A little secret about solo travel? You may be by yourself, but you're never the only singleton. In fact, solo excursions are nearly commonplace; almost 24 percent of travelers took a leisure trip overseas on their own last year, according to the Visa Global Travel Intentions study.
In the last four years, I've explored twelve cities in eight countries on four continents by myself. I've delved into natural wonders, riding a camel under the moonlight through the Sahara Desert, cruising through the panoramic beauty of Norway's fjords, and snorkeling with penguins in the Galapagos Islands. Others experiences were more culturally enriching, like seeing a modern take on Romeo and Juliet at the grandiose Royal Swedish Opera in Stockholm and indulging in afternoon tea at the Crooked House in Windsor. And still others were about the journey itself, like a wellness retreat in Massachusetts where I got lost in a yoga class while watching the sunrise over the Berkshires.
While you may board your flight by yourself, not knowing anyone at your destination naturally forces you to open up to others. In fact, single travelers seem to share an unspoken code, helping one another out (when luggage on a flight to Latin America didn't arrive, for example) and respecting each other's travel habits (my Morocco tour group was already helping me style my food shots before touching their meals by day two).
Whether fueled by a search of self-discovery, recovery from personal trauma, or simply traveling without the hassle of coordinating schedules, budgets, and interests with family and friends, a solo sojourn can be liberating. To soften any turbulence while flying solo, check out these tips and tricks for being savvy on the road alone.