We travel. It’s what we do. It’s how we learn long after we leave the classroom. It’s what we do when we need time off. And for us Brits, it’s what we do when we need more than two days of sun. But why is there still such a stigma around being a solo traveller, especially when that person is a female?
Being A Female Solo Traveller
Here’s the thing. Back in the day when our lives weren’t published on social media, the whole travel thing was a very personal experience. Nothing was exposed, so no one really knew what to expect. Now, we have review websites, blogs and Instagram to tell us every gritty detail, every bad experience, every #wanderlust moment.
So, yes, back in the day going out into the big bad world by yourself was a scary thought, and so the “female solo traveller” label became a trophy almost. How many us growing up would think “wow, you’re so awesome and brave” when someone older told us about backpacking across Australia? It became something to idolise. But honestly, has been a female solo traveller ever gotten you anything? Has it made a decision better? All the title does is make you, the traveller, think twice about certain things. Should I visit that place? Maybe a women only hostel is better. Or is a hotel more secure? If you focus on the fact you’re a woman and travelling alone, your whole trip will become a series of angst and insecurities.
I feel like it’s more of a marketing term these days than anything else.
You’re Simply Just A Traveller
My friends and I are wayfarers. We go away by ourselves all the time. One of us spent a year in Salzburg working as a nanny, another at an orphanage in India. Between us, we’ve travelled to Bali, Jordan, all of Europe and some of South America on solo adventures. We’ve taken planes, night trains and coaches all over the world. The fact that we were by ourselves didn’t even impact on our trips. It just meant we needed to pack a selfie stick.
Obviously, there are those places that can be intimidating. In Cuba and Marrakesh, for example, every male will say hello to you, but that’s as far as it will go. Honestly speaking, it’s more annoying than concerning. If you want to get really realistic, the whole world is a dangerous place now for both men and women. So just take that trip you’ve been meaning to take.
Of course, I’m nearly thirty years old, and I travel for a living, so I have confidence in what I’m saying. For those who are much younger and planning your first trip by yourself, there’s going to be that element of uncertainty so start with the ‘safer’ places if you prefer. The Blonde Abroad is an amazing blog with plenty advice for all categories of travellers. Or if you are ready to take the plunge, grab some inspiration here. Just remember to research the local customs and religious holidays before visiting.