Please Don’t Be Afraid To Travel On Your Own

Bundi, India
You want to travel. You make a vague plan. Maybe you’ll fly to Thailand or maybe to Mexico, but either way, you’re leaving in six months time. You start saving money, you start doing research every single night and your level of excitement grows with each passing hour.

Of course, as this will be your first ‘real’ travel experience, you naturally prefer to travel with other people and so you start asking your friends to join you on your epic adventure. As you show them photos you found online of white sand beaches on a Thai island and of the Mayan ruins of Chichen-Itza, you are more than confident that you will have a travel partner or two in no time at all.

But interestingly enough, the first friend you ask, perhaps your closest friend, turns you down. And so you move on to the next friend, but they too, tell you that they have no desire to join you at all. The third friend, the fourth friend and even that guy that you don’t really like but whose company you think you could stand for a few months in Southeast Asia, all say no as well.

Suddenly, you are faced with the idea of embarking on a journey to faraway and very foreign lands all alone. You start to doubt whether or not you are up for the challenge, whether or not you have the courage necessary to survive as a solo traveler.

Maybe you decide to postpone your trip for another six months, hoping that one of your friends will change their mind and decide to tag along. Maybe you decide to forget about your trip altogether, fully convinced that you can only travel so far away from home with a friend or travel companion by your side.

You still desperately want to travel, so much so that you still spend many a night awake in bed researching random destinations, reading every travel article you can find and browsing through travel blog after travel blog. But now you try to accept the fact that what you read and see online is as close as you’ll come to actually traveling yourself.


Perhaps, during your online dreaming, you stumbleupon my travel blog and you decide to stick around long enough to read a couple of posts. Maybe you find yourself reading this very post and you can relate to that process of giving up on your travel goals simply because you don’t want to travel alone. And in all honesty, if that is the case, then I’m quite happy that you are reading this post right now.

Here’s my advice to you. You may be on your own when you board that flight to Bangkok or Mexico City, but believe me, once you arrive, you’ll NEVER actually be alone.

That’s how travel works. Unless you stare at the ground and never talk to anyone, you’re going to meet people when you travel, lots and lots of people from all over the world who will be interested in meeting and hanging out with you. In fact, meeting new people is probably one of the easiest things to do when traveling because you have an instant connection with every other traveler. All travelers are strangers in a foreign land and as a result, we often would love an opportunity to travel with a new friend.

Maybe you’ll meet someone at the hostel or guesthouse where you’re staying or at a cafe, in a shop, on a bus or just in the street. Maybe you’ll end up wandering around a city for an afternoon with this person and then parting ways. And the next day, you’ll probably meet someone else to share new experiences with as well. Perhaps you’ll meet someone and decide to travel together for a couple of days or even a couple of weeks. Maybe your plans match up so well that you team up for a month or more.

The point is, you’ll meet plenty of people in just about every single corner of the world, even if you’re the most shy, introverted person on the planet.

Drinks in Mumbai, India


When I left for Southeast Asia back in 1999, I did so all alone. Sure, I asked every single one of my friends to join me, just as most of us would do, but they all said no. However, after a long, hard internal debate, I made the decision to visit Asia anyway, with no travel companion. And this decision proved to be the most important decision I have ever made.

I won’t lie to you. When I boarded that flight from Los Angeles to Bangkok, I was shaking. I was so scared of the uncertainty that awaited me that I could barely even think and as a result, I couldn’t help but realize that this was the most terrifying experience of my life.

In fact, several years later, when I was given ten seconds notice one day that I would have to give a forty-five minute presentation to 1000 people on a cruise ship, the fear I felt at that moment was NOTHING in comparison to how I felt on that flight to Thailand.

But of course, despite the fear, as I soared high over the Pacific Ocean, high over Taiwan and eventually into Southeast Asia, I knew that there was no turning back.


…and I passed through immigration and customs at the Bangkok Airport and I even managed to make it from the airport into the city center without any problems despite the fact that it was after midnight. I spent the night in a budget hotel room and then, during my first stroll around the streets of Bangkok the very next morning, I met a British traveler at a cafe. We started talking and sure enough, we both had planned to travel overland to Cambodia in order to celebrate the Millennium at Angkor Wat.

That was it. Just like that I had a travel partner, less than nine hours after I had arrived in Bangkok. And we got along so well that we ended up traveling together for almost two months.

Will that happen to you when you embark on your adventure? There’s no guarantee of course. But again, if you look up, smile and start conversations with those around you, the chances of you actually being alone are quite miniscule (unless you want to be alone).

And before long, you’ll understand why I answer every single email that asks me what it’s like to always travel alone with the very same response. I simply say, “I may be a solo traveler but I’m never really on my own.

So, with that now said, I urge you to not let the fear of traveling by yourself stop you from achieving your travel goals. It would be such a shame to let that happen, especially when that fear will disappear shortly after you arrive at your first destination.

Have you experienced this fear? Have you reconsidered your travel plans when your friends didn’t want to join you? Do you agree that meeting people is quite easy while on the road?

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407 Responses to Please Don’t Be Afraid To Travel On Your Own

  1. I totally agree, travelling alone rocks! I have been living/travelling for 10 years, always alone, although alone is very relative since you meet soo many people it is hard to remember them all!

    • M says:

      Recently divorce other side of 35 thinking about going to Japan end of April. I travel for work but travelling solo for pleasure I’ve not done. This is an opportunity to start over and make new friends and start over… Would love to go – but is Japan the place to go and not feel completely alone? Where are the best places to go? Does anyone recommend Japan?

  2. charlotte says:

    Its very interesting to read everyone’s posts…I can’t believe how much i can relate to everything your all saying..I thought it was just me thinking these things.
    After years of dreaming about travelling I’ve finally booked my trip and leaving for Asia at the beginning of April.
    I am also travelling solo and I am soo nervous about being on my own.
    The thing I’m worrying about is how safe is thailand/asia? My family r really worried and their concerns r starting to rub off on me :-/ please help!

    • Sarah M says:

      Hey charlotte!
      I went partially travelling round India and Sri Lanka on my own and just booked my own fully solo trip starting in bangkok in april. From my experiences travelling round these areas are perfectly safe as long as you keep your wits about you. I know no one who has had any major issues and from I’ve read fits this too.
      Youve done the hardest part by booking a flight!
      S x

    • Espyro says:

      Hey, charlotte!
      What coincidence! I’m also headed to SE Asia (Bangkok, Thailand), for April 1st this year! And I’ve had the same problems. I’m happy that I might have good advice or even a solution for you!
      Yes, Thailand might be dangerous according to statistics, but once you’re there, it’s all different. As Earl said, with a normal level of common sense, almost everywhere abroad is hardly more dangerous than at home, and Thailand is definitely no exception. You’ll be fine, as the risk included (which is much more tiny than you would imagine) is nothing in comparison to the opportunity you’re giving yourself. If you really need to be secure, go ask the people who actually did travel and thus can speak out of experience! Earl wrote several great posts about this topic, and so did many, many others. They’ll never tell you that the risk is too much, because they know.
      The actual problem is that your family will always worry. It’s very hard to convince them, even with best reasoning and a well of information to back you up. A caring mother can’t do anything but worry for her child if it’s thousands of miles away, even knowing that he/she is as cautious, reasonable, intelligent, etc. as ever possible. Another reason is that if someone can’t imagine doing something for him/herself, he/she is likely to project it onto you. People who are uncertain of themselves are often just as uncertain about a friend/family member. And being unable to convince them is totally fine! Why? Because they can’t even know if travelling is right! They haven’t tried it for themselves! Besides the ones who did travel for a longer time in a faraway country. I found that those are the ones in my family who agree with me and support me. Try to talk to people who did similar things in their lives.
      I think you should stop trying to convince your worried family members. You should state out that you understand their worries but are confident that things are going to work out and that you can do this. That’s all you can do. You can listen to their advice, as sometimes there come good ones you haven’t heard yet. But that’s it. They don’t have to understand this rationally because the problem is emotional. And more importantly, you’re the one who needs to be convinced, not them! Don’t misinterprete their concerns as your naivety, or your inability to convince them as a badly reasoned plan of yours. You can do this and you’ll be fine. Let go of having to convince them, and their insecurities stop peeling off on you. :)
      Hope this helped. We can talk about stuff in detail if you want to! I still wonder that there’s so many guys visiting Thailand this April… :D

  3. Scott L says:

    Hi guys,

    I recently found out my wife has been cheating for many years. Of course, I’m filing for divorce but with great sadness and hurt out comes traveling!

    I’ve never been travelling especially solo and I’m planning a trip within the next couple of months from North to south of the West coast of America.

    Starting in Vancouver, Seattle, San Francisco, LA and finish in San Diego? I’m a chef by trade and I think this trip will turn into a ‘food trip’.

    So, my question is (as a Brit) how should I go about my trip?

    P.S – I’d be lying if, I said I wasn’t somewhat scared travelling by myself.

    • Anna says:

      Hi Scott,
      I’m not from the US but I just wanted to comment and say that I think you’ll have a brilliant time travelling alone. Your plan sounds really good, will you be driving?
      Don’t be afraid of travelling on your own, it is a fantastic thing to do in my experience. I’m planning to do a US road trip alone within the next couple of years, I’m very excited about it. I’ve done trips on my own and I am convinced that it is the best way to travel. Good luck, let us know here how it goes!

  4. Patricia says:

    I’m planning a trip by myself to Los Angeles by myself for a meeting for about 3 days but I’m so worried about leaving my son I don’t know what to dooooooooo ahhhh

    • Linda says:

      He will sense your anxiety. If you act like its no big deal he will not worry. Kids need to learn coping skills and a three day separation will help him learn he is ok without you and that you’ll be back. I am saying this with the benefit of hindsight as my kids are grown and on their own now!

  5. Brian says:

    I have a quick question to those who have travelled solo. I’m planning a trip to Thailand for 3 weeks, leaving April 8th. Should I plan everything in advance, as far as where to stay? I like the idea of having everything planned out but at the same time I’m worried if I meet some cool people and decide to change plans it might be better just to do everything on the fly. Any suggestions?

    • Anna says:

      Hi Brian, I don’t think you should. You can but it’s best if you’re flexible and prepared to do other things. My best trip was when I booked a hotel for the first 3 nights and everything else was unplanned. I met a fellow traveller who suggested an island in Thailand that I would have never thought of going to without his input and I had the best time there. So I reckon just do everything on the fly. :)

  6. Bill Persson says:

    Very interesting article and some aspects made me think of my current situation. At this moment I don’t have a traveling partner or neither any experiences of traveling solo in southeast asia but I have been having thoughts of leaving of to Thailand for 2,5 to 3 weeks in december this year but I have some obstacles in my way. One concern is that my parents are quite worried about me planning going through a trip like this by myself not to mention my experience with traveling. Also I have a very little information about Bangkok such as where cheap guesthouses are in the capital and what to do there so I don’t know if I should stay 3 weeks in Bangkok which is my main destination but now I have gotten second thoughts due to the fact that its a big city filled with so much to offer which comes to another concern..that is, how much of a travel budget should I bring along with me and to be honest.. I am quite a saving person then a spending one and the round trip flight with Qatar Airways will cost 6100 swedish crones (I am from Sweden) so alot of money already goes to flight there and back home. One thing I do realize is that in Bangkok you don’t have to spend to much money each day but I have these thoughts that are still bothering me. That’s why I need some help and that is if I should stay in Bangkok for those three weeks or should I stay there for a shorter period and also about the travel budget, how much would it cost for an 18 year old to spend a good time in Bangkok or wherever it is recommend to stay during some time for a cheap price and how would a suitable travel schedule look for me? By the way I don’t party to much and since I am by myself I am taking more precautions. So for me a good time basically would mean enjoying the environment and the surroundings and possibly visit any beaches not to far away. But also I want to know what there is to visit in bangkok and that when I leave I need to have alot to bring home with me (stories etc). I know it may sound much to ask for but it would be truly helpful getting some answers from someone with a little more experience.
    Cheers! / Bill

    • Nadia says:

      Hi Bill,

      For the budget hostel, you can search along Khao San Road, it’s a very friendly place for budget travelers and you will meet all travelers across the world! There are so many solo travelers in Bangkok, you don’t need to much worries! I suggest you to google and collecting info about what do’s and don’t in Bangkok, very useful before you do solo traveling and you don’t have to spend a lot there. Anyway you will enjoy Bangkok!

    • Sarah M says:

      Hi Bill.
      A one-way flight through Norwegian airlines for me cost £230 from London to Bangkok. There are cheaper flights available so try momondo.
      Best option is to research where’d you’d like to go. Ive been told by some friends they prefered Chaing Mai to Bangkok so always better to keep yourself Open to options. Khao San road will be my first destinantion when I arrive 9th April, I’ll keep you update when I’m on the ground.
      I literally can’t wait, I’m like a kid at Christmas!
      S x

    • Sarah M says:

      Hi Bill.
      A one-way flight through Norwegian airlines for me cost £230 from London to Bangkok via Oslo. There are cheaper flights available so try momondo.
      Best option is to research where’d you’d like to go. Ive been told by some friends they prefered Chaing Mai to Bangkok so always better to keep yourself Open to options. Khao San road will be my first destinantion when I arrive 9th April, I’ll keep you update when I’m on the ground.
      I literally can’t wait, I’m like a kid at Christmas!
      S x

      • Bill says:

        Hello again everyone. My plans have changed alot since my last comment and I will be presenting it now. I have planned this huge solo backpacking trip to Thailand with a start in bangkok and then I move on from there. I’ve already booked my round trip flight ticket with emirates for 5000 swedish crones (about 600 dollars) which in my mind is a pretty good price considering that I will travel in 8 months (22 nov to 22 dec) so it’s a early ticket but with a good price on it. Now I’m focusing about learning as much as I can about Thailand (Places, Food, Budget, Travel plan and the list will move on..) and also the preparation tools and preparation musts (Health insurance, inoculations…) and I’m on a good path of finding alot of tips and information from websites, books and other backpackers experience. But my major issue is how I can avoid negative talk and worries from people without it impacting me in a bad way, especially my parents since they are worried a bit for now but it will turn more serious as the time goes by until the date I will travel. If I didn’t mention it before, I am 18 years old (19 at the 9th december) and my big goal with this trip is basically to “find myself” and to lay off the big and exhausting thoughts of how I want my future-plans to be and also to forget how horrible my high school years has been (bad grades, depression and hard work) and turn it around into a life change and to experience something new and maybe even “cure” these kind of bad tremendous feelings with the help of this trip. Since I am going solo and for this being a first time trip on my own I will of course be aware that I only need to take care of myself but at the same time I am also looking for new people to come in contact with and to experience a whole new level of interactions as I am in Thailand with alot more people looking for new friends and adventures and in that way I won’t really feel that lonely. But to summarize my problem here, it is basically people expressing negativity and worrying towards my big travel plan like my parents and other closeby relatives, how can I handle their talk without them bringing me down? Also a few tips and support will also be really appreciated :).
        Thanks in advance, Bill

        • Anna says:

          Oh Bill, hang in there! I think I know what you are going through. I went travelling to Thailand on my own for the first time a while back and my friends and family were exactly the same. I was lucky that they didn’t have much time to sour things for me I made a snappy decision, bought a ticket and I was on my way 3 weeks later! I also flew with Emirates, I remember everything on that flight seems awesome, the food, the view, my seat, everything. I was so happy! I was travelling, alone! I felt I was the coolest person in the world, all those naysayers had no idea about any of the excitement that solo travel brings. Solo travellers are the coolest bunch in the world of travellers, so you’re entering the club of some of the world’s most empowered people.
          Listen, you will love it. You seem like a thoughtful chap, and all you need is some common sense in South East Asia, whatever people say it is one of the safest travel destinations in the world.
          In the meantime, if you’re feeling down just read travel blogs, talk to fellow travellers online – like here – read other people’s experiences, write all kinds of lists of what you want to do. Oh, also I usually write a personal diary and write down all the negative thoughts that I”m experiencing, it almost works like that I can just shut them away by writing them down.
          So, in short, keep yourself excited by talking to fellow travellers, reading about your destinations and write down (and shut away) those negative thoughts.
          And if you want to know anything specific just ask here :)
          Very excited for you, you’ll have a brilliant time!

          • Bill says:

            Hi Anna, thanks for your tips and support :)! I will definitely take part of what you said and use it towards the rest of my planning for this trip. As for the negative thoughts I will use your advise and the worrying from parents, I have learned that I have to accept it because it’s just a part of being a parent, caring. For now I’m still working through my last months of high school and of course I am still planning but you make me feel more comfortable now that after you explained that Thailand is more safe then what you think, so overall it seems that what people who haven’t experienced Thailand might have some of their words based on rumors? Also I am wondering, how do you think of my plan on trying to connect with other backpackers while I am Thailand so I don’t make myself feel to lonely? Because I got a feeling that since I am “unexperienced” I might feel a little homesick sometimes :P, but how have you experienced your three weeks by yourself?
            Sincerely, Bill

          • Anna says:

            Hi Bill, I’m glad I could help a little :)
            Connecting backpackers while you there is more like an idea that seems good now – when you’re there, you won’t need it. You’ll meet people, it’ll be very easy. Even if you’re shy – there’s a lot of people travelling on their own in Thailand and even the ones in group are very open minded. And if you like someone, you can decide to travel with them on the spot. And if you don’t like them anymore or want some alone time, you can do that too. The awesome advantages of travelling alone :) I had more than three weeks, I had over 6 for the first time then I had 3 months once later. That was brilliant.

            I didn’t plan, I mean I did but more for fun not for something to follow strictly. I ended up talking to this hippyish guy at one place who recommended this cool island that no one I ever talk to even heard of and I met some really cool people there. Then decided to travel with them for a bit. Then we parted and I was alone. And then met some other people. This is how it goes pretty much.

            Maybe you’ll feel lonely from time to time and you know what? That’s ok, too. That’s the beauty of travelling, you have all these experiences and feelings – the brilliant highs and the not so good days when the weather is bad (not very often in Thailand btw) or you just feel a bit meh, miss your friends, your parents, good food. And maybe you get ill, that could happen too. But these things – bad weather, occasional loneliness, losing stuff or sick days – are minor little things compared to the absolutely amazing feeling you get when you travel alone. New places, amazing beaches, new culture, fantastic tasty food and the people, the locals and the cool traveler types. That’s what’s all about. :)
            When you get lonely just call someone you like or organise an excursion with a travel agent then you’ll definitely meet people. Some islands do pub crawls – you can do those even if you’re not so much of a drinker, you can always meet new people that way. But yeah organised trips are cool and most hotels, hostels and guest houses have tons of brochures of trips you can do in any area in Thailand. Or if not, just go to the nearest travel agent – you can totally trust most of them even though they don’t have computers, they just call up each other and arrange things but it’s surprisingly efficient. Just keep an open mind to new people and it’ll be all right I reckon.
            Thailand is safe – there are bad things happen sometimes but it happens elsewhere too. Just have common sense and it’ll be all right. Don’t get into arguments with dodgy looking tattooed locals. Don’t drink so much you pass out at some strange place. Lock your room and if you’re worry about your stuff buy a Packsafe safety net. Listen to your instincts and you’ll be fine

  7. Robson says:

    Hi earl

    I’m a 37 year old man who’s just come out of ” the relationship ” and has always wanted to see more of the world . I work for myself and could possibly take a month off to go to Asia, but my main concern is always being alone there or possibly even worse always being seen as ” the old dude trying to fit in ” . I’m not trying to be young again, I just want to have a good time and see new things . Is this for me or should I just stick to run of the mill 30somethimg destinations ?

    • Fernanda says:

      What??? U think you’re old at 37? You’re nuts! Get out there, boy.
      You’re never too old to travel, specially at 37+

    • Anna says:

      Nah, you’ll be all right! I travelled to South East Asia a few times and I met people who were much older and still cool. Met people in their 20s having great chats with people in their 40s and 50s. People who travel keep an open mind and age doesn’t matter at all. That’s my experience. Have a brilliant time!

  8. Euan Anderson says:

    Hello, I am new to these forums etc however I am traveling to thailand April 7th 2015 – April 22nd 2015. I have been to thailand once in November 2012 but that was with my friend. Once I arrived I never wanted to leave but I was fortunate enough to have my friend with me. Since I have come back to the UK and almost three years later I am itching to get back to Thailand. The problem? My friend that came with me before can not come so now I face the daunting prospect of traveling to thailand alone! After reading wandering earls article it has inspired me. Although I will only be there for 2 weeks and by some travelers standards that may be looked upon as a short visit for some but for me the feeling of the unknown and the thought of not meeting anyone across the other side of the planet terrifys me! Should I take the leap and board the plane? I can hold a conversation with people but do lack in self confidence….. Hope you can help me. Euan.

    • Andraž says:

      Euan, go for it! :) traveling solo is the best, you will meet tons of cool people and you ‘ll have the freedom to do whatever you want whenever you want :)

      I was in the same situation before i went to my 1st solo trip and im so glad i did it. :)

    • Sarah M says:

      Hey Euan.
      Planning on travelling to Thailand myself early April, hopefully in time for Thai New year.
      This would also be my first full solo travel and I’m lucky enough to have no set return date.
      I will admit, I am ridiculously nervous myself. But by the sounds of it you have nothing to worry about, its just pre-departure jitters.
      If you’ve got any tips on places you remember from last time, please can you let me know.
      You never know, I may see you out there.
      S x

  9. Beverly says:

    My 18 year old daughter is travelling to Thailand with gap year 360 ORGANISATION as a parent im really worried about her safety as ive read bad reports. Can anyone giveme aadvise for her

    • Andraž says:

      There is a lot of solo female travelers in Thailand and they are all having a great time. I also traveled solo in Thailand for two months and it was one awesome experience. Thai people are usually extremely helpful and kind.
      The only thing I didnt like was the Koh Phangan island, locals werent so friendly there and too many drunk people (reason: full moon party) but the party itself is pretty okay. I also had one very bad experience on this island and maybe thats why I dont like it.
      anyway, the only thing you should worry about is that your daughter would not want to come back because she’s gonna have such an awesome time there. ;)

  10. Prajna says:

    I made it.. solo travel! Thanks for the inspiration :)
    I invite you to read my blog :)

  11. Adrian Dunwell says:


    I am 19 years old. I work in IT and earn a reasonable salary, so I am saving to go on my very own solo adventure.
    I am only 19 years old so this may sound weird, but I really do want to go out and explore the world and live with locals of foreign countries. The idea of meeting strangers and travelling with new people all the time is absaloutely thrilling and it would also give me the time to have a spiritual trip.

    I was curious as to what your opinion is on this? Am I too young? Am I financially strong enough? I still get scared at the thought of being on my own, but at the same time I am excited by it!

    Help meeeee :)


    • Wandering Earl says:

      Hey Adrian – That’s very cool that you want to get out there and travel. It’s hard for me to answer your questions though as everyone is different. Are you too young? There are 18 year olds out there who have no problem traveling on their own and there are 50 year olds who don’t like it. It really depends on how you feel…do you feel ready? If you do, then you’ll probably be just fine out there…if you feel like you aren’t quite ready, then maybe you should wait a little while longer. Only you can answer that! As for finances, again, it depends on the traveler…it depends on your travel style, where you want to visit and on and on in order to determine how much money you need. Budget travel in India will cost much less than budget travel in Japan. Mid-range travel in Western Europe will cost more than in Eastern Europe. Once you figure out how you want to travel and where you want to go, you can start to figure out how much money will be required.

    • Madison Hendershot says:


      I just want to say, you are not the only 19 yr old wanting to travel at such a young age. I am as well, and am currently planning a European trip with a friend from school. Because I am a college student, and female, I get scared at thinking about going somewhere new on my own. I’ve only been out of the US one time, and that was to Canada and as a trip with school, so I wasn’t necessarily traveling alone. I believe that it is best to travel at this age, or in our young twenties, because we are still growing, and we are still open to the world around us. It’s not “weird” or strange. It’s a natural feeling to want to learn and to want to meet new people and to experience new cultures. I also believe that feeling scared is natural as well. You’re going out of your comfort zone and trying something new. You are taking a risk and living your own life. I think of traveling on my own this way, if you have other people traveling with you, you don’t get to see the things you want. I’m really into photography, and when I take pictures I don’t get more than one block down the road without taking about 100 photos, or more. If I were to have other people with me I wouldn’t be able to stop and look at all the interesting things that I see, because others don’t see the same thing. I have a different perspective when it comes to taking photos, and when I’m in a new place I like to be alone, so I can experience everything the I want to experience them. So, I believe that if you think as traveling alone in a positive way, and all the great things you will be able to experience and take home to your family, and possibly take them there one day, your feeling of being scared will just melt away and it will make you that much more excited.

      Sorry for the long comment, but I hope this helps. And good luck planning your trip!


  12. Pauline says:

    You should never be afraid to travel alone! Or even worse, to reconsider or cancel your plans because someone ditched you!
    You will make the most beautiful encounters one your way!

  13. James says:


    I’m a British man and I am heading out to the Philippines myself in about two months time, I will be travelling alone but meeting up with a lady when I get there, although it will not be in the capital Manila, so I will be travelling from Manila alone.

    I have no idea what to expect, I have never been outside Europe and have not travelled outside Britain for more than five year’s.

    I’m so nervous but although I face a long journey to get there I am not backing out.

    What can I expect?

    • Andraz says:

      Dont worry. You will have the time of your life. :)

    • A Filipina says:

      Hello. :)
      You may hear a lot of negative things about the Philippines, from the stunted government to the traffic to the ripping-off cabbies, but remember, not everyone’s out to mug you. So let your guard down and enjoy what the country has to offer.
      Cheap yet delish eats, white sandy beaches, and hospitable citizens- what more can you ask for?
      Of course, every place has its share of thieves and conmen- just treat people the way you would like to be treated and they might just do the same.
      Have fun and God bless you on your journey.

  14. Catherine I am an older Australian and September 2013 I was in India for 28 days it was a fantastic experience and well worth going there, But not for a female on her own, Please do not do it alone. there are sections of Indian society that have no respect for females, be warned do not go there alone. Regards George

    • Wandering Earl says:

      I would have to disagree with this one. If you do a quick search online, you’ll find no shortage of examples of females who have traveled to India on their own and who had nothing but positive experiences. I have three close female friends who did just that – one of them is going back for her 3rd solo trip there in 2 years. So I think it has more to do with travel experience and preparation, and making sure you use common sense at all times.

    • neize says:

      Hi George,
      I’m a mature woman planning going to Asia.It will be a solo travel.Do you know something about it? Does it have the same problems as in India? Thanks

    • Catherine says:

      Well I did India alone for 2 weeks then Nepal for another 2 weeks. Traveling alone was the best thing I’ve done EVER for myself including getting married. Ha! This trip, at 50, wasn’t to see things but a more spiritual one for me. I haven’t shown my photos to more than 3 people or really discussed the trip and its meaning with more than 1 close friend. I had plans for the first 4 days in India and that was it. I did find India..uhm..well I experienced India. Jury is still out if I would return. I loved Nepal and did a fantastic 4 day hike which was the climax of my trip. Emotional to say the least. Travel to India. Travel alone. You’ll never be the same after you travel alone. It definitely ignited something within me and I know a different person exists beyond the life I live at home.

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  16. Lin says:

    Mid-fifties and just revving up for solo travel. Booked with a group tour out west US in January, then I hope to keep moving forward and be more independent. My husband is a home-body but I’ve Got To Go!! Any suggestions or correspondence from other ” boomers” would be welcome.

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  18. Brett says:

    Yup Im going to Thailand this Dec 06 for 3 weeks! I’ve done a resort in Cuba by myself…. A bit akward at first but then I met everyone on the resort!

    I think backpacking will be much different and am looking forward to it. Another adventure!

    • Ari says:

      Hey I’m thinking of going Around the same time for 3 weeks but terrified of the idea of being alone. I’ve never traveled alone before but like meeting new people. Just the thought that worst case scenario I’ll actually be alone gives me the chills. You nervous at all?

  19. Tuush says:

    I am 24 year old from South Africa and wanting to travel alone to Thailand in April 2015 to 03 May 2015.

    Not there for long but hoping to do Bangkok, Phuket and Chaing Mai.

    Your blog and comments have reassured me that it’s okay and normal to do so. Tad bit sceptical about backpackers and bnbz so have many friends have requested hotels.

    I really want to make friends and meet new people.

    Any ideas

  20. Ben says:

    Epic blog man!
    its weird how people thousands of miles away and several time zones and some odd years can be so linked *swoons the never ending and expanding and AMAZING synchronicity of the “human existence” (pauses for a metaphysical contemplation)

    so? here I am . a New Zealander about to embark on a mission thru South East Asia (2nd time round- this time solo)

    thought I would add a comment and maybe link with some readers who may be in the same area?

    Bangkok 29/11/14- 03/12/14
    Chiang Mai 04//12/14- 08/12/14
    Pai 08/12/14-12 or 13/1214
    Then maybe further north mae hon son? or chiang rai?
    back to Chiang Mai around 17/12/14
    20/12/14-27/12/14 phnom penh
    28/12/14-02/01/15 koh rong
    back to phnom penh till 04/01/15
    Ho Chi Minh City 04/01/15-11/01/15

    get @ me

  21. Brooks says:

    I’ve traveled to so many places alone (U.S. And abroad) that sometimes I like traveling alone rather than with someone. Simply because I know a few hours after I arrive there will be new faces to meet, from different cultures. Makes the travel very lively for me.

    Even local travel in my area I find friends, family simply are not interested in going to because it pulls them away from their familiar. So, I’m willing to go places alone because I know other people who are at the same place have the same agenda as I do, to see some place, to learn something new.

    Example: next week I have planned a day long hike in the mountains. No one is interested in going. So, it’s O Solo Mio for me. Not afraid as there are other people there and they are hiking to see God’s creation rather than stay inside.

    Earl: I’m glad you brought up this topic.

  22. Steve says:

    I’m 62 and have not traveled much outside the U.S. This Sunday, Oct 5, I leave for the Philippines for two weeks and then Thailand for one week, alone. I feel anxiety. Last month, as a shakedown, I went to the Dominican Republic for a week. Out of the country, but close enough. The DR worked out fine. The Philippines and Thailand are different. They are very far away. And three weeks? I am nervous.

    The tickets are paid for. Plans are set. I will do the trip and feel nervous about doing it I suppose. I’ve been talking about checking out this area of the world for years. Looks like the time is now. Good thing I have some Xanax.

    • Wandering Earl says:

      Hey Steve – Let us know how it goes once you’re back, and I’m sure you’re going to have plenty of positive experiences to talk about!

    • Steve,
      I am almost 65 and have been traveling the world since my early twenties. In between, I married for 36 years, traveled and had three wonderful sons, who all travel now. My wife and I are no longer together, as she did not want to keep traveling.

      This year I have seven countries in Europe, five countries in SE Asia and a couple of countries in South America scheduled. I am also walking the Camino Frances. I am not getting any younger and there is so much left to see in this beautiful world. Have no fear, Thailand and the Philippines are bothering great places. You will have a blast!

  23. Catherine says:

    Thank you for this. I laugh as it is all soo true. I am surfing the net avoiding my hearts desire and to get over to the travel agent to book my trip to India…alone. I don’t know why I fight it, I know its going to happen, just do it and move on to figuring out details.
    Thanks again!

    • Noelle says:

      Im sitting in a cafe in Mexico this evening, feeling anything but alone. At 42 part of me sometimes tries to convince my self that I should leave these adventures to the younger crowd… but No way!
      I meet people everywhere I go. Sometimes I go to a community center or connect with a non profit ,and sometimes, like this, I find a cafe with Wi-Fi, where you are bound to meet other travelers. I pick small, friendly towns and just take it slow.
      Don’t fight it, live it!!
      Life is a beautiful adventure, or a scenic walk of new experiences – whatever you want it to be… go book that flight! And have a great journey!

  24. Andraž says:

    great reading :) lifts spirit as Im also going to thailand for my 1st solo trip… 29th October untill 18th December. me and my wakeboard

    Bangkok (6 nights)
    Ko Phangan (5 nights)
    Ko Tao (6 nights)
    Phuket (1 month)
    Abu Dhabi (2 nights)

    If any1 is also traveling and wants to grab a beer or something: andraz.hudomalj@gmail.com

  25. Danelle says:

    Wow! Super relate! I’m also planning on going alone in Thailand this December and was actually starting to save on a college budget. I also asked some of my friends, one of my friends said yes but unfortunately she can’t travel by december because she still needed to fix her passport. Than I asked a travel agency if I could travel alone and they said that travelling alone is more expensive and the immigration might hold me because i’m still young. I also thought that too since I’m too small for my age so I guess I have to postpone it. And then i came across your post and feel inspired. I might not go in december as planned but maybe in time, maybe before I turn 19. *fingers crossed* so thank you for writing this post. I didn’t thought that someone could EXACTLY relate to my situation right now. I’m starting to think you’re a psychic. Hahaha. Joke. God bless!

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