Travelling solo backpacking across Europe was one of the most enriching experiences of my adult life. Don’t get me wrong, I love the camaraderie of travelling with friends and the bonding with family members outside of everyday routine. Yet nothing beats the freedom of being unconstrained in where to go, what to do and the excitement of new friendships with the most unexpected people.
With solo travel the number 1 travel trend in 2019 according to Skyscanner and set to grow in 2020, here are some tips for the solo female traveller.
#1 Choose a destination with friendly locals and a low crime rate
Once you have some experience travelling solo and want more, the world is your oyster! But if you are starting out, it’s better to opt for one of the many countries / cities that is known for its hospitality and safety for solo female travellers. A few of our recommendations:
Iceland (Reykjavík): Consistently ranked number one on the Global Peace Index, this picturesque country has one of the lowest crime rates in the world and a beautiful, laid-back culture.
Canada (Montreal, Vancouver, Toronto): Home to some of the safest cities in the world, Canadians are friendly and approachable.
New Zealand (South Island): Currently ranked number two on the Global Peace Index, New Zealand combines adventure and stunning scenery for the ultimate vacation.
South Island / Source: Cassie Matias
Thailand (Chiang Mai): For a destination closer to home and a more affordable solo trip, Chiang Mai offers a serene experience and serves as a springboard to the surrounding rainforests, waterfalls and nearby popular town Pai.
Lapa, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil / Source: Selina.com
#2 Opt for co-living spaces
Co-living spaces, basically modern communes that encourage residents to interact and work together, is a rising trend among millennial professionals and attracts both locals and out-of-towners alike. Less lonely than traditional hotels and with more comforts than hostels, here are a few established co-living chains:
Lyf by Ascott https://www.lyfbyascott.com/en.html: Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Philippines, China and Japan
WeLive (sister company to WeWork) https://www.welive.com/: Currently only in New York and Washington DC Area
Selina https://www.selina.com/: Locations across America, Europe and in Israel
Source: Omar Lopez
#3 Join a social network for solo female travellers
What better way to make new friends on the road than to connect with like-minded travellers? Mobile apps and online communities can not only help you find travelling companions but are a great resource for solo travel experiences and tips.
Tourlina https://tourlina.com/: Just like Tinder but for solo women travellers, Tourlina matches women with female travel buddies and locals in the city they are visiting.
The Solo Female Traveler Network https://thesolofemaletravelernetwork.com/: An online community of women travellers who connect via social media, travel meetups and offer/receive free accommodation.
Wanderful www.sheswanderful.com: Similar to The Solo Female Traveler Network, Wanderful allows female travellers to find travel buddies and homesharing opportunities around the globe, participate in local chapters or join solo travel tours.