Traveling alone is one of the most unique and rewarding experiences a person can have, allowing you to explore new destinations without relying on anybody else, meet new people and develop as an individual. That being said, many people are scared by the thought of traveling alone, which can make them fearful to the point of not trying it. This article will look at some of the root causes of this phobia before looking at some ways to negate the adverse effects.
Understanding the fear
By understanding why people fear traveling alone, we can work to address those fears and eventually overcome them. Many of these reasons are rooted in truth or some negative experiences, but they are always workarounds for better future experiences. Whether you’re looking for the best cruise lines or want to explore the far reaches of Asia on your own, knowing the root causes of your fears will be essential.
While there are likely to be more reasons than those below, these are some of the most common and can be overcome with time and patience, self-development and support from others. Remember, you’re not alone in being scared.
Not knowing what could happen, however unlikely, is a big reason for many to avoid traveling alone, even if the likelihood of a negative experience is high. While there is a degree of uncertainty when traveling alone, this is part of the charm and makes it so rewarding, especially when you can have a great time with others in a similar situation.
Understandably, safety is a big reason for people to feel anxious about traveling alone, but by preparing well in advance and taking the appropriate steps, you can be just as safe as you are at home. For solo travelers, especially women, being alone makes you somewhat more vulnerable, but there are steps you can take to negate this risk and ensure you have a great time.
There’s also a fear of being alone that can hit a person no matter where they are. This is often exacerbated in a foreign country because you don’t have easy access to your usual support network. To overcome this fear, ensure that your mobile phone is compatible with your host country and check to ensure you can send and receive messages, putting your mind at rest.
Overcoming the fear
By identifying the causes of feeling alone while traveling, we can work to find solutions that are practical and will put your anxiety to rest. There are many ways that people can overcome their solo traveling fears, and below are just a few ways to accomplish this. Not everything will work for you, and there are many more solutions than what we’ve listed. By trying and seeing what works for you, it’s possible to identify specific actions that will increase the chance of you having a much more enjoyable experience.
If you want to plan a big trip that will push you beyond your comfort zone, but your fear of traveling alone is holding you back, planning a shorter trip first would be wise. It’s a good idea to go on a short trip to another city within your country or state, allowing you to experience what it feels like to be in an unfamiliar place without being utterly cut off from what you’re comfortable with.
Effective preparation and planning are the best ways to become comfortable doing something. When it comes to going on a big trip that’s causing you anxiety, try to create a hypothetical itinerary that you can use to keep you tethered to what you’re happy doing. By being aware of what’s nearby and what you have quick access to, you can immerse yourself in the local area without facing too many unforeseen factors that could cause further stress.
Join group activities
If you want to go on a solo trip but are not ready to be alone for long periods, keep an eye out for events and activities that can be done with others, such as guided tours or day trips organized by a trusted agency. These are great ways to meet people who are also on their own, and you can simultaneously discuss ideas that could make it more enjoyable and make friends.
Embrace solo activities
While group activities are a great way to find your feet abroad, it’s essential to also do things on your own, as this will help you overcome that core fear of being out of your comfort zone. It’s wise to plan solo activities that others do at the same time so that if you begin to feel overwhelmed, there will be people nearby who can help you and encourage you to continue.
Getting over the fear of traveling alone
Overcoming the fear of traveling alone will require patience, understanding and dedication. It’s not something you’ll be able to address immediately and will take some time to become familiar with. By taking the first steps in addressing the underlying factors, you will begin to become more confident. You can do numerous things before and during the solo trip to ease stress, from planning group activities to staying connected with those at home.