The Fairytale Traveler

Travel & Lifestyle Blog

Ireland's Ancient East, The Rock of Cashel, Christa Thompson, traveling for the first time

9 Tips For Planning A Solo Vacation

Planning a solo vacation? Many people are daunted by the prospect of going abroad by themselves but most who have done this before will tell you just what an amazing experience it can be.


Going on solo vacation puts you in complete control of your experience, so you can do exactly what you want, plus many people find that solo travel can also be helpful in terms of developing confidence, independence and other skills.


Finally, solo travel is also a great way to meet new people and try new experiences that you might not have done if you were with a partner/friends/family. Here are a few tips to make the most of your solo holiday.


what to wear on a plane, Christa Thompson, Travel Blogger, solo vacation


Follow These Tips to Plan a Solo Vacation


Work Out A Budget for Your Adventure


First, you need to work out how much money you can afford to spend as this will affect where you go and for how long. There are various costs to consider, including:


  • Travel
  • Accommodation
  • Food
  • Daily spending
  • Travel insurance
  • Supplies needed for the trip


Having a budget allows you to stay in control of your spending so that you do not go overboard and return home in a difficult financial situation.


Ireland's Ancient East, Loughcrew, Christa Thompson, places to visit in Ireland, traveling for the first time, Money Tips for Moms, solo vacation
Enjoying the view from the hilltop hike at Loughcrew, photo by Ed Hannon


Choose Somewhere That You Will Feel Confident


It is understandable having some anxiety about traveling to a different country by yourself which is why it is a smart idea to travel somewhere that you will feel confident.


This might be an English-speaking country, somewhere that has a lot of travelers or somewhere that you know a few people who you could turn to. In the future, you could then look to more unique destinations with the confidence knowing that you can get by by yourself.


hotel xcaret mexico, solo vacation
A hotel like Hotel Xcaret in Playa del Carmen, Mexico is perfect for a solo vacation


Find Suitable Accommodation


Equally important as the destination is your accommodation, as this will be your home away from home for the trip.


A drawback to traveling solo is that you will not have someone to split the cost of a hotel room with, so you may have to look into more affordable options or find cheaper hotels.


Hostels are much more affordable and can be a good option if you are looking to make new friends as these are always fun, sociable places and filled with other solo travelers.


map, passport, best countries to study abroad, schoolwork while traveling


Use An International Travel Checklist


When you travel by yourself for the first time, it is very easy to forget something because you will not have anyone to remind you that you are missing an essential item.


Therefore, it is a smart idea to use an international travel checklist which will make sure that you are fully prepared for a rewarding, enjoyable and safe experience abroad. 


make money while you travel, Christa Thompson, earn money while traveling
Having a Guinness in Ireland, go figure.


Travel Off-Peak 


If you are looking to keep costs down and avoid the crowds, then it is a smart move to book your holiday for off-peak dates (outside of school holidays).


While summer travel is often regarded as the best, sometimes you will find that a winter holiday will give you a completely different viewpoint of a destination and a good way to escape during what can be a gloomy time of the year.


places to eat in dusseldorf, solo vacation
Leave time to explore without time constraints


Have A Loose Itinerary When You’re Alone


As mentioned, one of the great benefits of solo travel is that you are free to do exactly what you want.


It is a smart idea to research your destination before and to have a loose itinerary so that you always have something to do; however, make sure it is still flexible so that you can change your mind if you do not feel like it or you make new friends and have plans with them. 


Consider Group Tours


If you are looking to make new friends on the trip, then look into a group tour as these are always highly social and a fantastic way to explore your destination with other travelers.


A solo vacation can feel strange and isolating at first which is why it is helpful to have social plans early on.


Unsolicited calls


Stay Connected To Home


Of course, when you travel abroad by yourself, you will want to stay closely connected to home so that you can keep in touch but also for safety reasons.


Check in with people back at home every so often and make sure that you provide them with a copy of your itinerary, contact information and a photocopy of your passport, bank cards and travel insurance in case anything happens.


It is also a good idea to inform your neighbors and have them keep an eye on your home while you are away if it will be vacant.


Travel photography tips, christa thompson, solo vacation


Take Lots Of Photos


Finally, make sure that you take lots of photos on your trip. This is so that you always have memories of this special travel experience and so that you can show your friends and/or family what a great time you had on your solo trip.


Everyone should experience a solo vacation at one point because it can be such a unique, life-affirming and special experience and the above tips should help you to make the most of the trip.

Christa Thompson

Christa Thompson is the Founder and Chief Editor of The Fairytale Traveler. She started traveling the world in 2003 when she attended a summer abroad study at the University of Cambridge in England. Since then, her wanderlust has been fierce. Her three passions in life are her son, traveling, and being creative. The Fairytale Traveler brand gives Christa the opportunity to do all of these things and to live intentionally every day. "It's never too late to believe in what you love and to pursue your dreams." -Christa Thompson

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to top