I went to Orlando, Florida, recently, and I had a great time. I wanted to get away from all the cold weather, just for the weekend. I invited a few friends to go along, but it didn’t happen. My friends, all had the same story, too much spending during the holidays, not in the budget, or can’t take time off from work, which is understandable these days, due to the economy. A road trip, for them, was out of the question. Guess what, I decided to go anyway.
The point is you need a vacation. A little relaxation does the body, and mind right. I recommend taking a trip, for everyone, at least once a year, even if it is just a weekend getaway, just go. Now more than ever people are choosing to stay single longer, whether by choice or not? So you will definitely be in good company while on your adventurous journey.
Hotels and travel agencies have jumped on board with accommodations specifically catering to single travelers in recent years. A lot of events are geared with introducing singles to another single-minded folk for dating and fun. Cruises, skiing, hiking, biking, and other numerous activities are planned every year, they are just waiting for you to join the crowd.
Make a plan and stick with it, decide where you would like to go, you have to go somewhere outside your metro area, preferably somewhere you have never been to. You may be single, but there is nothing, or no one stopping you, except you. Solo traveling is fun and adventurous, and you get to know yourself better in the process.
You may be skeptical, and that’s understandable, it is all about making the most of just having fun, going somewhere new and exciting. Don’t knock it until you try it. If you are an objective type, you will love the freedom of being totally in control of your itinerary for the weekend, doing what you like, when, and where you like.
You are going to enjoy yourself so much, you will be wondering why you have not done this before. The calm and relaxed feeling of being away from the usual weekend activities will inspire you to try new and exciting things, stuff you were not bold enough to do with your friends and family around, now is the perfect time to do you. Here is a list of 10 things that will make your trip more enjoyable and exciting.
1. Finances – Decide on a fixed budget and try to stick to it, but make small allowances for unexpected emergencies, such as higher gas prices, that shot glass you just have to purchase, or that unusually expensive meal you just wolfed down. Be smart with your money, at the same time, treat yourself too, make it all about you…
2. Hotel Accommodations and Flights – Try and book your hotel and flight together, this will save you some money, be sure to book online and early in advance, to get the best rate. If you are driving, check your car and make sure it is in optimal performance for the long haul. Get the oil changed, battery, and tires checked. Surf the internet for great hotel rates within the area you are traveling to, the earlier you book your room, the better the rates will be. Call the City’s Visitor Center you are visiting, inquiring about hotel rates and discounts they may have available. They also will have all the information about main attractions you may want to visit and local events that may be of interest to you. Check into your hotel room and get directions for all entrances and exits in case of emergencies. Go to your room and inspect it for any discrepancies, and if you find something, not to your liking, talk to the front desk clerk to get it handled promptly.
3. Pack light – You can always improvise your wardrobe, or pick up socks, or a shirt relatively cheap at discount department stores. Many airports charge fees for more than one bag, and then there is always the possibility of your baggage being lost.. We hope not… Best to carry one big bag and one personal bag that is small enough to keep with you at all times. Travel light and bring pieces that easily coordinate, clothes that you mix and match. Do bring casual clothes that you will be comfortable in, but also a more formal set of clothes for occasions that call for a dressier style of clothes, depending on your travel location.
4. Renting a car – If you desire, rent a car when you get to your destination if you are staying in an area where public transportation is not readily feasible. It is best to rent a car in advance, but you can still get a good deal, by inquiring about weekend rates or military, college, or Triple AAA discounts. Your credit union or job may have discounts available also. Get unlimited mileage, so there is not an extra charge tacked on upon return of the car. Get insurance for any unexpected accidents, unless you are covered by your personal automobile insurance. Most major cities have an excellent transit system the bus, subway or trolley cars are your best bets. The flexibility of accessibility makes it a really great idea to get around when traveling, not to mention cost effective.
5. Be prepared and knowledgeable – Carry a map and have some insights pertaining, to the area that you’re visiting beforehand. Always take the essential road trip emergency items. A. Aspirin B. Antacid C. First Aid Kit D. Water. Do have an Itinerary, or list of attractions you plan to see, that way you are not just stumbling along and wondering where to go next. Try to stay on a schedule, but also let your inner kid loose and be silly, laugh at yourself, give yourself permission to be spontaneous and follow your free spirit.
6. Smile – Be full of good cheer, you are bound to meet people who are ready to offer friendly advice, and compliments on your cheerful demeanor. You will find yourself among other individuals, who are visiting from other places just like yourself, who are single, and traveling solo also, strikes up a conversation if you are bold enough to do so. You may make a new friend or even better, get yourself a date for dinner. You will attract what you put out there. Keep your eyes open, and be friendly to everyone, the possibilities are endless.
7. Safety – Always play it safe, keep your cell phone charged up, carry your charger. Let someone know your whereabouts, and if something or someone seems suspicious get yourself to a safe place. Be aware of your surroundings at all times. Know the emergency procedures where you are staying, know the area. Don’t get too comfortable with sightseeing where you get too wrapped up in your surroundings. Be suspicious of everyone, always trust your intuition about unusual circumstances and take everything with a grain of salt. Anything that seems off or too good to be true probably is, just use common sense and you will be okay. Have that drink and relax, you are on vacation, but keep your wits about you, whether at the bar, or later that evening, when you hit that nightclub down the street, always drink alcohol in moderation, the key is to have fun and be smart about it at the same time.
8. Be Inquisitive – Be personable and the attractive person that you are, and you will have the best time. Give yourself time to unwind before jumping to the next activity on your agenda. Ask questions, find out about the history of the town, people, culture, etc.. and take the time to stop and smell the flowers along the way. Observe the locals and scope the differences in individuals and surroundings from those places, and compare them to the familiar faces and environment of your hometown.
9. Dining – out to breakfast, lunch, and even dinner if you choose, and don’t be intimidated to dine alone. People may be curious and interested as to why you are eating alone, but they could also be admiring you for the boldness and confident person that you are. Order to your heart’s content and don’t be afraid to try new things on the menu, indulge yourself a little, you deserve it.
10. Meeting people – Find ways to meet people, if you see someone interesting says hello, introduce yourself, nothing ventured, nothing gained. Participate in events and contests, if you like. Find some things that interest you and do them, there will be others enjoying themselves right alongside you. Sitting at the bar and having a drink or your meal, is a great way to meet other people, which could lead to meaningful conversations it’s all about networking and socializing, you might get a date for dinner the next night if you’re lucky…. Last, but not least, you are on vacation, and if it feels right, go for it, as long as it is legal, and you won’t regret it the next morning. Enjoy and treat, the most important person in your life. Yourself.
Have fun and happy travels.