March 01, 2017 5 min read 1 Comment
Happy Plan a Solo Vacation Day! With spring just around the corner, March is a perfect time to start planning a vacation. And while there are benefits to vacationing with friends and family, traveling by yourself can provide a truly amazing experience unlike any other. Here at OTBT, we are big proponents of the solo vacation. We believe it’s a great way to truly unplug, unwind, and get away from the hustle and bustle of life, as well discover new experiences, explore new horizons, and learn more about yourself along the way.
Ready to take the plunge and begin planning your trip? Let us help you make it a reality! While it may seem daunting at first, the right amount of research can take the stress and uncertainty out of your travel arrangements. We’ll cover everything you need to do to plan the ultimate solo vacay, from deciding on your dreamy, but doable, travel location to finding most comfortable sneakers for women traveling alone. Here’s a few helpful tips for planning your next solo vacation.
The first thing you need to do when planning your solo vacation is to determine how much money you can afford to spend. For example, do you have enough saved up for an exotic island or a vacation abroad? Or do you only have enough available for a simple long-weekend trip to a nearby city? Both options can be equally enjoyable, but only one may be feasible. Once your budget is in place, you can begin making more concrete decisions about how your money will be spent on your trip, which will determine how you will get there, where you stay, what you do when you get there, and so on.
Once the budget is figured out, you’ll be able to decide where you will be going on your solo vacation. You may have a location already in mind, or maybe you don’t. If not, begin researching the best places to take a solo vacation, keeping your budget and safety as well as your preferences in mind. Need some inspiration? Take a look at this list from Travel + Leisure.
Now that you know where you’re going, you’ll need to figure out how to get there, and it best to beginning arranging your transportation as soon as possible. If you’re traveling far and short on time, flying may be your best bet. Depending on where you’re heading, taking a train may be a more cost-effective option. And of course, if you’re strapped for cash and not traveling far, you can always turn your vacation into a leisurely solo road trip. No matter what method of transportation you decide, remember that getting there should be half the fun!
No one wants to stay cooped up in their room for an entire vacation. Research and plan some activities for you to take part in on your trip. Scour forums, read travel magazines, or rely on word of mouth to uncover the best sightseeing locations and most enjoyable outings. While popular tourist attractions may be worth pursuing, consider going off the beaten track and discovering lesser-known activities, like a quiet nature walk or shopping at a small local boutique. Once you find out what’s available to do, make a list of your top three activities, schedule them out for specific days, and call to reserve your spot if needed. Keep a list of additional activities on hand if you have extra time, but don’t overschedule yourself. Remain spontaneous and flexible and see where your vacation takes you!
Now that you know where you’re doing and what you will be doing, it’s important to begin thinking of the things you’ll need to pack. The challenge is to pack only what you need, while not forgetting the items you will need. When it comes to clothes, pick items that are versatile and can be styled more than one way. For example, instead of packing five pairs of women’s casual shoes, consider taking only one pair of comfortable but fashionable sneakers that can be worn with all of your outfits. Or take a long one neutral colored sweater that can be layered over your lighter clothing on colder days. Do this to pack less, which means less to weigh down your suitcase and less to forget behind.
Another way you can prepare for your trip is to research local restaurants and eateries. Take a look at the prices and determine how much of your budget should go towards your meals, and if you have enough to spend on at that upscale bistro you’ve been eyeing. And as we stated before, be sure to search for those lesser-known local venues that may offer a fun or unique dining experience. And while you should always stay smart about what may set off your allergies or give you food poisoning, don’t be afraid to try something new that you would not usually order. After all, it’s all about the experience.
The biggest thing to remember when planning a solo vacation is to always put safety first. Take appropriate precautions when traveling on your own. Be sure to stay in a safe place, even if you must spend a little extra money. Never go anywhere by yourself late at night. Stay away from locations known for criminal activity or hazardous conditions, regardless of what time of day it is. Never leave your luggage unattended, and keep your money and identification close to your body to discourage pickpockets. These are just a few basic rules to keep in mind while traveling on your own. For more information, be sure to check out this helpful article from Lifehack.
Be sure someone back home, either a friend or family member, knows that you are going on your trip. It would also be helpful for them to know where you’re staying, what you will be doing, and how you plan to get there. Make sure they have your cell phone number or some other way to get in touch with you if you’re in a place without cell service. This is important in case of an emergency or if they otherwise need to contact you. Also, be sure to call and check in with this person, or people, at the end of your day. Not only does this give reassurance that you’re okay on your trip, but it also gives you an opportunity to talk about your day and ward off homesickness or loneliness.
While planning is important for a successful solo trip, it’s also important to not sweat the little details and be unnecessarily stressed about the process. Remember, traveling should always be fun, and traveling by yourself should be no exception. Take your time and enjoy each moment – from the time you begin researching to the second you check out of your room. Have a plan in place, but remain flexible and open to trying new things. Take lots of photos to document your experience, and chat with locals to get great insight and even make a friend or two. Make the most of your trip, and embrace all the new discoveries you make about life, the world, and even yourself.
These are our tips for planning the best solo vacation. Did we miss anything? Let us know in the comments below!
And if you’re looking for comfortable but stylish walking sneakers for women traveling alone, be sure to shop our Travel Lite collection.
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