Category Archives: Travel

Traveling alone: tips, facts, and all the fun benefits!

Traveling alone is not a new phenomenon, and so no one is surprised anymore. But how do you get started? Can you go out alone in the evening without any problems? And where are you going to eat? We will immediately reassure you below!

Traveling alone for the first time immediately raises a lot of questions. Safety is at the top of the list of doubts, but all in all, solo travel turns out to have more advantages than disadvantages. With this list, we help you on your way to making your (first) solo trip a success.

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Traveling alone versus safety

We should not be faint about it: traveling alone or in a group are two completely different experiences. In big cities – but certainly not all – it is not always wise to go out alone, and in clubs, it is better to keep a close eye on your glass and valuables.

Use your common sense and inform yourself about the destination where you want to go. People work there who know the destinations through and can make relevant recommendations.

Traveling alone means total freedom

Couples and groups of friends can confirm it: it’s not easy to make decisions when you have to take all the differing opinions into account. When traveling alone, you choose the destination, the type of stay, the excursions, and the period. That opens up a lot of perspectives that others can only dream of.

Don’t set yourself apart…

It’s a trap: retreating to your hotel room or wherever. A few tips: try to learn the language (in advance and on-site), sit at the bar at the restaurant, engage in active conversation with the locals, and possibly book an organized tour. In short, you decide to what extent you want to be ‘alone. And the great thing: you don’t have to answer to anyone.

…or separate yourself

For many people, traveling alone represents conscious seclusion. Withdraw yourself and unwind in a place where you don’t know anyone else. Something that is only possible if you actually travel alone. Especially if this is your way of escaping the hectic life at home.

Share memories

Those who travel alone will not always immediately be able to share small and pleasant moments with others. So take lots of pictures to talk about it afterward, or let your friends know how you’re doing via social media.

Be careful with Facebook and Instagram, though: Constantly pointing out that you’re not at home can give people with less good intentions ideas. But make sure that someone at home knows where you are (approximately).

Precautions

Some countries aren’t exactly female-friendly, so be sure to practice the “no” in your destination language. Not married? A fake wedding ring on the finger can give your ‘white lie’ some extra credibility. However, as a woman traveling alone, it is simply better to avoid certain countries unless you know people there or hang out with acquaintances locally.

Also, make copies, photos, and travel documents and send them by email to yourself and to someone you can trust. In case of emergency (stolen or lost), you always have a backup.

Where (not) to go?

You can basically discover the whole world because there is no one you have to take into account or who is going to stop you. So take advantage of that freedom. On the other hand, anticipate problems at destinations that are known for their less attractive sides.

You can find out whether a country is safe to travel there (solo) or not on the Foreign Affairs website. For the latest state of affairs regarding travel restrictions as a result of the corona, check the government’s coronavirus COVID-19 page.

WHY RENT A CAR TO GET AROUND ON A TRIP?

There are many solutions for getting around while traveling: stop, bus, train, taxi, etc. and each of its solutions have their advantages and disadvantages. However, car rental is one of the solutions I use the most, and for me, it is the best way to get around while traveling.

Since my first independent trip, I have lost count of the different means of transport that I could use: boat, tuk-tuk, stop, bus, minibus, scooter, train, taxi, plane, etc.

I favored the cheapest transport during my first trips, and I attached very little importance to comfort.

Since traveling as a family, I have started to use car rental more and more because public transport is not always easy with young children.

Even if initially, car rental was not part of my travel philosophy, I admit that I have now developed a taste and that I see many advantages: it has even become for my sense the best way to get around on a trip when possible, of course

No time constraints

The main advantage of car rental is that you free yourself from any time constraints. Indeed, if you travel by bus or train, you will depend on the latter’s departure times, which can sometimes be restrictive in planning your days or certain visits. This is all the more true with children: the car makes it possible to optimize your trips during naps, and you can thus better respect their rhythm.

Quick trips

The car (for reasonable distances) is also a fast means of transport compared to others. Indeed, public transport imposes many stops and waiting times on each ascent or descent of passengers with the loading and unloading of luggage that goes with it. If your time is limited, you will save precious time with a car rental.

An economical solution (in some cases)

Contrary to popular belief, car rental can often be an economical solution. Except in countries like Iceland or Kenya, where rental prices are staggering, you can increasingly find very competitive car rental rates.

If you are more than one, do the math quickly, and you will realize that it is not necessarily a more expensive solution than public transport.

Also, remember that the buses will drop you off at the bus station and the train at the station and that you will then have to pay for a taxi or other means to reach your accommodation. With your car, you are going to the right place.

A comfortable means of transport

Even if certain means of transport can guarantee you certain funny situations from time to time, you will keep lasting memories, are not always very comfortable, and have to suffer the incivility of some.

For example, I remember a 5 pm train trip to travel 700km in Pakistan in the cheapest class where we were squeezed like sardines on tiny, very hard wooden benches surrounded. On the other hand, others had motion sickness and did not hesitate to vomit on the floor. At nightfall, ras wandered in the wagons: today I am laughing and do not necessarily have bad memories, but I found the time long. With a car rental, we avoid this kind of situation.

Ideal for tours

This is a major advantage of car rental: the freedom to visit. Without a car, you will sometimes have to take day trips or be dependent on local transport. Firstly, these have a cost, and secondly, they are restrictive if you want to take your time: you stop when you want to eat, have a drink, rest, take a photo, and it’s very pleasant.

Safe journeys

In some countries, the drivers of buses, taxis, or tuks-tuks think they are pilots. They promise us great scares… ;-). You are not safe from another reckless vehicle with your car, but you drive at your own pace … it can be reassuring.

It can be dangerous in some countries to travel after dark to reach a restaurant, bar, or other. Coming back with your vehicle is a safety …

It allows more meetings!

In the beginning, I said that car rental was not part of my travel philosophy because I considered that we were more in contact with local life and the natives by using local transport. This is partly true because in most transport you will be with a majority of foreign travelers.

The car saves undeniable time: you can take advantage of this saved time to spend time with the locals at destinations and discover more aspects of their lives. This disadvantage that I attributed to car rental is ultimately turned into an advantage.

Of course, not all of the above is true for all countries, but car rental has its benefits in many cases.

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