Solo vs Group Travel

When travelling anywhere in the world, would you rather travel on your own or with a group of friends? I have always wondered what propels someone to go out into the world on their own. Or what propels them to want to travel with others?

I can’t answer for anyone else but myself. I can only give answers as to why I like to travel solo as well as with a group of people. There are pros and cons to doing both.

Sometimes it can be circumstances that put us in the situation on solo travel or group travel. Sometimes it is a conscious choice to travel alone or with others. I have been put in both situations; circumstances and conscious choice.

Looking back, each choice was the right one for me in that instance. I guess I would have to go as far back as when I took my very first trip overseas and chose Ireland. Or it chose me …… Since it was my first trip, I probably didn’t want to take it on my own. It can be daunting to travel someplace new and not know what to expect. Luckily for me, my roommate went on this trip with me. It wasn’t as scary when we would get lost because we weren’t alone. Can you imagine how scary or nerve wracking it would be or feel if you were on your own and got lost in another country? Or at least that feeling you would get if you got lost and didn’t know what to do. Heart pounding type of feeling. Didn’t feel that because I was travelling with someone else. Now since I am talking about that feeling of getting lost then it only makes sense to talk about my next trip. Or at least my next big trip which was backpacking through Europe for three months. On my own. A friend of mine was supposed to go on this trip with me but backed out of going. For once in my life, I decided I was still going to take this trip. I was going to quit my job and do something I wanted to do. And you know what, it wasn’t as scary as I thought it would be when I got lost in London or when I got lost in Amsterdam. Being in another country and getting lost wasn’t as scary as it is when I get lost in my own country. Never could understand that. Why being somewhere else makes you feel like you can handle anything but being in your own country makes you feel like you can’t handle some things? Travelling solo was the best thing I could have done on this trip. It opens you up to meeting new people because I think it has alot to do with being more approachable when you are on your own then if you were with someone else. It enabled me to open up to talking to people during my travels that I may not have had the nerve to approach if I was with friends.

Two circumstances ….. Ireland (not on my own) and Three Month Trip to Europe (on my own). Each one different on its own but the right choice at the time.

Solo Travel: Pros 

  • Research and make itinerary for places you want to see
  • Be spontaneous and go where you want, when you want
  • Freedom being on your own
  • Not having to wait for anyone
  • Easier to meet new people; easier to approach solo travellers. Thrown into situations of meeting people you may not have met if you were travelling with friends
  • Striking up conversation with random strangers

 Solo Travel: Cons

  • Feeling lonely being on the road by yourself
  • No one to share memories of trip
  • Eating alone
  • Could be more expensive staying in a single room (hotel) then if you were sharing room with friends
  • Wouldn’t walk alone at night in a city unfamiliar with because you don’t know what could happen (no matter how safe)

Group Travel: Pros

  • Companionship
  • Having someone to share memories of trip
  • Not feeling alone
  • Sharing adventures of trip with someone else
  • Eating meals with friends
  • Walking around in the city at night because it is safer in numbers

Group Travel: Cons

  • Needing to compromise on where to go and what to see (not everyone is going to want or do the same thing)
  • Hard to be spontaneous when you have everyone else to think about in your group
  • Not as approachable when you are with a group

Anywhere there is my list. Feel free to comment on the pros and cons of solo and group travel that I may have forgotten to include.