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Stepping outside of the box

Travelling alone
11 years ago, October 8th 2007 No: 1 Msg: #20594  
Hello all, im after a few opions, a little bit of advice.

Im a 24 year old girl who is dying to actually do something with her life. I would really like to go travelling for about 6 months to the usual places people go Thailand, Oz, New Zealand etc but i have a reservations. Obviously im concerned about giving up my career & leaving all of the people that i love behind but the main issue i have about going is that fact that i would be going alone!!!! (very scary for me as i do usually require adult supervision at all times as i am so clumsy!! he he) i know that there are loads of people that go on their own & i just wonder how they have got on & if anyone has any advise or tips for me as i really dont know where to begin with things!

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11 years ago, October 8th 2007 No: 2 Msg: #20595  
Hello Gemba 😊

I am 38 and have been travelling on and off, since I was 19.
I went to most of the places by myself.
Dont worry, u will meet lots of people.
About your career, dont worry about that either.
I traveled, got a few qualifications, worked for a few companies, have a child and own an appartment.
There is not law saying u have to choose between travelling and a career or other things. U just many not be able to do all simulatneously, unless u are lucky.

Mel Reply to this

11 years ago, October 8th 2007 No: 3 Msg: #20598  
B Posts: 11.5K
Hi Gemma,

Welcome to TravelBlog.
My advise would be to start saving and start planning! :-) Language is not going to be a problem in the countries you mentioned in your post, but even if you do go elsewhere, having to get things done despite language barriers adds to the achievement. As Mel said you will meet heaps of people, but consider the option of organised group travel if being on your own is a concern.
Keeping in touch with people back home is very easy, and think how jealous they'll be reading your blog entries! Reply to this

11 years ago, October 8th 2007 No: 4 Msg: #20608  
Gemma, I too am planning on travelling alone next year, to Japan, Oz and Nz for 6 months...and yes the thought of it is equally exhilarating and terrifying!!! It is something I really want to do though, so even though the prospect of being alone for so long is so very daunting I know that I will regret it forever if I don't do it now, when I can.

I do have a confession to make, however..I was so very nervous at travelling to Japan alone that I managed to goad a fellow friend into travelling there with me..if you are really feeling the nerves perhaps tackle a friend to see if they will accompany you to a few places. I have also been making contact with everyone and anyone I know from these countries, to see a few friendly faces along the way really reassures me. So perhaps I won't be alone quite as much as I thought I would...

Big advice would be to start saving the pennies!!!

I would also recommend tackling any problems or anxieties you have straight away, this place is perfect for doing this! For example, I managed to get in a right old tizz about going to New Zealand in the winter, thinking this is completely the wrong time to be doing it, but after a few messages back from people in the travel forums I feel confident I am making the right decision.

You won't regret doing it, and you WILL meet a ton of amazing people along the way, I am sure of this. Good Luck!!

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11 years ago, October 9th 2007 No: 5 Msg: #20637  
Hey hey! i'm 23 and I have also been dying for a long time to go travelling and waiting for someone to do it with has been the biggest factor. in the end i got tried of waiting and i'm off for a 10month stint in march, all on my own! (v. terrifying as the guys at work also tell me i regularly need adult supervision but hey ho! right in at the deep end!)

My sister went last year and she said that you meet more people while you're on your own and she wouldnt have done it any other way. Although i hate to admit it, I think she might be right about this and although i am weeing myself at the thought i'm also incredibly excited.

Most people go east to west i.e. asia, oz, NZ (i'm slightly backwards and therefore doing it the opposite way, canada to asia!)I suggest thoroughly researching where you want to go (this site is definately a good place to start!) and really start the whole saving money thing but in the end you just have to bite the bullet and book the ticket! it's not as scary as you think and loads of people do it on their tod. hope this helps! Al. Reply to this

11 years ago, October 9th 2007 No: 6 Msg: #20659  
Thanks very much for all of your replies they are all really comforting & have definately made me think that i need to do this for myself, as scary as it might be it seems like there will be loads of people in exactly the same position & i should be brave & take the jump!

i wish you all the best in all of your travels & hey might even bump into a couple of you on my way!! :-)

thanks again xx Reply to this

11 years ago, October 9th 2007 No: 7 Msg: #20660  
Hi Gemba,
I am currently into my 5th month of travelling the world alone. It is a daunting prospect at first, but once you are on the road, you will meet lots of other people travelling alone. If this is your first time, then I would start off in a country that is fairly well trodden by travellers, to help you meet lots of people easily and boost your confidence levels (eg flying into Thailand, Peru or Australia).

Also, one of the best ways to meet people is though hostels that you stay in. If you are using lonely planet, try to pick hostels that have a communal lounge/kitchen/rooftop terrace. This is a great and easy way to meet people. But you will also meet people on trains, at bus stops, in bars etc. If you see another traveller alone, just pluck up the courage and speak to them! Everyone are always friendly, and many people will be in the same boat as you, travelling alone

good luck!

Pete (Lobster Cheeks) Reply to this

11 years ago, October 10th 2007 No: 8 Msg: #20710  
Hi Pete!

thanks for your reply, i was thinking of going to Thailand first of all & possibly doing a tour through Intrepid, have you heard of those tours? do you know if they are good??

I havent had a look at lonely planet yet but i have heard it mentioned a few times whilst looking through this web site so think i will def have to look into that.

your are right tho i will have to not be to shy & introduce myself to people as they are more then likely in the same position to me. How are your travels going? have you been to any places that you would recommend as a must see? Reply to this

11 years ago, October 10th 2007 No: 9 Msg: #20711  
Hi Pete!

thanks for your reply, i was thinking of doing a tour in Thailand first through Intrepid, have you heard of that company? do you know if they are any good??

I havent looked into lonely planet yet but have heard it mentioned a few times on this site so think i should def investigate it. Your right though i think i will just need to be brave & speak to people insead of being shy as there are probably loads of people in my position.

Hows it going on your travels? is there any places that you would def advise seeing? Reply to this

11 years ago, October 10th 2007 No: 10 Msg: #20712  
sorry for the 2 messages my computer was having a funny 5 minutes! :-) Reply to this

11 years ago, October 11th 2007 No: 11 Msg: #20728  
I have never used Intrepid, but I have heard from a few people that they are very good. I have used a company before called Dragoman, which i can recommend. They are slighty more expensive than other companies, but very good. Although my advice would be to do Thailand independently. It is very well set up for travellers and is a well trodden tourist route. But you could always use Intrepid for another country, where independent travel might be a bit tougher

and my travels are going well, thank you! I have seen so many fantastic things it is hard to recommend any in particular, although my favourite countries have been Laos, Bolivia and New Zealand Reply to this

11 years ago, October 12th 2007 No: 12 Msg: #20791  
hi gemba, i just got home from a year on the road in japan, oz and south america, alone. i cant reccommend it highly enough, dont be a pussy, youre in the best possible place to do this - young, fit, strong, and free of committments (you can always go back to work after). just bugger off now, seize the day, do it while youre into the concept, and you wont look back. a lot of people (parents, friends etc) and travel guides often make so much fuss over girls travelling alone. thats all bullshit. so long as you take the usual precautions, listen to your instincts and choose any companions carefully, then you will be fine. say yes to every opportunity for a new experience on the way, and get out of the rules and regulations that normal daily life puts on you. dont be scared! you will find that there are tons of girls travelling alone, of all ages too - especially in oz, nz and i think asia - and you dont have to be alone when you choose not to. you can always hook up with other travellers. sometimes being a lone girl is a definite advantage - some locals will be curious about this and want to help you out, and be protective, and it means youve got the freedom to join people as you choose without checking with your travelling partner first. sometimes its a conversation starter.
i knew no japanese and no spanish when i started, but i picked up spanish quickly by practising with locals and stuff like buying bus tickets, ordering food, asking about hostels... you'll be fine.
mel (onehorsetown-loaferville)
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11 years ago, October 13th 2007 No: 13 Msg: #20841  
Hi Gemba, go for it. I'm planning on doing the same, the job I recently went for didn't work ok, so instead of planning to go early 2009 I'm gonna go v early 2008 provided I can decide where to go and plan everything in time. No idea how long that will take, or how much money I need and whether I'm gonna work, decisions decisions! Planning on 4 - 6 months, oz, NZ and Thailand. I'm 28 and most of friends want to go but are so skint and I can't keep waiting otherwise I'll never go and now is a good time.

So good luck to everyone doing the same, you only live once. x Reply to this

11 years ago, October 18th 2007 No: 14 Msg: #21084  
Hey - who put this box there in the first place?! There's no box, there's no limit! I'm 29 now - but have been traveling the world alone - every now and then meeting friends from home along the way - since I was 21.

This time I'm travelling indefinitely. Alone. The thing is, you're never really alone. Far from it. Constantly surrounded by people in buses, trains, dorm rooms, bars, tourist attractions - in fact, sometimes you'll crave some time alone!! It's a brilliant way to make new friends, try things that you wouldn't normally dare, meet the locals... Both Pete and Mel have some good tips about meeting people, but I'm sure you won't find it a problem. Gemma - you'll have the time of your life, guaranteed!

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11 years ago, October 22nd 2007 No: 15 Msg: #21296  
B Posts: 1
I agree wih you Ellen Around The World - there is no limit. I'm 50 years old and am travelling on my own - just because I now find myself "single" is no reason not to explore new horizons.

I have been travelling for 4 weeks and due to go home next week but this trip had definitely given me an appetite to "see the world" !

Go for it Gemba - broaden your horizons and your perspective on life !! Enjoy :-) Reply to this

11 years ago, October 25th 2007 No: 16 Msg: #21470  
Hi Gemba,
I'm a mate of Pete's (LobsterCheeks). I'm travelling too, but to different places to Pete, so also on my own. I'm away for at least 12 months (I'm half way through) and was slightly worried about travelling alone before leaving, but once I got on the plane I was too excited to worry. I've met plenty of lovely people on my way round so far.
I started in Nepal, which must rate as one of the friendliest countries in the world. Thailand's a good place to start though, especially if you've not been to Asia before.
Anyway, if you really don't enjoy travelling, you can always just head back home knowing you gave it a shot. But I reckon you'll love it.
Good luck.
Chris Reply to this

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