Greece

8 SOLO TRAVEL TIPS

30 July 2017



There are some mistakes that could be avoided if only we knew better. When travelling solo you have to rely on yourself, so here are 8 tips on how to solo travel (or actually, travel in general).


• BE PREPARED BE PREPARED BE PREPARED

I can't stress that enough, being prepared is key. When travelling solo, it means you can't rely on anyone about anything. Suitcase too heavy to carry ? Forgot your toothbrush ? No one can help you with that. So it's up to you to have spare cables in all your bags, photocopies of your passport, access to your bank account, batteries charged, SD cards IN BEFORE LEAVING the hotel, medicines etc etc. Solo travel can be stressful because if you forget something important, it can ruin your day or worst : your trip. But guess what ? It's what preparation is for ! 

Days before leaving, I do a list of items I need with me, especially tech that can be expensive to buy once your travel started. Are the plugs the same in the other country ? Do you need to get an adaptor ? 

First thing you do when coming back in your room is putting your batteries on charge. Once they're charged, don't wait for the morning. Put them right back in the camera and in your bag. You never know how sleepy or late you'll be in the morning. Organising your things before bed will save you many struggles. 


• FRESHEN UP YOUR ENGLISH

Travelling solo didn't scare me at all since everyone spoke English in Greece and I do too. I could go around, read signs and ask for help. Being able to communicate and understand what's going on around you will save you time, money and stress. I work in tourism in Paris, and you'd be chocked how many clients I welcome everyday, not speaking a word of English or French. Nothing, just their mother tongue. They are worried, they wasted money on useless taxis, expensive restaurants etc, because they couldn't ask and didn't do the research. Don't expect people to speak your tongue. And be thankful if they speak a little English !


• HANDLE YOUR MONEY

There are several types of travellers, I'm the one that likes good things and not really counting my money. I always make sure to have some cash but also my VISA. I hate using cash, so I pay a monthly fee to use my card around the world without charges. But there are some places, like Athens, where you can't use your card in any freaking places. So always have cash for emergencies and access to your bank account. You get sick, you need a flight, a hotel, wanna buy something expensive etc. Being able to handle your money from your phone/laptop is key. 


• DON'T LOOK CLUELESS

Looking like a tourist will put you in danger. And looking like a tourist doesn't mean not walking around with  a big camera or anything of value. Looking like a tourist means looking clueless. Living in Paris, I pretty much mastered the art of "I'm lost but I don't look like it". Nose in your map, holding your bag as if your new born child was in it, taking out huge amounts of cash and counting them in the street, yelling "where are we", will not help you. And yes, I've seen people do that in Paris. 

You need to read a map, use your phone if possible, it will always look like you are reading a text or something. Lost ? Don't stand there looking in every direction. Sit down, take the time to check your map, don't look scared. You need to ask for directions but you're alone ? Say "I'm meeting friends there and there, can you help me ?". It will sound like people are expecting you and that if something happens to you, it will be noticed right away. 

These are little things that make the difference between a tourist in Paris and a girl who lives there and just happens to walk around with an expensive camera. 


• ADAPT TO THE SITUATION

On a trip, things don't always go your way and you need to adapt to that. Pretty much works for life in general actually. It's ok to rethink plans, mistakes happens and don't yell at the poor receptionist or taxi driver. They don't care and it's not their fault. If you're prepared and opened to new adventures, any inconvenience on a trip becomes a good story trust me. You'll hate it at the moment but then it'll be the one memory you'll share at brunch and makes everyone laugh or envy you that you had such great adventures. 


• BE FRIENDLY BUT NOT TOO MUCH

Travelling solo is a great opportunity to meet new people but don't be afraid to tell others to leave you alone. Sitting at a dinner table by yourself doesn't mean you need company, you can just enjoy your food like a big girl/boy. Some people fear loneliness so badly that they think it's universal but it's not. Others will think that a person on their own is a call to be approached. Nope, I just like being by myself.

Most of the time, a nice "no thanks" will be enough. Don't be too rough and get someone angry, you don't know what they could do to you. 


• APPS ARE LIFESAVERS

Your phone will be your best friend. It's your computer, map, music library, bank account, ├╝ber etc. You can handle you entire trip just with your phone. Make sure to have a portable charger to keep the battery alive (cause you'll use it even more on your own 24/7) and download as many apps, maps possible before leaving. Research restaurants and cool cafes only locals enjoy around you. It's a powerful tool to make your trip fun and unique. 


• JUST ASK

As simple as that. Lost ? Ask. Don't know where to go during the day ? Ask. Want a good restaurant ? Ask. Taxi drivers and receptionists have got to be the best people to ask, ever. They are both locals working with tourists so they will know what you'll love. I had one day in Athens and I didn't know what to do there. I didn't think I could get anything done with just about 10h before my flight. So I asked my taxi driver. He told me the 2 things I should see and I didn't regret. 

The lovely lady working in my hotel in Perissa gave me the bus schedules, showed me exactly where to get it, gave me local advice about the places I wanted to go. She helped me organise my entire day in 10 minutes and all I had to do was ask. 



There are so many other tips that could be mentioned about solo travel. More about safety, organisation, photography etc. I will touch on that on other posts. But these are the main points I believe could totally change your trip. If you have other to share, comment bellow, I'm always happy to learn !


4 comments

  1. Your website is so fresh and beautiful.

    Awesome tips.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Great tips, I liked it. They will help me, since I am planning a trip soon if all goes well.

    Kisses. :)

    ReplyDelete
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  4. you are looking so fresh and stunning in that shot

    This Girl Loves Chic xx

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