!

Now, while I’ll be the first to admit that solo travel is not easy, I firmly believe that the benefits of travelling alone vastly outweigh the negatives.

With this in mind, I decided to create this post about the many fantastic things that solo travel brings.

So, if you’re desperate to get out and see the world but don’t have anyone to go with, fear not, because by the end of this article, you won’t be able to start your adventures quickly enough!

Are you ready?

Then let’s get into it.


10 Benefits of Travelling Alone


1. You will make more friends


It may seem odd that I am talking about meeting people in an article about the benefits of travelling alone, but hear me out for a minute.

When you’re travelling with friends or a partner, it can be tempting to choose more private accommodation, go everywhere together and not make as much effort with your fellow travellers.

One of the benefits of travelling alone is that making new friends will become second nature to you.

Every new hostel or group tour is an opportunity to make connections with fun and interesting people, and not only will you be more approachable if you are on your own, but you will also naturally put yourself out there and talk to more people.

Some of my best friendships ever came about as a direct result of being a solo traveller.

If you’re feeling unsure, my article about how to make friends while travelling might help.

benefits of travelling alone
Nothing beats a good hostel – Pai, Thailand, 2015


2. The world won’t seem as scary


From the comfort of our living rooms, the world can often seem like a big and scary place, but one of the advantages of travelling alone is that you soon realise that it isn’t half as bad and you think!

Even as a solo female traveller, the world really isn’t as dangerous as we’re led to believe, and I am always shocked and humbled at the kindness and generosity of strangers.

When you travel with other people, it can be too easy to depend on them for the things, but one of the biggest benefits of travelling alone is that you’re forced to conquer your fears and do things on your own, whether that be plucking up the courage to ask a stranger for directions, or going to a restaurant alone.

The best bit?

You soon learn that there was nothing to be afraid of in the first place!


pocitelj
Bosnia & Herzegovina? Scary? Nah mate.
2017


3. You can travel the way YOU want to travel

Perhaps one of the biggest benefits of travelling alone is that you can travel exactly the way you want to. 

You can wake up as early (or late!) as you want, you get to choose exactly how long you stay in each place, which accommodation you opt for, and whether you want to skip the 4am volcano hike in favour of a full-body massage!

You can also rest without feeling guilty (and if that means spending an entire day in bed watching Netflix, so be it!).

While it’s certainly important to try new things when you travel, you should be trying them for YOU and nobody else.

Being able to enjoy ultimate travel freedom without having to compromise is hands down one of the greatest benefits of solo travel!

cefalu beach
Beach days galore in Sicily, Italy
2020


4. Travelling alone increases your confidence


One of the biggest changes I noticed in myself after travelling alone was that my confidence increased exponentially.

Talking to strangers, making my own decisions, and figuring things out for myself became second nature to me after I’d been travelling solo for a while.

Before I travelled, this was never the case.

If I’d agreed to meet someone at a bar, I’d wait outside, sometimes in the freezing cold, until they arrived.

Now I’ll walk right up to the bar, order myself a drink and make conversation with the bartender while I wait, and that’s all thanks to my years spent travelling solo.

greg and Tom Party Hostel
Never thought I’d be running a pub crawl! – Poland, 2018


5. You learn about yourself

I don’t want to say that travelling alone makes you ‘find yourself’ because that implies that you have to be lost to begin with, and also, it’s so cliché. 

However, for many people, travelling alone helps them to enjoy their own company and figure out what it is they actually enjoy doing.

Perhaps you discover that you’re a thrill seeker who loves canyoning and jumping out of planes.

Perhaps you figure out that you prefer a slower pace of life, or that you have a passion for saving turtles, or that you’re actually a pretty good English teacher!

Whatever it is, you’ll definitely learn something about yourself when you travel, and travelling solo makes that process ten times faster.

benefits of travelling alone
I don’t take a good picture – something I learnt long before I travelled – Bali, 2015


6. You will become a better decision maker


A life of travelling solo is a life full of decision making.

Where to go next, how to get there, how long to stay there for, whether to stay in a hotel or a hostel, how much money to take with you…you name it, you decide it.

Whatever the situation, it is down to you to make every decision along the way.

By having to constantly rely on yourself, you end up becoming a much more responsible person than the one you were when you embarked on your trip, which is one of the biggest advantages of travelling alone.

budapest thermal baths
Thermal baths are always a good decision – Hungary, 2017


7. You have complete financial control


Whenever you travel in a group, there are always going to be clashes over how much you spend at some point.

Even travellers on similar budgets are never a complete match when it comes to spending, with one person always wanting to splurge that bit more than the other.

Whether your travel style involves eating out at restaurants for every meal or living off 7-11 toasties, you always get the final say in how much you spend when you travel alone, which is one of the most welcome joys of travelling alone.

zapiekanka
The perfect breakfast on a budget – Poland, 2022


8. You will become more assertive


Being assertive is never a bad thing in life, and when you travel solo, you have no choice but to be assertive in some situations.

This could mean a firm ‘no!’ to a pushy vendor in Marrakech, taking a strong stance on how much you’re willing to pay a tuk-tuk driver in Bangkok, or telling the weird guy on the pub crawl to stop following you around.

Either way, when you travel alone, you’re going to have to be firm from time to time, and the only thing that will help you get better at this is by practice.

It can be too easy to rely on your partner or friends to be the dominant one when you’re out and about, but when they’re not there, you have to put on your big girl boots and take charge.

benefits of travelling alone
Don’t let yourself be walked all over – Montenegro, 2018.


9. You can be more flexible and spontaneous


One of the greatest benefits of travelling alone is the fact that you can be as spontaneous as you like and you don’t have to consult a soul!

Over the years, I have said ‘yes’ to so many spontaneous trips (often resulting in me changing my course of travel completely) that just wouldn’t have been possible if I were travelling with a group of people.

Sometimes I’ve changed direction in order to spend more time with a holiday romance, or skipped countries entirely because a hostel job popped up that I just couldn’t turn down.

I’ve even embarked on a random road trip across Kosovo with 2 guys I met in a restaurant!

2 girls holding guns in a bar
Playing with guns in Ukraine, 2018


10. Learn a language quicker


Lastly, and perhaps one of the most important benefits of solo travel is that your language skills will improve.

When you travel solo, you’ll pick up the local language quicker because you’ll be more likely to try out new words and phrases without having to feel embarrassed in front of your friends.

It’s surprising how much you can learn when you totally immerse yourself in something, and getting out of your comfort zone and away from the security blanket of your friends will force you to do just that!


Benefits of Travelling Alone | Final Thoughts


So, there concludes my list of 10 incredible benefits of travelling alone!

There are many dos and don’ts of solo travel, but I wholeheartedly believe that travelling solo is one of the best things you can do for yourself, and I hope that I’ve done a good job in illustrating that for you in this article!

Got anyy questions?

Leave them for me in the comments section below!

Until next time,

XOXO


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