If you’re a woman and you plan to go solo for travel, what are the things you have to consider?
Recently, I took a two weeks time off. Two weeks of vacation with no plans, no itineraries and no friends and siblings with me. Two weeks of my first-time solo travel that made so much impact to me. Before I share my whole travel in the comings weeks, I’d like to share some tips for the first time solo traveler. These are the things that I’ve learned during my two weeks time off.
1. Prepared for the unexpected – this is the first thing I had to face on the first day of my travel. You always have to allow ample time going to the airport to catch your flight. I say this not only because it’s important but it’s a must. My flight going to Boracay was supposed to be at 2:55PM at terminal 4 of NAIA, however, it was canceled an hour earlier. I was worried because I’ve heard a lot of canceled flights that day. I asked the person at the counter and gladly, our flight was moved at 4 o’clock and will be transferred via airport bus to terminal 3. If I didn’t come early, I might miss the announcement and not catch my flight.
2. Bring some medicines with you – in my case I have to bring paracetamol for a headache and antihistamine for my allergic rhinitis. It’s better you have it in your bag so that when you get a migraine and allergies, you are prepared. Not all the time you can find a drug store nearby.
3. Drink moderately – yes, you read it. Drink moderately, drink enough just to have fun but please don’t drink too much that you crawl to the ground and can’t carry yourself back to the hotel. Remember, you’re alone… You don’t have your friends and siblings with you. You can’t get wasted unless you want a stranger to take advantage of you. I met friends in my travel, however, I make sure that though I party and have fun at night, I can still handle myself and go back to my hotel safely. Know your alcohol limits and take care of yourself.
4. Smile and be friendly – I’m friendly yet I look snobbish. The initial reaction of people when they first met me, are always the same…that I’m snobbish and not approachable. However, when they get comfortable with me, they soon realize that I’m friendly, very patient and easy to be with. Still, it’s a good thing cause I met friends from two weeks travel and I enjoyed my vacation with new people. Turn strangers into friends. You’ll learn from the local and foreign people. It’s amazing how these people differ from you. They have a different culture, opinions, and views in life. I met a group of Filipino-Chinese people, heard their stories and I’ve been with them for my whole trip in Coron. I met hardworking women from Hongkong and realized how determined Filipina women in pursuing their dreams. No matter how hard it is, they will push themselves and never give up.
5. Pack light – women have the tendency to over pack their luggage especially that we wear different kinds of clothes. My advice is to plan ahead your daily outfit and make a list. In this way, you can eliminate the unnecessary clothes from your luggage. I bring a nice coat/cardigan and pants that I can easily match with the rest of my outfits. A nice dress for dinner/party and swimwear shouldn’t be forgotten.
6. Bring extra cash – though you may have a complete budget plan and a list of all your expenses, it’s still necessary to bring extra cash in case of unexpected expenses and emergency. Examples of these expenses are rebooking for your flight and if you need to check in your luggage when it exceeded the hand carry luggage limit.
7. Be wise and smart traveler – being local and foreign tourists have no difference, both can be taken advantage by the people who offer services and sell products. One good advice before you buy a product and get tour services is to ask and compare the prices from the different vendors and operators. Don’t book a tour or activity without asking for reviews and asking the prices from other tour operators.
8. Bring gadgets and extra batteries – we all want to capture those precious moments of our travel and in order to do that, we must bring the proper gadgets and batteries for our phone and cameras. Take as many photos as you like as you can share these with your family and friends.
9. Bring a book/listen to the audiobook – before I get up every morning during my two weeks travel, I ensure that I read/listen to book/audio book. Positive books will boost your optimism and set a good tone for your day. This will not only boost self-esteem but makes one inspired to be productive and have a meaningful day.
10. Enjoy the moment – during my travel, I know I enjoyed so much because I let myself be like a child. I let go of my worries, anxiety and my fears. I let go of myself and let the moment get into my system. I walk barefoot on the long stretch of the beach, pick a stone and throw it on the water, pick a shell, swim, and snorkel, climb a mountain, dance at the bar, eat what I’m craving and feel the warmth of the sun on my tanned skin.
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Let me know if you have additional tips we can add from the list. I would be happy to hear from you guys 🙂