It Starts With Coffee

5 Tips For Traveling Alone

Travel · October 25, 2016

This post may contain affiliate links. See disclosure policy for more details.

I love to travel. I have for as long as I can remember. When I was growing up I would start packing days and days before we left for a trip. I was fortunate enough to go on a lot of trips with my school in high school to places like Europe and New York. And through college I visited friends all over the country. I have also traveled alone more times than I can count. I love traveling alone, but if you’ve never done it, it can be scary. I have 5 tips for traveling alone that I feel you may want to read if you are planning a vacation alone anytime soon!


5 Tips For Traveling Alone

Tip 1: Do your research. Before any trip, no matter if I am traveling alone or with someone else, I do a TON of research. I find places in the area I may go to a lot (bank, Starbucks, drug store). I also figure out where I will be going to explore and how I am going to get there. Will I take a cab? Uber? Public transportation? Walk? Rent a car? So many options. If you research ahead of time it’s a lot easier! I use Waze a lot no matter what city I am in. It’s so helpful and updates by the minute for best routes. It’s also helpful to know where something like an urgent care might be. Once on a trip to LA I really hurt my neck and needed to see a Dr. It was such a pain not knowing where to go.

Tip 2: Let people know where you are. Even living in Dallas if I am going somewhere alone, my husband and my mom always know where I am going to be. You just never know what could happen. Another thing you can do is turn on “Find My Phone” on iPhones (or on Android using Android Device Manager). That way if someone is worried about you they could login and see where you are.

Tip 3: Carry mace: I know this seems silly, but ladies protect yourself. I carry mace on my keys so I always have it. I also travel with it. When you fly you will have to put it in a ziplock bag and check it in your suitcase as you can’t go through security with it. But once you are in a new city take it with you.

Tip 4: Don’t look lost. When I think of what a tourist looks like, I think of Joey from friends in the episodes in London where he keeps saying he needs to get inside the map. He looks lost. He looks like he doesn’t belong. Don’t be like Joey! If you look like you belong, people don’t bother you. If you look like you are lost, you are a target.

Tip 5: Keep your eyes open. Walking around with headphones in is a bad idea. Walking around staring at your phone is a bad idea. Different cities have crazy drivers, people who can grab wallets and purses etc. Keep your eyes open and pay attention to what is happening around you. Keep your phone near you, especially on public transportation where people can grab it and run.

I hope you found these 5 tips for traveling alone helpful. I know it can seem scary to plan a trip by yourself but I highly recommend it if you have never done it.

What is your best tip for traveling alone?

  • Join the Conversation
  • Share
  • Subscribe
  • 40 thoughts on “5 Tips For Traveling Alone

    1. Robertson

      Do some advance planning. You don’t need a detailed plan but you should know, for the first night at least, where you’re going to stay. Book your hostel before you leave.

    2. Samantha

      Great tips! I always carry a thing of mace with me when I go jogging, but I think it’s about time it goes in purse with me, too! And I love planning ahead and finding maps. It’s not very often I get to go anywhere alone, but I feel like Professor Moody – “constant vigilance!” 🙂

    3. Laura

      I LOVE travelling alone. People think I’m nuts but I love getting the chance to choose my own agenda when I travel. Your tips are really good, ESPECIALLY don’t get lost.

      I always have my passport, a copy of my passport in my suitcase AND I leave a copy at home either with my parents or boyfriend, in the event that I should lose mine it’s much easier to replace with these copies on hand at home and where you are.

      Also: Stay in hostels! There’s plenty of safe options as well as all girl hostels if you feel more comfortable that way. You’ll meet new people who will be happy to grab a drink with you, or can offer you tips on things to see while you’re in town!

      Laura @

    4. GiGi Eats

      I do love traveling alone, because you can do things on your own schedule – however… After just coming back from Greece & Italy… I don’t think I could have or would have wanted to do that alone AT ALL. Sometimes 2 brains are WAY BETTER than one!

    5. Ginger Marie

      These are so true! These are actually true for anyone at any time, travelling or not! I sooo used to be that naive girl walking around asking strangers questions about the city. So trusting haha. Even here in Dallas I may do that sometimes but I think I’m finally starting to look like I live here and not like some newb.

    6. Julie

      Great advice. Good reminder to not look like a tourist in order to stay safe. I’ve never traveled alone but when I eventually do I’ll keep these things in mind.

    7. Bria | Tendril Wild Blog

      These are all solid tips! Especially the “don’t look lost”. I gotta say, if I’m new to an area and want to seem confident, I usually have my “resting bitch face” on. Lol

      Also, letting people know where you are/your itinerary is SO important. It may seem fun to just jet-set off spontaneously, but it’s such a good feeling when other people are aware of your travel plans, just in case.

    8. Anya Perry

      Your post reminded how much I loved traveling alone. I do less often since I got married, and with a guy next to you comes the security. Need to get some pepper spray for an upcoming trip to Russia though. My country is notorious for weird people in the streets lol

    9. Valerie

      Good advice but I have one follow-up tip – make sure mace is legal wherever you’re traveling. MANY countries consider it against the law to carry mace, and you can be detained or ticketed for it! 🙁

    10. Megan Gonzalez

      These are great tips! Another one is always keep you hand on your purse–if your hand is on it, it’s harder to get in it. Oh, and if you’re flying (and you’re not one of those people who can fall asleep on a dime) bring plenty of stuff to do. I’ve never carried mace, but it’s not a bad idea–though if you’re traveling to another country, make sure it’s legal to carry it!

    11. Amanda Rinehart

      I absolutely love traveling too, but I have never gone anywhere significant by myself. Is it really as fun as going with someone?! I feel like I would be lonely. haha! But then again, it would be pretty cool to go wherever YOU wanted and at your own pace.

    12. Audrey

      I love these tips!! I travel often with out the family and it is so important to be aware of your surroundings especially when traveling alone.

    13. Divya @ Eat Teach Blog

      These are extremely helpful tips! I have actually never traveled alone to another country because I’m afraid to be in a country where I can’t speak the language and try to get around. I feel worried about what would happen to me. But it’s also something that I would love to be able to do!

    14. Kiara Catanzaro

      Lovely tips for traveling solo! As someone who has traveled Europe solo for study abroad, etc…you’ve covered some great points in your list!

    15. CJ from Thirty30Courtney

      Totally agree about not looking lost. It was so annoying to me and I wanted to save everybody in Europe. Wearing obvious t-shirts and having maps opened twirling around in the middle of a bustling city does NOT help your case.

    16. Elizabeth Ann

      These tips are great! When I am alone somewhere I never put earbuds in. It completely dulls my senses. And that was the first thing I told my sister who went off to college. You never know who is around you. Thanks for putting this list together. It’s important info for ladies!

    17. kara

      These are all great tips. I am a big researcher if I am traveling to a new city and especially if I am alone so I really like that you included that tip.

    18. Rose

      I know a couple of my friends have traveled alone. I am in awe at their freedom and courage. I would be ok by myself in my state obviously the surrounding cities but I don’t know how much farther I could really go.

    19. adriana

      I LOVE this!! Not looking lost is so important, especially if you’re traveling alone! I’ve never actually traveled alone but it’s a huge dream of mine. I’m so nervous, but I know it’s something I’d love!

    20. Joy

      Great tips! Especially about not being a Joey (haha) and staying alert so people won’t snatch yo stuff! I love traveling alone. Of course, I love traveling with my husband MORE, but there’s something about navigating something unfamiliar by yourself that feels rewarding and exciting.

    21. Keating

      So many great tips! I’ve traveled alone many times and it can be super nerve-wracking sometimes. But I always check in with both my husband and my parents throughout the entire trip (typically I’m driving home to visit family) so that everyone knows where I am. I take the necessary precautions so that I’m safe at all times. And another big thing I do is make sure to have the car serviced before leaving. I have a history of owning cars with serious car issues and it would be my worst nightmare to be in the middle of a 15+ hour road trip just for something bad to happen to the car. So I make sure to have the car completely serviced before leaving and keep my credit card on me as well just in case something were to happen and I need money ASAP. So helpful!

      xo, Keating | Why Hello Lovely

    22. Rachel Christian

      I’ve traveled more alone than I have with someone and these are great tips! The “don’t look lost” one is something I’m ALWAYS telling people! Its the same principle as exuding confidence even when you don’t feel it — do it long enough and other will start to believe you know what you’re doing haha!

    23. Elizabeth O

      Definitely. It is very important to be alert and walk with confidence when traveling alone. It is also very helpful to make new friends or know a few local people.


    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *