Do large crowds and constant talking make you go insane? How about long social engagements and lots of noise? If you answered yes to these questions you just might be an introvert.
If you happen to be an introvert but you also love to travel, then this article is for you. As both an introvert and a traveler, you know there are some important things to consider when making those vacation plans to ensure an enjoyable trip.
Continue reading for my Top 15 Solo Travel Tips for Introverts.
Solo Travel Tips for Introverts
Are you wondering what an introvert is and whether or not you should read this article? Check out what Psychology Today has to say about introverts.
1. Travel in the off-season
One of the best ways to avoid crowds in popular tourist destinations is to travel in the offseason. Whenever possible, try to plan your vacations around the opposite time that everybody else does. For example, instead of visiting Venice in July, visit in March or April. Trust me, visiting Venice without the crowds will be much more enjoyable for you. As an added bonus to traveling in the offseason, you’ll also be gifted with cheaper flights and hotel rooms and significantly shorter wait times at big attractions.
2. Reserve the window seat
Always book yourself a window seat whenever possible. Having the window seat is like having your own corner of the plane. Nobody enters into your space and nobody bothers you. Plus, you don’t have people stepping over you or bumping into you. If that’s not reason enough, it’s also the only way you’ll get those incredible views during take-off and landing.
This is one of my favorite travel tips for introverts. I’m a huge fan of the window seat and tend to find my flights very relaxing knowing I get so much time to myself.
3. Get up early
Another great way to avoid crowds in popular destinations is to arrive in the morning before everyone else wakes up. Most people don’t want to get up early when they’re on vacation, so if you are willing to do this, you will be rewarded with empty streets and short lines. This is also the best time of day to take pictures if you don’t want all those random people in your photos. Another added bonus to getting up early is that you’ll have more time in your day to see more stuff, so it’s really a win-win situation.
4. Stay up late
If you’re not a morning person consider staying up late. Many large tourist attractions are far less crowded in the late afternoon or early evening. Also, once attractions have closed at night the surrounding areas can become deserted, making this a perfect time to get those pictures. Yes, you’ll need to use your flash and hope for some good lighting, but there’s something to be said for having a normally crowded attraction all to yourself in the middle of the night.
5. Book your own room
If you’re traveling with a large group of friends or family, try to book your own room. The benefits of having your own room are endless, but there’s nothing better than coming back to your own quiet space at the end of a long day of sightseeing. Having your own room gives you your own time and place to get away when you need to.
This is one of the more expensive of my travel tips for introverts. That being said, it can be a real game-changer if you’re willing to deal with the extra expense.
6. Visit less popular destinations
If you’re truly not a fan of crowds, look into visiting places that nobody else is traveling to. Right now, everybody wants to go to Iceland, Bali or Croatia. Instead, consider visiting Tonga or Tuvalu. The world is such a big place, you don’t have to go to the same places as everybody else. Take a chance and try somewhere new that nobody is talking about. Besides, travel fads come and go. If you really want to visit Bali, just wait a year or two. There are plenty of places to visit in the meantime.
7. Pay the single supplement
If you’ve decided to take a group tour, pay the single supplement to have your own room. This will give you a break from the group each night and some alone time. This will also alleviate the challenges associated with sharing a room with a stranger you have just met. Plus, you’ll be able to leave your things wherever you want and won’t have to worry about the possibility of an overly chatty roommate.
This is one of my personal favorites from this list of solo travel tips for introverts. There’s nothing like being able to go back to your own room for some me-time after a long day on a group tour. The single supplement is almost always worth it in my opinion. Plus, I like the balance that comes with group tours. I get to hang out and be social if I want to during the day, but there’s certainly no obligation. Then at night, I have time to myself to recharge and relax.
I really like group tours because I think it’s nice to have the option to talk to others about traveling and their travel experiences. It’s a wonderful way to connect with people, especially since you already have so much in common. I think female travel groups are especially fun.
8. Bring a book or magazine
Always, always, always, bring along a book or magazine when you’re traveling. Having something to read will often deter strangers from approaching you or striking up a conversation if you are not open to that at the moment. Carrying a book is also a great way to enjoy the pleasures of dining alone. I love checking out new restaurants and don’t mind at all if I have to go alone, but having a book with me usually makes the experience that much better.
9. Don’t overbook your time
There’s nothing worse than having to run around from place to place, to place, when you’re supposed to be on vacation. All that running around is both stressful, and exhausting.
Pick a few things to see and do each day, but leave room in your schedule to accommodate the unexpected. You never know if you’ll stumble across something fun and interesting, or if an activity will take longer than expected. Don’t stress yourself out trying to keep to a ridiculous schedule. Leave gaps in between activities and slow down.
10. Take advantage of city tours and food tours
If your introverted self prefers to travel solo, consider booking a local city tour or a group food tour with a guide at your destination. This will give you the perfect opportunity to meet people. These tours are usually just a few hours, but provide a great opportunity to talk to people and socialize if you’ve been on a long trip and start to get lonely.
11. Get out of your comfort zone
Part of the reason we travel is to have new experiences and try new things. That being said, don’t forget to put yourself in positions to meet new people, interact with locals and push yourself out of your comfort zone. I understand that constant socializing and large crowds can be draining, but take advantage of your opportunities as much as possible while you’re traveling, even if that means pushing yourself a bit more than usual. For most of us, many of these trips are once in a lifetime experiences, try not to leave with regrets of things you wish you’d done or tried.
12. Get out into nature
If you really want some peace and quiet, consider traveling to a location that’s great for hiking or camping like New Zealand or one of the many national parks in North America. The world is a beautiful place with plenty of inspiring destinations to explore. Even if you’ve selected a large city as your destination, chances are you’ll have the opportunity to get out into nature if you drive outside the city limits. Do a little research and see what’s nearby.
13. Find the things you love at home
If you’re visiting a new destination, try to find a place or activity that will allow you to spend time doing something you love. If you love to see live music at home, look for a show in the city you’re visiting. This is a fantastic way to make yourself more comfortable in your new surroundings, and an exceptional way to learn more about the place you’re visiting. It also gives you a chance to meet new friends with similar interests and interact with the locals.
14. Communicate with your travel companions
Of all my solo travel tips for introverts, this one may be the most important. If you’re traveling with a group, be sure to communicate that you might need your own time once in a while. Most everyone will understand your need for some quiet time. In fact, they will probably be happy to get some too.
15. Don’t feel guilty
Above all else, don’t spend any time feeling guilty about the things you want to do or don’t want to do. It can be challenging if others try to make you feel guilty about not wanting to participate in a certain activity. Just remind your travel companions that it’s perfectly okay for people to have different travel styles and to want to do different things.
However, don’t forget that you need to be flexible too. There may be some activities that are not particularly exciting to you but may mean a lot to your travel companion. The key to a great trip is making sure that everybody has a great time and gets to do the things they most wanted to do.
Bonus Tip: Join a Group Tour
Just because you take a group tour does not mean you’re stuck socializing all day. In fact, this is my personal favorite of these solo travel tips for introverts. During my last group tour, I was able to socialize when I wanted to, but would just put my headphones on when I wanted to be alone. And you know what? All the other girls did exactly the same thing.
Female travel groups are an excellent way to visit destinations like the Middle East, Africa, South America, and Central America. They take care of the logistics and planning, and you get to have an incredible travel experience. Plus, you’ll be meeting new people just like yourself.
For me, I think female group tours provide the perfect balance between solo travel and traveling with friends or family. Unlike traveling with friends or family, there are no obligations. You’re going to have a great time whether you socialize or not.
I hope you’ve enjoyed these 15 Solo Travel Tips for Introverts and that I’ve given you some new ideas for your own travels.
If you’re looking for more great travel tips, check out my post on affordable off-season travel destinations.
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Eden FitePart-time Traveler | Dog Lover | Avoider of Crowds
I help people use their vacation days to see the world.