Making Friends on the Road: Why Traveling Solo is Easier Than You Think

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The idea of traveling solo around the world can seem incredibly daunting to someone that’s never done it.

There are a lot of advantages to traveling on your own (such as the fact that it forces you to meet other people and to become independent), and with more women than ever traveling solo, it’s clear that more and more people are seeing the benefits.

When traveling solo, there’s really no need for you to be on your own a lot of the time, and there are lots of things that you can do to quickly and easily make friends whilst on the road.

Despite all of this, the thought of traveling alone can still be a little scary (even for an experienced traveler).

Because of this, here are a few things that you can do to make traveling solo (and meeting people) a lot easier:

Taj Mahal

Go on an Organized Tour

Going on an organized tour is a great thing to do when traveling solo, as you’ll be put into a group with lots of other people all with a common interest.

There are all kinds of organized tours available all around the world, and they can involve walking, hiking, riding bikes and driving around different places.

From going on a pub crawl around Berlin to riding a bicycle through Amsterdam, organized tours can be really fun events and will get you out of the typical solo traveler routine of walking around and seeing the sights on your own.

For more information, check out this post titled ‘The top 5 reasons to go on an organized tour’.

Stay in Hostels

As I mentioned in this article about finding good hostels, hostels are great places to stay because (as well as being inexpensive) they’re a places where travelers naturally converge and interact with each other, which is great if you’re traveling solo, as there’s going to be lots of other like-minded people to make friends with.

Most hostels offer the choice of either staying in a dorm room (or some kind of shared group room) or a single room. Staying in a dorm room (apart from being a lot cheaper) will give you more opportunities to meet people, but if you’re not comfortable with that than getting a single room is fine.

As well as acting like an unofficial meeting place for travelers, most hostels also organize events (such as tours around the city) that you can go on. As I mentioned earlier with organized tours, these are great places to meet other people.


An alternative to staying in hostels is to CouchSurf. This is a website that allows you to get in contact with people who have free couches for you to sleep on, and is fast becoming a global phenomenon.

The great thing about CouchSurfing (apart from it being completely free) is that you’ll be meeting local people and experiencing life the way they live it, instead of being spoon-fed an image of a place the way tourism companies want you to see it.

More details about CouchSurfing can be found in this article.

Times Square

Find Work or Do Some Volunteering

If you’re planning on staying in one particular area, it can be a good idea to find a job or to do some volunteering.

One of my close friends spent a month volunteering at a local school in South Africa. He spent his time teaching young children how to use computers, how to read and then played sports with them in the afternoons. He’s always said it’s the most rewarding things he’s ever done.

Doing either can be a great experience, and enables you to view a local culture in a way most travelers never will.

Take a Class

One of the great things about traveling is that it opens up so many opportunities to do things that you wouldn’t normally be able to do.

When you’re in foreign lands you’ll have the opportunity to take classes and to educate yourself on different things.

Whether it’s a cooking class in Bangkok or a tango dancing class in Buenos Aires, taking a class is a great way to do something fun and to meet other people, as you’ll be sharing their triumphs and helping each other out along the way.

There's no reason to be alone when traveling

Being Open Minded

In short, the best way to meet people and to make new friends while traveling is to always be open to new experiences.

For example, if someone invites you to play a game of Frisbee in the park, or asks you to come with them to their friend’s party, take them up on their offer. You won’t regret it!

Of course, if you get a bad feeling about someone, declining their offer politely is fine, but in most cases the offers you’ll get from people while you’re traveling will be genuine and innocent.

At the end of the day, not having a partner or a group of people to travel with shouldn’t stop you from fulfilling your dreams and traveling the world.

Meeting people on the road can lead to a lot of unexpected (and memorable) adventures, and by traveling solo you’re far more likely to seek out these kinds of encounters.

Many people worry about traveling on their own because they think they’ll be lonely and they won’t meet anyone. In actual fact, meeting people and making friends on the road is a lot easier than people think.

For further reading, check out this post titled ‘Five rules to live by when traveling solo’.

Related posts:

  1. Should I Go Traveling Alone Or With Friends?
  2. Why More Women Than Ever Are Traveling Solo
  3. 8 Ways to Deal with Loneliness When Traveling Solo
  4. Using GPS-Based Apps to Make USA Road Trips Easier
  5. Solo Travel – Five Rules to Live By

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