1. Plan, plan, plan.
You don't have to decide on every little detail of your trip right now, but being prepared saves you time, effort, and money. For example, looking for accommodations ahead of time (and booking directly on the hotel's website) gives you the luxury of choosing the most affordable rates and getting the best deals. Planning, however, spans not just your itinerary, but also the things you would bring to your destination, like clothes, accessories, and toiletries. It’s best to plan months ahead of your scheduled trip, but make sure to be flexible enough to make changes as the travel date draws near.
2. Plot your itinerary on Google Maps.
This way, the information will be readily available when you need it. Study it beforehand, if you can. You can also download the areas you’re going to so you can navigate them offline, just in case there’s no Wi-Fi or the data signal’s poor.
3. Don’t expect it to be easy.
Having this mindset will keep you on your toes and help you react to circumstances effectively in case something happens. Have backup options for when things don’t go as envisioned, like when the resto you want to try won’t be open ‘til the next few hours or the train to your next destination doesn’t leave as scheduled so that you get to maximize your trip!
4. Be prepared for possible drawbacks.
It’s fun to be carefree once in a while (and it can be quite tempting to do so while on a trip!) but do not go #YOLO on the basic stuff. As much as possible, bring meds for headache, fever, stomach flu—you don’t want to be sick and alone in another place even just for a few days. When in another country, ensure you have all your travel documents with you. If possible, make copies of your passport and IDs in case of emergencies.
5. Be patient with yourself.
Give yourself time to adjust to your new location and the people in it. Instead of getting stressed over a few mistakes, learn from each blunder and chalk everything up to experience. These lessons will come in handy for when you go on another trip by yourself! And by then, you now know how to handle things better.
6. Be thick-skinned.
Whether you like it or not, you have to have some kapal ng mukha when traveling solo. You’ll need it to ask for directions, have your #OOTDs taken, and join tour groups to save money, among many other things.
7. Don’t reveal too much.
You’ll meet fellow travelers along the way and make new friends (which is great!), but for your safety, don’t tell everyone you meet that you’re a first-time solo traveler. In other words, don’t go TMI on them. As much as possible, avoid disclosing personal details and your destination plans especially when it’s not needed.
8. Keep in touch with your family and friends back home.
While going on solo trips can be fun, going home to an empty hotel room without anyone to share your stories with can trigger homesickness. Connect with your family and friends by sharing a snap or two—but remember not to go overboard!
If you're taking a solo trip around the Philippines, check to see if there's a Go Hotels branch near you here. Conveniently located in the heart of most major cities and neighborhoods, Go Hotels ensures that you have a hassle-free and comfortable stay at an affordable price—all the better to budget your remaining travel fund!