Imagine a trip where you get to do ev-er-y-thing you want – and make zero compromises. It’s easier than you think! Just chart your adventure with the ultimate travel buddy: you! to give yourself a proper sendoff, use these social, safety and sustenance tips to plan a solo trip you’ll remember forever.
1. pack a convenience Kit
start your adventure abroad by stocking up on the comforts of home. packable must-haves like secret freshies on the go or Old spice deodorant, sunscreen, travel-size pantene shampoo and conditioner, pepto-Bismol to-go, hand sanitizer and a Venus snap or gillette razor make for a great starter kit.
2. stack Your travel playlist
Make a playlist (and download it before you leave) to give your solo vacation a soundtrack. Have it handy on the plane to drown out crying babies and chatty passengers. You can even make a collaborative playlist with your friends using a streaming service. It’s like taking them with you!
3. pick up a few Words in the Local Language
If you’re traveling abroad, learn some useful words like “yes” and “no,” some phrases for exchanging money and ordering food, and a few friendly greetings. It can help you glide through new areas, plus it shows respect for the culture you’re visiting, and you may even pick up a few new friends.
4. Build a squad abroad
stay in a hostel and hang out in the common space for instant access to social (and often solo!) travelers. striking up a conversation is easier than you think: Offer to take a photo for them, ask them for sight-seeing or dining recommendations and then invite them along on your next stop. signing up for a tour also guarantees you’ll meet some like-minded folks.
5. ask a stranger to take Your photo
Your selfie game might be strong, but nothing takes the place of a well-framed photo in a choice location, taken by someone who knows how to use a camera (or smartphone). to help you craft a humble-brag for your friends back home, ask a high school or college-aged student to snap your photo. there’s a good chance they know exactly what they’re doing.
6. get an Early start
If hitting the club by yourself doesn’t sound fun, consider starting your days early and using the evenings to unwind. great morning activities include hitting museums and local hot spots before they get too crowded. at the end of a long day, remember to give yourself permission to chill – it’s a vacation, after all.
7. Eat Like a Local
You may be tempted to stick to what’s comfortable when dining solo, but we promise you won’t regret sampling local favorites. (plus, that pepto-Bismol to-go in your convenience kit can come in handy if you get a little too adventurous.) If eating alone isn’t your jam, pack a book, scroll your phone, dabble on your laptop or document your adventures in a notebook – no judgment here.
8. spend a Night in the city
If you’ve made new friends, make plans to get fancy and hit the town together. We suggest asking a local for their top dinner, dancing and live music recommendations. If your best clothes are stuffed in the bottom of your backpack, use downy Wrinkle Releaser to bring your hottest look back to life.
9. stay connected to your Homies
stay at a hostel with free Wi-fi so you can keep in touch with your loved ones – and show your friends back home what they’re missing.
10. When in doubt, do the safe thing
share an itinerary of your trip with your squad back home. You can still be spontaneous, but giving them an idea of where you are and when could be critical in an emergency.
are you a regular Marco polo with a tip to add to our list? tell us in the comments!