Whether you are planning a big adventure, packing for a short getaway, or even going solo on a business trip, there are many great benefits to travelling alone – from the freedom to set your own itinerary to opportunities for a break from the noise and distractions of everyday life. Being prepared also helps you make the most of it. Here’s our guide to solo travel from lived experience, filled with some of the best travelling tips!
1. Do your research
Find out all you can about the city or region you’re travelling to. For example, if you’re driving through any remote areas, make sure you know what the weather has in store – unsurfaced roads often close if it gets too wet. And you should definitely also check on mobile phone coverage before you head out. Find out more about national weather and mobile phone coverage.
If you’re travelling to a new city, also check the best ways to get around – many transport networks have their own passes, such as Victoria’s Myki pass, NSW’s Opal card, Queensland’s Go Card and Adelaide’s MetroCard. If you are travelling on a budget this will help you plan your finances in advance by setting a travel budget – along with setting money aside for important things like restaurants, food and activities!
2. Make emergency plans
We all know that life is full of surprises. Prepare for the unexpected by creating a list of important phone numbers, including local emergency services. If you are travelling overseas travel insurance is a must – but even further afield in Australia it can good idea to find out about domestic travel insurance that covers interstate flight cancellation, missing baggage or sports equipment loss.
3. Best travel packing tips
We are big fans of travel lists. And that goes for packing! A packing list will help you get off on a good foot (especially if there’s no one else to remind you of what is needed). Be sure to include toiletries, electronics and chargers and travel documents. Lastly, consider packing a money belt or a hidden pouch to store your credit cards and extra cash. It’s also important to check the baggage restrictions of your airline if you are flying.
4. Off you go! Psst – tell family and friends the plan
Keep people in the loop! Before you set off, inform your friends and family about your travel itinerary. Share details such as your destination, accommodation, and estimated dates of arrival and departure. It’s always good to have someone back home aware of your plans in case you need to be contacted and are out of mobile range and to extend your support network if you need it.
5. Take pictures and connect with travellers
This is an easy one. Capture your travel memories by taking plenty of pictures. Not only will photos of local attractions and experiences be great mementos (while showing off your developing and/or professional photographer’s eye), but they may also be a great t way to share and converse with other travellers on social media. You might even pick up a few tips about the region along the way.
6. Make the most of your time
It’s not all business. Whether you’re taking some time out to explore the city, tour the museums or explore the nearby natural attractions – getting an early start helps you beat the crowds and make the most of your day. Trust your instincts but remember that when travelling solo it can be often easier to strike up conversations and connect with people. So get out there fresh and invigorated at least once!
7. Find accommodation that suits your style and budget
Finally, of the most important solo travel tips is to choose the accommodation that matches your plans, style and budget. Different hotels, apartments or boutique inns will land you close to the action and appeal to a wide range of needs and tastes. You’ll find plenty of accommodation options and styles here. Enjoy your journey!