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Top 7 Tips For First Time Solo Female Travelers

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Hi if this is your first time on our blog… Welcome! Whitney and Tameika here, Co-creators of an international retreat company called the Whole Experience. We have been traveling the world as global nomads for the last six years! We are passionate about all things travel and empowering women to live their best lives.  

We know first hand, solo female travel can be quite intimidating to think about when you’ve never traveled on your own before. People are often concerned about the safety and being able to overcome the intimidation of traveling alone. Though it can be intimidating, it can also be a very rewarding and transformational experience. After making some mistakes on our own and learning the hard way, we want to share some of our top tips with you to help ensure your first solo trip abroad is an amazing experience!

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Top 7 tips for first-time solo female travelers 

#1 Do your research prior to booking: 

Make sure that your travel destination is generally safe for solo female travelers. Choose accommodation that is near transportation and the major sites, this will likely ensure you are in the more touristy areas that are generally more safe. Do research to find out which neighborhoods are the safest, especially at night. Try to book in those areas. Do research on your accommodations, make sure reviews are positive when it comes to safety and customer service. 

#2 Pack Light

Let’s face it most of the time as women we overpack… Then end up dragging items around the world we never even used! Take it from us, pack light. Outside of some medication and name-brand beauty products, you can find what you need almost anywhere. Plus, you are likely going to want to buy souvenirs from your travels. So you will need the extra space. Bring comfortable shoes and clothes that are easy to move around in. We also intentionally pack clothing that does not wrinkle easily and can be easily mixed and matched for maximum looks with minimal space. We also love to stay organized while traveling. Items like packing cubes can be super helpful to cut down on time spent looking for things in your suitcase. 

We of course always enjoy meals while we are traveling! Such a huge part of travel is to enjoy local dishes and unique flavors. However, by having some of our own meals and snacks ready, it helps to implement more balance and choose to eat out for those meals that will really serve us. As a rule of thumb, we aim for the 80/20 (80% of our meals are whole foods-based and nutritious while 20% are a bit more fun!).

Watch how we pack lightly!

#3 Blend In

If you are traveling with a purse make sure the strap isn’t too long and if you have a wallet avoid putting too much money or cards inside. It is always a good idea to leave some backup money/cards and your passport in the safe at the hotel, rather than carrying everything on you. Make sure not to put your phone or purse down when you are shopping. Also, try not to look like a tourist by wearing flashy jewelry or clothing. Petty theft can happen anywhere in the world. So just as you would in a major city in the U.S, play heads up and be street smart.

#4 Ask locals for advise

It is great to do your research ahead of time and hit the famous sites. However, if you really want to get an authentic experience. It is best to get off the beaten path. Try to eat where locals eat and experience more of how the actual people of that country live. We always do this by asking our local uber or taxi drivers for their recommendations. We strike up conversations with local shopkeepers. We always try to learn at least a few phrases in the local language which goes a long way in creating friends. We have been invited to weddings, dined with families in their homes, and had such unique experiences because of this openness we have when we travel.

#5 Less is MORE

When we first started traveling it was all about how many countries we could see. However, we have come to realize that in order to truly learn and understand a culture it is best to slow down. To truly immerse yourself there and not just hit the iconic sites. So if you have the chance, take more time in each location you visit. Get off the beaten track. You will likely have an incredibly unique and transformational experience. 

#6 Build a Community

It is great to do things alone at times. However, depending on how long you are in the country. It can also be nice to make some friends. We have found, Facebook expat groups are a great way to find out about local events taking place. Or going to a hostel (even if you are not staying at one)  as they often put on events daily and it is a great way to meet fellow travelers.

Not quite ready for a purely solo trip yet?

Come on a trip with us! We curate 7 night all-inclusive experiences to help empower women to travel the world while focusing on their wellness journeys.

We aim to be the perfect blend of wellness, travel, adventure and sisterhood. Want to learn more about which retreat we have coming up next? Check out our website: https://thewholeexperience.org/the-whole-experience-retreats/

 The bottom line is that traveling alone will be one of the best things you’ll ever do for yourself. It will push you out of your comfort zone, you will meet new and exciting people and be expanded in ways that you never thought possible before.  The world is full of amazing places and if we listened to all the fear out there, we would have never been blessed to travel to over 100 countries collectively. If going on an adventure is calling to you and you’re tired of waiting on others to finally be ready to travel. Believe in yourself! We have found kind, generous and amazing souls all over the world that remind us what a beautiful world we truly live in.

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