You’ve heard everyone say it. Shit, I’ve even said it. Everyone should experience traveling alone. Go on a solo trip. Find happiness in being alone. Just go for it, have an eat pray love moment. While I believe in all of this, there’s also a part of me that also says, solo travel can be overrated. And you should definitely be doing BOTH.
Is Solo Travel Worth It?
While traveling solo can be great for learning to be happy and content in your own skin, your own space. And I think learning that being alone is not being lonely is an insanely important lesson to understand. There’s also something that solo travel does not offer.
It can keep you from trying new things.
When you travel solo, while you may be getting outside your comfort zone in terms of sitting at a restaurant alone or just being by yourself. How do you really get outside your comfort zone if you’re just doing all the things YOU like? Never push your boundaries to try an activity outside your comfort zone. Or trying a dish on the menu that doesn’t sound like something you’d usually prefer? I can’t tell you how many times I’ve traveled with friends and did activities I never would’ve dreamed of.
When you travel with other people you usually (hopefully) are trying an activity that wasn’t your idea, or ordering a dish at a restaurant that you wouldn’t have tried. Maybe you explore a different part of a town that you never heard of because someone told your friend to check it out. While it sucks to stray from your own itinerary that you may have had in mind, it does push you to try new things and experiences. Create new memories you were not planning to create.
I had this a-ha moment when I went on a trip to Sedona with some friends.
It was my first time traveling with them and while I’m often the one who plans the bulk of a trip, these gals were in charge. And I sat back and let them do it. When we arrived, we did hikes and trails I never imagined I would do. If I had done that trip solo I would’ve 100% taken the easy way out and just done a leisure hike or two and called it a day. As a matter of fact, I almost bailed on a hike just to be lazy because we already had a really long day. And I’m so glad I didn’t. Because that hike up Cathedral Rock was the most epic thing we did. We had a blast doing it. Made memories for life.
I never would’ve had that experience if I traveled solo.
Don’t get me wrong. If I went to Sedona solo I would’ve had a fabulous time. I would’ve had the most incredible “me” trip of relaxing, strolling around town, good food and early to bed. And there’s nothing wrong with that. Which is why you should do BOTH. But I’m so glad I went with other people so that I can get outside my comfort zone and try activities I never would’ve sought out on my own.
Other Benefits Of Not Traveling Solo
There are also a few other reasons why traveling solo is SO overrated. For one, it’s insanely expensive. Splitting a hotel bill is my most favorite part about traveling with friends. It makes it so much more affordable. Along with splitting taxis and Ubers. It makes a huge difference in the total cost of a trip.
It’s also nice to have someone to eat with so you can try many things on a menu. My favorite part about traveling if you ask me is the food anyway. While dining out you can try many dishes or drinks and not just order one thing. This is my DREAM kind of meal!
And lastly, it’s just nice to have people to experience things with and make those memories. It bonds you. It’s those memorable shared experiences that bond friendships forever. We’ll always laugh about how we slid down Cathedral Rock and almost died that day! Or how we took the wrong turn on a trail that made us laugh at how dumb we were for not seeing the BIG trail sign right in front of our parked car. Those things are more memorable and more enjoyable when you have people to share them with.
But this is still your reminder to travel solo. Because there are incredible benefits of visiting somewhere new (or old) by yourself. This is just your reminder to switch it up. And also make sure you’re exploring new places with new and old friends, too.
PS my tips for traveling with friends so you don’t cause drama!