Erratic engineeress

A personal blog fuelled by caffeine and curiosity.

Real talk about solo travel pt. 1 – Intro to a series

Solo travel, i.e. travelling alone, is often hailed as the ultimate way of travelling in today’s popular culture. Many travel bloggers advertise it as the final test to become a true, seasoned traveller and an instant solution for personal growth and mental wellbeing – well, I call bullshit. Although I love travelling by myself and believe everyone should give it a go, because it is a learning experience, it is not some magical path to enlightenment. Whether you’ll enjoy it or not strongly depends on the type of person you are and not liking it doesn’t somehow make you anything less as a person.

Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, let’s talk about what solo travel is really like. I’ve done a lot of it in the past couple of years and it wasn’t always sunshine and roses. I plan to go soul deep into my experiences in this post series, so: Warning – emotional outpouring and honest discussion of life stuff ahead!

By solo travel I don’t mean joining an organised group trip by yourself, but actually travelling alone, independently with no fixed plan or support in a foreign country. Although I really enjoy the freedom it brings, it is also a mental struggle on many different levels and takes some getting used to. The main advice from me would be to gradually immerse yourself into it and learn not to expect too much from yourself, because everyone’s experience is different.

Since I tried to be as honest as possible, these posts ended up being a whole series in the form of frequently asked questions about solo travel. Hopefully they’ll give you an impression of what solo travel is really like and help you decide if that’s something you’d like to try, without the usual exaggerated propaganda. So, get your reading glasses on and let’s go:


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9 responses to “Real talk about solo travel pt. 1 – Intro to a series”

  1. I totally agree with you. I have gone on the plane alone flying to Europe, but when I get there I am met by family who I travel with. At home I grab my grandchildren and go with them. I love to travel, but there are places I prefer to be with others and not enjoy my trip with perfect strangers.

    1. Well, I love travelling by myself as I said, but the point is that everyone is different 🙂

  2. How did you know I have reading glasses? This sounds interesting. I have been told, in times past, that most Europeans know at least some of a few different languages. Is this true?

    1. Yes, absolutely. We’re taught English in schools, so that’s at least 2 from the start, and some languages are similar to each other so people usually learn those too. I currently speak 4 and bits of others.

      1. That’s really cool. I’ve tried a couple of times but I need to just discipline myself and do it.

      2. Have you tried Duolingo? It’s free and I like their informal, fun approach

      3. I had started to a couple of years ago and then just kind of left off. That’s a good idea, though.

      4. I learned a fair bit of Swedish that way, but talking to actual Swedes is a different matter 😅

      5. Like learning Spanish, I expect, then trying it out on my Hispanic friends.

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