Safety By Numbers

Travelling alone is totes exciting, but you want to make sure that your holiday doesn’t take a Taken-esque turn.

Portrait of Tammy Strobel
Travelling alone is totes exciting, but you want to make sure that your holiday doesn’t take a Taken-esque turn.
My Reading Room
+Travelling solo doesn’t mean travelling alone

Your solo trip shouldn’t limit you from doing stuff together in a group. For example, if you want to explore a remote area or embark on a hike, trek, or dive, it’s best to do them with some peeps. That way, you’ll have someone to watch your back should anything happen.

+Take it easy on the alcohol

We’re not saying don’t drink – it’s a holiday after all. But don’t go all Spring Breakers because it’s not like you’re back home where your friends will see you to your doorstep if you’re drunk. You have to take care of yourself, so stay alert and be in control.

+Be aware of your surroundings

Even if you’re appreciating the breath-taking sights of ancient ruins, or chilling by a road side cafe, keep an eye on the general situation and people around you. You never know who’s been eyeing you.

+Don’t put all your IDs in one place

Make photocopies of your passport, IC and any other travel documents and keep them in different bags and pockets. If your wallet or purse gets stolen, you’ll still have backup in your luggage.

+Trust your gut

Sometimes, it’s best to just listen to your gut. Don’t like the vibe of that new person you just met? Stay away. Your accommodation seems dodgy? Move out and find a new one. Never underestimate the power of your intuition.

My Reading Room

Hanging out with new friends – yay or nay?

It might seem like everyone is out to rob you during the first few hours on foreign land, but trust us – making a few friends won’t hurt. “Make the effort to engage with other travellers, so that you can keep a lookout for each other,” says Jia Jih. “You should also make yourself known to someone who may notice if you don’t return as expected.”

Power Trip

Not convinced? We get CLEO readers to share with us their memorable solo travel experiences.

“When I was searching for listings on Airbnb and chanced upon the countryside cottage in Scotland, I was determined to go there because it I felt like I had stumbled upon a secret hideaway. The hosts went all out to make my stay a highly pleasant and memorable one, from offering me freshly plucked tomatoes from their garden for breakfast, to inviting me for meals and letting me spend time with their baby daughter. They even offered me their bicycle, which I used for many afternoons to explore the countryside.”

Joanna, Airbnb Employee

“When I decided to embark on my first solo trip, I knew my destination of choice had to be Japan. I’ve been to Japan many times with my friends and family, but it’s great to go somewhere you’re already familiar with so you won’t feel like a fish out of water. I ended up learning how to enjoy my own company without worrying about getting lost.”

Denise, Nurse

“I remember being so scared about my first solo trip, so I opted for a short one in Vietnam. You’ll slowly get used to your own company, get out of your comfort zone and be braver in the things you set out to do. I’ve since headed to Europe and US for my solo trips – next up is South America!”

Amy, Banker

“There’s a freedom in choosing whatever time you want to wake up, where you want to visit and what you want to do. You don’t have to put up with friends who want to do different things. That’s the best part about travelling solo.”

Nadia, Teacher

More: friends