Do you know someone who travels solo? Now is the time to debunk the three most common myths about solo travelers and solo traveling:
1. Solo travelers travel for soul searching
I am placing this on top of my list as people think that solo travelers are lost souls that need to find themselves by traveling alone. This may be true for first time solo travelers, but not for people who have traveled alone a couple times. In fact, solo travelers have already found their passion – to travel and explore.
If you know someone who often travel solo, please stop asking them if they will go on a soul searching on their next trip. 🙂
2. Solo travelers are rich and solo traveling is expensive
People often think that traveling is a luxury that only those who are financially blessed can afford. Perhaps, this is due to us being exposed to the media promoting luxury travels. Unfortunately, budget travel destinations are not featured in TV adverts, magazines and billboards. This leave people clueless about the idea “budget travelling”.
People usually think that solo travelers are rich. Traveling solo is expensive is definitely a myth! Traveling definitely require money but solo travelers know how to budget and save as much as they can before and during traveling.
People always ask me where I get the money for travel. Except for the financially free, like you, I also work for money. I have a 9 to 5 file and rank job and is only free during weekends. Since I started solo traveling in 2015, I learned to be more frugal. I rarely buy clothes and promised myself not to buy expensive perfumes and gadgets (these were my guilty pleasures way back). I was able to change my mindset and little by little get used to a simpler and frugal lifestyle. Every time I feel discomfort, I always think of my next solo trip as my motivation. Compared to material possessions, the new travel experiences and their memories last anyways.
If you can’t afford staying in a 5 star beach resort, there will always be an alternative. During my Davao trip, since an overnight stay at Pearl Farm beach resort is way out of my budget. I chose to visit Gumasa in Sarangani instead. It was a long travel from Davao but visiting Gumasa which is dubbed as the little Boracay of Mindanao was worth it!
3. Solo travelers and Solo traveling is sad and boring
People think that solo travelers are sad people and solo traveling is boring. Traveling with your family or friends is fun but there are always restrictions when you go on a trip with a group. Solo travelers enjoy the freedom of decision making. When traveling alone, you are your own guide, you travel at your own pace and you decide on your itinerary. These things make traveling more fun and exciting!
Nothing beats the excitement and adventure of traveling solo in an unfamiliar place where no one knows you. You get to discover the place you are visiting, learn their culture and more importantly you get to know the locals and gain new friends. There is one common thing in all places I’ve traveled solo, locals usually get surprised and upon realizing that I was traveling alone. Being a solo traveler, people get curious at you and you end up having a good conversation with a stranger and a possible lifelong friend.
During my Vigan trip, I was walking alone in the famous Calle Crisologo when a stranger suddenly approached me. He along with his friends invited me for a lunch. While inside the van to Lake Sebu in South Cotabato, I befriended locals right before setting my foot in Lake Sebu. While on the bus to Ifugao, I befriended a Spanish solo traveler and became my Ifugao travel buddy. When I travelled to Tawi-Tawi, I gained friends from the military which also served as our security escort while touring the province.
A photo posted by Ed Puno (@onearmedwanderer) on
To conclude, solo traveling is not for everyone but I would highly recommend it. The next time you see a solo traveler, be happy for that person as he is for sure enjoying and having a time of his life.