Table for One: the Top 5 Reasons Traveling Solo Rocks

A lot of people miss out on traveling because their partner, spouse, or close friend doesn’t want to do it. Instead of going alone, they pass it up. You really don’t have to do that. Why hold yourself prisoner to someone else’s preferences? If your family or friends don’t want to travel with you, and safety’s not an issue, hop on a plane and go where you want to go. Solo travel rocks, and according to published reports it’s on the rise. Here’s why.

5 You Might Save Some Money

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Traditional travel philosophy holds that solo travelers end up paying more for their trips because they foot the entire cost of their hotel rooms themselves. On package tours and many cruises, they often end up paying single supplements that essentially punish them for traveling alone. That’s not always true, however. When you’re on your own, you miss out on some of the subtle peer pressure that encourages you to spend. You’re not going to be buying a round at the pub or buying something you don’t really want at a shop because a friend has encouraged you to “just get something.”

4 You Have Time to Think

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Introverts will perhaps understand this one a little more than extroverts, but it really applies to everyone. When you travel you are exposed to myriad sights, smells, and experiences, and it can take a while to process them all. When you’re traveling with other people you don’t always get that chance – if you want to spend an afternoon in quiet reflection or write in a journal, you’re often met with the query “why aren’t you talking? Are you mad at me?” If you’re on your own, you can soak in your environment and consider it fully.

3 You Can Still Be as Social as You Want

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When you travel alone you’re as social, or as solitary, as you want to be. It can actually be much easier to meet new friends when you’re on your own, since you’re not concentrating on interacting with your travel companions. If you have friends in the city you’re visiting you can meet them for lunch or spend a day together, and then go on your way. If you don’t want to have social interactions with anyone over the course of your trip you can do that too, and nobody will be offended.

2 You Truly Get a Break from It All

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When you travel alone, you really do get a break from it all – everyone you know and everything that might be stressing you out at home. You can return to the “real world” refreshed and ready to seize the day because you’ve truly had some time away from it and a chance to take stock, reflect and regroup.

1 You Get Your Own Way

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This one isn’t selfish, as it might initially sound. Going on vacation with other people, even those you love or like immensely, usually involves compromise and negotiation, and you might miss out on things you really want to do. Worse, your friends might agree to do what you’d like, but behave like total pains in the asses about it and ruin the entire experience. When you’re paying hundreds or thousands of dollars on a plane ticket and travel expenses, this can lead to resentment. It’s been said that the quickest way to lose a friend is to live with them; the second quickest way might be to travel together. When you’re on your own you have the freedom to go anywhere you choose and do what you want, when you want. You’re not interfering with anyone else’s vacation experience and they aren’t interfering with yours. You can go at your own pace: if you want to spend an entire day wandering through the Louvre or surfing or watching football matches at a pub, nobody’s going to fuss about it.

Don’t base your travel plans on whether or not you have a traveling companion – if you want to get out there in the world and experience all it has to offer, go on your own. You’ll have fun. Get to it.

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