With the uprising of travel culture, there’s also a big push for the solo travel culture; more specifically, why every woman should solo travel at least once in her life (because you’re an independent woman who don’t need no man). Of course, I’m 100% for it: step outside your comfort zone, do what you want, and gain that confidence.
Before I moved to Spain to teach English abroad, I tried the solo travel lifestyle. I lasted about 4 days. And, you know what? That’s okay. Solo travel is not for everybody, and traveling with a buddy does not necessarily make you less independent, confident, or secure.
Your travel personality
You don’t really know somebody until you travel with them. Traveling can absolutely make or break a friendship. Some travelers are more assertive about what they want, and some go with the flow. Some like to stay out all night and sleep in late, others prefer the opposite. You and your companion’s travel personality types can really make or break not only a friendship, but also a trip.
I’m a team player. I work better with a trusted buddy by my side. I love to bounce my energy off a travel buddy, combine our knowledge of history to think about what was happening in the world when so-and-so cathedral was built, and have an extra set of eyes to see things that I may have not noticed otherwise. So, when I solo travel, I get bored. I don’t get the opportunity to make the best of another perspective or share my new experiences with a friend.
Traveling the world with your best friend: sounds like a dream, right? The inside jokes you discover on the road, the friendship that only strengthens, never being lonely – all wonderful reasons to travel with your best friend.
While, of course, it is always possible to make friends on the road when you solo travel, this can be difficult. Other travelers may be more interested in hiking huge mountains while you want to explore the local food culture. If you have the same travel interests, you might just not hit it off. On the contrary, you know your best friend. You set out on this adventure with the same goals in mind. You know when you butt heads, and you know how to solve the problem.
More experienced travelers can go pretty much anywhere in the world alone and be comfortable. However, more newbie travelers may be a little less certain of their surroundings, and opt to only go out to the club at night with a buddy in tow. When you’re in a new country and you’re not too confident about its culture, having that little bit of insurance might not be the worst idea. When you travel with a buddy, you can feel more comfortable about having a couple drinks in a new place.
If you want to solo travel to a new culture, spread your wings and shatter your comfort zone, more power to ya! However, those of you who, like me, maybe aren’t so well-suited for solo travel, don’t be overwhelmed by the internet telling you that solo travel is a must. I always say “try everything once”, but if it’s not for you, you’ve just learned something new about yourself, and that is what travel is all about!