Like there are only 9 out of possible 100’s!Souvik Mandal
Seeing countless travel pics on your Instagram, feeling jealousy rise up to your throat while scrolling past the Facebook posts of your friend’s backpacking trip, I am sure that you’ve wanted to that one solo trip since forever. Don’t these stories invigorate you to pull up your socks and satiate the wanderlust in you? Then let me give you some more solid reasons as to why you shouldn’t delay your solo trip any further.
Here you go.
1. You are on your own – There are times when backpacking compels you to get out of your comfort zone, and this makes you grow. Well, there were times when I ran out of cash, got stuck on the road, and I had to do hitchhiking to get back to my hostel. The takeaway is that you get to be street-smart in the long run.
2. You learn a lot more about yourself – This brings out the incredible feeling of being liberal and having the freedom to do anything. When you travel with your friends, subconsciously you will act the way they expect you to! Traveling is a great way to know your own self. You might be a caveman back at your home but when you are out there, in the open, all on your own, you may want to be the ultimate explorer. There’s nobody to judge and even if there is, who cares! You are anyway not going to see them again! So yes, you get to be your true self.
3. Budget-based travel plans to the rescue – You don’t have to be rich to travel your dream destination. There are so many hacks to travel on a low budget. Besides, it’s okay to spend less on your journey, as long as you get to reach where you’ve always wanted to be. Over the years I have always preferred to stay in hostels or guest houses when it comes to accommodation. There are alternative modes of accommodation like Airbnb and Couchsurfing as well to make yourself feel home at someone else’s house.
4. How about having the luck of finding your better half? You are likely to meet someone like-minded while traveling without constraints. You can also give it a fair shot of traveling together if he/she is traveling solo, while I was backpacking in Kerala. The tendency to befriend someone is always more when there are bumpy overnight bus rides, bonfire sessions or maybe trekking on boulders
5. You’ll become a storyteller – Over the years, backpacking will give you enriching experiences. You’re going to have a heroic image while you share the adventurous stories with your friends and in coming years to your children as well! Wouldn’t you want yourself to be perceived as the coolest parent ever
6. Travel when you feel like – this is the best part about traveling solo. It has taught me that I don’t need to be dependent on anyone just because their schedule can’t just seem to overlap with mine. I can stay wherever for as long as I wish to! Besides, if you wait for the perfect travel partner, you could end up waiting forever. So why be left out?! Start moving already!
7. You can break free – You get to be spontaneous and reckless when you’re having your own time. This is super fun and I assure you that you’ll end up cherishing the crazy times you had with other travelers. I still remember going gaga over having bhang lassi (sweet curd shake) and also shooting one of the road trips having a GoPro.
8. Experiencing the local culture- You get to interact with the locals wherever you travel to. For me, India being a diverse country, I have always thought of knowing my country first before sailing over international waters. If a map fails you, there are always locals to help you out and even if you don’t understand their language, you can always use gestures to communicate.
9. Volunteer while you travel – There are so many opportunities out there in backpackers’ hostels where you get to volunteer and stay for free. This makes international backpacking all the more affordable and practical. Even in southeast Asia, there is so much demand for English teachers! So hello to all those people who love teaching!