How to deal with fears of traveling solo? How to avoid uncomfortable situations? How to prepare for a solo trip? How to finance the trip, and finally enjoy it?
For our third podcast session, we had a cozy and open women talk about traveling solo. Una, Julia, and Camilla shared their stories, actionable advice, and useful tips.
To hear all the stories and take a note of useful tips, listen to our full podcast here:
Una - Hello everyone and welcome to the Fashion Potluck Podcast Sessions. My name is Una and I’m the content manager of Fashion Potluck. I am here with two guests. So, I'm here with Camilla -the guest, and Julia - the Chief Marketing Officer of Fashion Potluck. Hello girls! Now we are in our office in Amsterdam and we're going to be discussing a really fun topic - traveling solo as a female. Though, I think it would be fun to actually first tell us a bit about your experience. Camilla, what was your trip? Where did you go solo?
Camilla – So, earlier this year I had six months unpaid leave from my work. I work for IKEA here in the Netherlands and I went away for five and a half months starting in the Philippines and then I went to New Zealand, then had a few days in Sydney, I went to Vietnam, Nepal, and Tibet.
Una - It sounds amazing!
Camilla – Yeah, I chose countries where I really wanted to spend time and really explore a few countries.
Una - How did you choose the countries? Were you there before or that it was the first time you were visiting them?
Camilla – Well, some of them I visited before. I went to Vietnam before and I've been to Nepal before, but just shorter trips and I really wanted to go back and explore them more. And then my dream destination forever has been New Zealand and the Philippines. Those are countries where you can just go for two-three weeks. So, I really wanted to take the proper time to explore them and that's how I chose my destination.
Julia – For how long have you been there?
Camilla - In New Zealand? For six weeks! And I still felt it wasn't enough.
Una - But what about you Julia?
Julia – Well, I think I've been traveling solo for most of my trips because, I don't know, for some reasons, sometimes I wanted to just travel myself and explore things by myself because there are certain things I like about it. And, sometimes my friends were just not available because many of them have different life phases - some of them are still studying, for example, some of them already have kids and families. So, sometimes it would be just hard to arrange it, especially when we are spread through different countries and continents. So, I travel mostly by myself and I think the most striking destinations for me were Italy, because it was my first solo trip after I moved by myself to Germany. This trip was my first ever trip by myself and I did it actually on purpose, and then also the striking one would be South Africa, because there are some interesting stories. ?
Una – For how long have you been there?
Julia - I went to South Africa for six months.
Una – That’s really nice, exciting! But there is often before starting your travels, lots of females have this fear. “Should they do it? What’s going to happen?” and stuff like that. Did you have these fears and how did you deal with them?
Camilla - Yeah. I've traveled also by myself earlier, also like Julia. A few shorter trips. But I've never been away for six months before, in different places, traveling around. I was a bit worried – “Am I going to be lonely? Am I going to meet enough people?”. I know I'm social and I like that. So it was never that I was not scared of the part of meeting people, but will it be lonely. That was my biggest fear I think.
Una - But did that fear continue also during your trip?
Camilla – No, because only after a few weeks I realized how easy it is to meet people, it's even easier to meet people when you're on your own because you have to you have to talk to other people and other people are easier approaching you. And I think that's very interesting as well.
Una - That's true. What about you Julia?
Julia - I don't think I had any fears really. Because initially, I started traveling with small trips and then I didn't have a fear to be lonely for instance, because it was just a couple of days. And yeah, I didn't really have fears, not even when I was going to South Africa as I knew already a couple of people there and I was going there for a purpose which was a job. So, I knew that I will end up meeting people and if I will have questions they will always be there to help me. So, nothing comes really to the top of my mind.
Una – Okay, well that's nice to hear. But what steps did you take to prepare yourself for the trip?
Camilla - I think it's important to first talk to yourself, like what do I want to get out of it? Do I want to have complete freedom in terms of like just buying one ticket with an open end and not having a return ticket? Do you want to plan everything? Do you want to have all your flights booked? So, I chose a middle ground. I had decided on which destinations I really wanted to explore because I was afraid if I don't research that in the beginning it will never really happen or time will run out. But in every country I had freedom. So, for those six weeks in New Zealand, I hadn't planned what I was going to do for example.
Julia - You never booked hotels or hostels? You always did it on the place?
Camilla - Yeah. Only a little bit in advance, but not like half a year in advance to prepare for the trip.
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