7 Benefits of Traveling Solo

Solo travel is having a major moment, and we’re totally on board with this empowering movement (hello, Explorer Chick was born from solo trips!).

Gone are the days of waiting around for friends or partners to align schedules and travel styles. More and more adventurous souls are breaking free from the “norm” to explore the world entirely on their own terms.

And — although statistics wasn’t our favorite math class back in the day — we can’t deny this one: according to Solo Traveler World, a whopping 64% of all travelers worldwide are women, with 84% of these being solo female travelers!

It’s no surprise this trailblazing trend has taken off in such a big way. When you ditch the travel buddies and go solo, you unlock a realm of invaluable personal growth, uncompromising freedom, and opportunities for authentic self-discovery that simply can’t be matched.

Imagine waking up each morning with the power to construct your day’s itinerary from scratch, tailored entirely to your specific interests and whims. No more settling for “meh” activities or putting the group’s needs first (it’s OK to be selfish every once in a while!).

As a solo traveler, every experience is 100% about pursuing your curiosities to the fullest.

Then there are the countless moments of empowerment that come from conquering new challenges independently – navigating unfamiliar cities, adapting to cultural hurdles, and forging unexpected connections with locals.

With every obstacle you overcome alone, your confidence will soar.

And we haven’t even touched on the incredible self-reflection and identity insights awaiting along your solo journey of exploration! When you strip away travel companions, you’re free to fully immerse in new environments through an unobscured lens. It’s the ultimate chance to reinvent your perspectives and discover new layers of yourself!

So, below we’re rounding up alllllll the benefits of traveling solo to inspire you to take the leap!

Benefits of Solo Travel for Women

Woman holding "Explorer Chick" banner at the summit of Torres Del Paine Towers in Patagonia Chile

1 The Freedom to Explore

When you’re traveling solo, the world is your oyster, baby! No more sticking to a rigid itinerary or compromising on what you really want to do.

Feeling spontaneous? Go for it! Want to spend an entire day getting lost in a city’s winding streets? Do you, boo. The freedom to make all the decisions is one of the biggest perks of flying solo.

Imagine waking up and deciding on a whim to hop on that early train to the next town over. Or maybe you stumble upon a hole-in-the-wall restaurant that looks irresistible, and you can just waltz right in without having to run it by a travel buddy first. That’s the beauty of solo travel – every experience is entirely yours to savor.

And let’s be real, how many times have you had to begrudgingly skip that off-the-beaten-path adventure because your travel partner wasn’t down?

Those days are over! When you’re calling all the shots, you can fully immerse yourself in the local culture, try all the wild activities, and soak up every single moment exactly how you want to. Talk about a sense of freedom and independence that’ll have you feeling like a total badass!

An Explorer Chick woman wearing a backpacking pack while hiking

2 Personal Growth And Development

Traveling solo isn’t just a vacation – it’s a chance for some serious personal growth and empowerment. When you’re out there exploring the world on your own, you’re constantly being pushed out of your comfort zone in the most beautiful way possible.

Think about it – handling travel hiccups, navigating new cities, and immersing yourself in unfamiliar cultures? That takes some serious courage and resilience. But with each challenge you overcome, your confidence grows exponentially. Suddenly, you realize just how capable and independent you truly are.

It’s like leveling up in real life. With every solo adventure, you unlock new skills and gain deeper insights about yourself.

You might discover hidden strengths you never knew existed or reignite long-forgotten passions. And don’t even get us started on the unshakeable sense of empowerment that comes from conquering the world solo-dolo.

These solo travel experiences have a way of sticking with you long after you’ve returned home. Maybe you’ll find yourself feeling more confident in your decision-making abilities or more willing to take calculated risks.

You could develop a newfound appreciation for your own company or simply gain a fresh perspective on life. However, it manifests, one thing’s for sure – you won’t be the same person you were before embarking on your solo journey of self-discovery!

An Explorer Chick woman smiles on a guided trip to Jordan and Petra

3 Connecting With Locals And Making Friends

As a solo traveler, you’re like a magnet for incredible human connections. Think about it – you’re way more approachable flying solo than when you’re entrenched in your little travel squad. Locals and fellow adventurers can actually talk to you without feeling like they’re interrupting a group dynamic.

This opens up so many doors for spontaneous conversations, insider tips, and even making new friends from all around the globe. You might strike up a chat with a local at a neighborhood bar and end up being invited into their home for an authentic home-cooked meal!

Or you could meet a fellow solo traveler at your hostel, instantly hit it off, and decide to explore the city together for a few days.

Some of the most meaningful travel memories come from these serendipitous connections. They give you a rare glimpse into different cultures and lifestyles you’d never get to experience traveling any other way. Plus, making new friends means having future couches to crash on during your next adventure!

The connections you make while traveling solo have a beautiful way of transcending languages and borders. You might not be able to perfectly communicate, but you’ll find that a warm smile and an open heart can bridge any gaps.

Who knows, you could end up gaining new lifelong friends scattered all around the world. Now that’s a pretty epic perk of flying solo if you ask us!

An Explorer Chick woman stands on the shore of Maine looking over the water

4 Flexibility and Adaptibility

When you’re calling all the shots on your solo adventure, you’re basically signing yourself up for a hardcore training session in adaptability.

No travel buddies to rely on means it’s all on you to navigate any curve balls that come your way. Missed train? No biggie, you’ll figure out an alternative route. Accommodations not quite what you expected? Time to get resourceful and find a plan B.

This constant problem-solving builds some straight-up superhero levels of flexibility and resilience. You learn to roll with the punches and think on your feet like a total pro.

Suddenly, minor obstacles that might normally ruin a trip become mere inconveniences that you handle with ease. Delayed flight? You’ve got this. Got a little lost on the way to that famous landmark? Stay calm and ask for directions like a boss.

The more you adapt to situations outside your control, the more confidence you’ll gain in your ability to tackle anything thrown your way. Who knew a few travel snafus could turn you into such a badass?

It’s like navigating life’s many twists and turns, but on an accelerated, abroad-tastic adventure scale. By the time you return home to your everyday life, you’ll be wondering what other curve balls the universe can possibly throw at you.

Smooth transitions and quick thinking will have become second nature, giving you an incredible foundation of flexibility to thrive in any situation. Talk about a life skill you can flex!

A woman wearing a helmet on a climbing trip

5 Empowerment Through Independent Exploration

As a woman, the act of navigating new destinations entirely on your own is an incredibly empowering experience. It’s a chance to boldly step outside the confines of societal expectations and prove to yourself that you’ve got this.

From deciphering local transit to finding your way around, each small victory builds unshakeable confidence in your abilities. With every solo journey, you’re sending a powerful message to the world (and yourself) about what a woman is truly capable of accomplishing.

Two Explorer Chick women hiking in windy conditions wearing buffs and hiking gear

6 New Connections and Shared Perspectives

When you’re exploring the world solo as a woman, you open yourself up to connecting with other intrepid female travelers in a unique way. Suddenly, you have an instant bond over your shared courage to take on adventures independently.

These new friends can provide an incredible support system full of empowering perspectives during your journey. Not to mention, relationships formed through such profound shared experiences often evolve into lifelong friendships.

An explorer chick woman with her arms stretched out at the front of a boat

7 Shattering Limitations (And Limiting Beliefs)

For too long, there’s been an unfair stigma around women traveling alone. But every female solo traveler is a pioneer defying those misguided notions. You’re proving that the world is yours to explore without barriers or limitations based on gender.

With every new stamp in your passport, you’re helping blaze a trail for equal travel opportunities while expanding your own worldview far beyond any preconceived boundaries. That’s some serious girl power right there.

Choosing the Best Destinations for Solo Travel

When you’re venturing out into the world on your own, you want to pick destinations that are going to make your solo adventure as enjoyable and stress-free as possible. Here are some of the top countries that tick all the boxes for an epic solo travel experience:

Scotland

With its stunning landscapes, rich history, and famously friendly locals, Scotland is a solo traveler’s dream. From the bustling cities of Edinburgh and Glasgow to the otherworldly Isle of Skye, there’s no shortage of beauty and culture to immerse yourself in.

The small-town vibes make it easy to strike up conversations with locals at pubs. And with efficient public transportation, you can explore the highlands and islands with ease. Scotland’s overall safety ratings are also a major plus for solo explorers.

Hebridean Way in Scotland

Utah

Utah’s national parks offer a solo traveler’s paradise with their stunning landscapes and diverse natural wonders. From the iconic arches of Arches National Park to the rugged canyons of Zion, there’s endless beauty to explore. The well-marked trails and visitor centers make it easy to navigate as a solo female hiker, while the solitude of the wilderness provides moments of reflection and connection with nature.

*Discover more amazing US destinations for solo women.

An Explorer Chick poses in Zion National Park while on a women's guided hiking trip

 

Iceland

For the intrepid solo traveler, Iceland is pretty much a magical wonderland. This small island nation is overflowing with jaw-dropping natural scenery from the Blue Lagoon to mighty glaciers and waterfalls galore. It’s a heaven for pictures!

Despite its remote location, Iceland ranks extremely high for safety and even has a Hitchhiker’s Highway built exclusively for budget solo travelers to easily get rides. The gender-equal society and English proficiency also make it an appealing solo destination.

A woman sits on a glacier rock in Iceland

 

Croatia

With its stunning Adriatic coastline, remarkable history, and proven reputation for safety, Croatia is a dream for female solo travelers in particular. From wandering the ancient walled city of Dubrovnik to sailing the idyllic islands, there’s adventure around every corner.

The country’s well-trodden backpacking trail has created an infrastructure perfectly suited for meeting up with fellow solo explorers. Not to mention, the Croatian locals are known for treating visitors like family.

*Discover more amazing European destinations for solo women.

An Explorer Chick on a Cycling trip in Croatia

More Solo Traveler Destinations

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Budget-Friendly Accommodation Options

Solo travel doesn’t have to break the bank! Here are some budget-friendly accommodation options that are perfect for solo travelers:

Hostels

 

Hostels are a great option for solo travelers looking to meet new people and save money. Hostels offer dorm rooms with bunk beds, which can be very affordable if you’re looking to cut costs. Hostels also usually have a common area for travelers to hang out and meet each other and many offer social activities and guided excursions.

But hot tip for those who shudder at the thought of sleeping in a room full of strangers (like us… we’re not 22 anymore, unfortunately). Most hostels also have private rooms available, which are a good option for solo travelers who want a bit more privacy but still want to enjoy the social atmosphere of a hostel.

a 6 bed hostel dorm with curtains shut on most beds
Hostel dorms are great for budget travelers, but our hot tip is to stay in a private hostel room 😉

Guesthouses

 

Guesthouses are a smaller, more intimate alternative to hotels. They are often family-run and offer a more local experience. They sometimes include meals and your hosts are likely to be super familiar with the area and can help you book tours, transportation, and more. We love staying at small guesthouses when solo traveling because the hosts are usually super kind and will keep an eye out for you.

A king bed in a guesthouse

Here are some additional tips for finding budget-friendly accommodation as a solo traveler:

  • Consider the location: Staying in a hostel or guesthouse in a less touristy area can be significantly cheaper than staying in the city center.
  • Book in advance: Especially during peak season, hostels and guesthouses can fill up quickly. Booking your accommodation in advance can help you ensure you get a bed and avoid paying more for a last-minute booking.
  • Look for deals and discounts: Many hostels and guesthouses offer discounts for solo travelers or for longer stays. Be sure to check the website or ask about any deals that may be available.

Overcoming Challenges and Building Resilience

Let’s be real – solo travel isn’t always a non-stop thrill ride of exploring and meeting new people. There will be challenging moments when you’re confronted with loneliness, confusing situations, or even brushes with culture shock.

But like all the best personal growth opportunities, it’s about embracing those tough moments and using them to build one’s resilience.

Maybe you get hit with a pang of homesickness settling in at your new Airbnb. Or perhaps you temporarily misplace that important travel document and have a mini meltdown. When you’re on your own, those feelings can be amplified tenfold without a travel partner to commiserate with.

But overcoming hurdles like these is where the real personal growth happens. It’s a chance to cultivate some serious self-reliance and mental toughness. With time, you’ll reap all the benefits of traveling alone!

You learn to soothe your own worries, problem-solve efficiently, and push through moments of discomfort. With each challenge conquered, your confidence soars.

By the end of your solo adventure, you’ll emerge as a goddamn phoenix – resilient, independent, and brimming with self-assurance about your ability to handle literally anything. That newfound inner strength is something you’ll be able to draw upon for the rest of your life’s journey.

A woman hiking in Zion National Park on an Explorer Chick guided women's hiking trip in Utah

Safety Tips for Solo Travelers

While solo travel is an incredibly empowering experience, it’s always wise to prioritize your personal safety.

Here are a few important safety tips to keep in mind:

Trust Your Instincts

 

Listening to your intuition is crucial while traveling solo. If something feels off or uncomfortable, don’t hesitate to remove yourself from the situation promptly.

 

Stay Safe at Night

 

Especially in unfamiliar places, avoid walking alone after dark. Opt for well-lit and populated areas, or use trusted transportation methods like Uber or sanctioned cabs.

 

Share Your Plans

 

Keep loved ones informed about your itinerary and check in regularly. Sharing your real-time location can provide an extra layer of security, using apps like Find My Friends or Google Maps.

 

Secure Important Documents

 

Make photocopies of essential documents and IDs, storing them separately from the originals. This ensures you have backup information in case of loss or theft.

Use Official Transportation

 

When it comes to getting around, rely on authorized taxis from designated ranks or reputable rideshare services. Avoid accepting rides from unofficial sources to prioritize your safety.

 

Stay Vigilant

 

Maintain awareness of your surroundings at all times. Being observant can help you identify potential risks and react accordingly to ensure your safety while traveling solo. Learn basic self-defense to build your confidence.

A woman hikes on an Explorer Chick trip

Embark On A Life-Changing Solo Travel Experience

At the end of the day, solo travel is one of the most rewarding acts of self-love and personal growth you could ever gift yourself. From the unparalleled freedom to the deep connections formed, the benefits of solo travel are simply too empowering to ignore.

Just think about it – how often do you get to kick ass, take names, and live entirely on your own terms without making a single compromise? When you’re traversing the world as a badass solo traveler, every single experience is 100% about following your curiosities and desires to the fullest.

Along the way, you’ll cultivate resilience by conquering unexpected challenges head-on. You’ll gain confidence from navigating the unknown.

You’ll shatter personal limitations and expand your horizons in ways you never imagined possible. And who knows, you may even forge some incredibly special bonds with locals and fellow adventurers. The benefits of traveling solo are endless. 

The personal transformation awaiting you through solo travel is profound and unmatched. You’ll return home with a kaleidoscope of perspective-shifting moments, a suit of armor made of courage and self-reliance, and a lust for life that can only come from taking the road less traveled by yourself.

So what are you waiting for? The world is your oyster, solo travel squad! Embrace that undeniable calling for adventure and hit the road to seek out all the magic, growth, and empowerment this life has to offer. Craft your own incredible solo travel story – you won’t regret it.

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