The next big trend in travel is: solo travel. Get ready to start booking “for one” the next time you head out. On Instagram, the hashtag has over 5.2 million tags, so that’s quite a big deal. But, why would you want to leave your loved ones behind and make memories all on your own?
One of the biggest misconceptions is that solo travel is dangerous. However, a 2019 survey found that 84% solo travellers are women. Solo Travel searches on Google have grown by 131% and occupies 11% of the total travel market. 25% travellers have said that they are willing to take up solo travel within the next 12 months. These stats are hard to ignore.
Here are some handy tips to make use of when you travel solo in 2020 -
Find affordable accommodation - There’s a difference between affordable and cheap. If you’re a solo traveller, your safety takes utmost importance. Make sure that you do thorough research before you book a place to stay. Thankfully, a number of online platforms offer reviews that will give you an idea of what your accommodation is like, through the eyes of fellow travellers. If you don’t want to stay in a “hotel” per se, there are other, extremely budgetable places, including couchsurfing, backpacking hostels, homestays and of course, the trusty ol’ YMCA!
Pack light - As a traveller, you’re going to be on your toes a lot when exploring. And as a solo traveller, you’re going to have to carry the weight of your luggage by yourself! This includes keeping valuables safe while navigating from one location to the next. And if you hit a shopping spree, then it becomes even more of a headache. Pack light clothes and accessories that will only take up minimum space in your limited luggage. You can also rent saddlebags from Royal Brothers to help ease the load that long distance travel can bring.
Find a local - Tourist guides tend to be pushy and have their own set of commercial places to introduce you to, so that they can make a quick buck from it. But when you get acquainted with a local resident, they will show you all the hidden gems across town. Not only that, but the tendency of a local is to make sure you’re treated well because you are their guest. It becomes a meaningful friendship rather than a business transaction, which will make your trip more meaningful.
Speak the local language - No one’s saying you should be fluent in Farsi! But if you pick up on a few words here and there, it will prove to be quite beneficial. Not only will locals appreciate the fact that you’re interested in their culture, but you will also find that you receive plenty of help along the way. In any case, the more you dig into the roots of a place using the local language as your shovel, the more you will discover that no regular tourist can talk of!
Quick transport - From the moment you touch down at the airport, know that travel is going to cost a lot. Tourist taxis are an exorbitant way to get across town. Forget about them! Seriously, they’re not worth it. And if a local taxi doesn’t want to charge you according to the metre, ditch them, too! The best, most economical and super efficient way to get you from here to there and anywhere has to be renting a bike! Royal Brothers has a massive fleet of bikes based on your travel preferences - from scooters to high-end bikes like Harley Davidson bikes and Royal Enfield bikes. Your travel is sorted when you choose Royal Brothers.
Emergency contact - In the day and age of social media, your loved ones can know about your whereabouts by simply checking your Instagram story! But that’s not enough. When you travel solo, you need to make sure that there is an emergency contact person who is dependable. Not only should you be updating them about where you’re planning to head, but they need to also check up on you now and again to make sure you’re ok.
Enjoy the moments - Again, thanks to social media, people are constantly capturing moments on their cameras. But you’re missing out on those moments. The fullness of a moment when discovering a new place, cuisine, culture or heritage site is lost when you try to preserve it through a camera lense. Be one of those rare types who takes it all in rather than the one who goes click-click-click!
Make new friends - Apart from rubbing shoulders with locals, make it a point to get into conversation with other tourists visiting the same place. There are a ton of solo travellers with their backpacks, adventuring through life. They are trusty ones who will give you a lot of travelling tips and maybe even join you on the trip. Isolation is never a good idea, so even while travelling, keep that in mind and make new friends.
Make the most of your freedom - You’ve alleviated the pain of having to hype a group to want to explore at the same pace as you. You literally make the rules on a solo trip as a solo traveller. Want to wake up early today? You can! Want to visit only a few places and take a break in the evening? You can! THE BEST part about solo travel is that you can get to be as spontaneous as you please. So you better make the most of it.
Take up a challenge - Your adventures need to be about breaking barriers. That’s also what Royal Brothers believes in. Do at least one epic thing that you usually wouldn’t even dare to do if you were back home. Be it doing something out of the box, to eating something you wouldn’t usually stomach, a challenge is what takes your adventure to another level.