Reposting this post, since I loved writing it and since we’re all slowly starting to travel (domestic) again – it may elicit a laugh!
Disclaimer: I am not a pro at solo travel.
Step wise guide on how to plan and start your solo travel:
1. Apply for leave from your corporate job (if you have one, else skip to the next step!). Beg your boss to give you leave based on your (not so) stellar performance. Appeal to his humane side. Bribe him with gifts from your travels. And finally go on strike, refuse to submit any work till he approves your leave.
2. Once your leave gets approved and you’ve finished mini-dancing in the office washroom, open Google Chrome and search the places you want to visit (if you haven’t already picked a place). Look at your savings and cross off 85% percent of the places on your bucket list (thank you bloodsucking job for making this so much easier). From the remaining, find the one that seems best for your Instagram page and finalize the place (@mokshahegde if you haven’t already checked it out).
3. Excitedly ask your loved ones if they’re interested in travelling with you, only to realise no one really loves you that much.
4. If you’re from one of those countries that doesn’t require a visa to visit most other countries (I envy you), skip this step. For my fellow travellers from India:
- Open the embassy page of the country you want to travel to
- Look at the extremely long list of visa requirements
- Almost give up on your plan to travel to that country
5. Open Skyscanner (not sponsored. I wish it was!) and look for cheap(est) flight tickets. Look at your bank balance, let out a big sigh and reach for your credit card.
6. Look at itineraries posted by others online, read blogs, Google Google Google. Panic, panic, panic. Curse yourself for thinking you could do this on your own.
7. At snail speed start finalizing your itinerary. Start looking for deals and discounts (Klook has amazing deals) as soon as you realise that your currency is far far too weak (1 Euro = Rs.79). Go from Airbnb to Hostelworld (definitely not sponsored), all the time cursing the government & economy of your country.
8. Post planning, Flash would be amazed at the speed at which your credit card gets charged. You start considering selling your kidney to make sure you get the trip you’ve been dreaming of. Stop, don’t do it.
9. Put on your earplugs and roll on an extra layer of thick skin, as you start telling people about your plans to travel alone. Pity, sympathy, advice, reviews, suggestions, shock, dissuade all come your way. (If it’s your first time.)
10. Now comes THE worst part of the trip – packing! You suddenly find a gaping hole in your wardrobe – no clothes that are vacation worthy. Thank you credit card, as you buy yourself enough clothes to clothe the entire cast of the movie Titanic. Make sure you leave some space for all the travel anxiety that comes from being paranoid about leaving your important documents behind.
11. Reach the airport much much much before time. Get through check-in, immigration, security in 15minutes and shop even more at duty free shops (face palm). Make sure you get that Starbucks coffee for your Insta -I’m-Travelling-Story.
12. Roam around the airport with your earphones plugged in through out the wait to board your flight (what else can you even do on your own?). PANIC when you realize your phone battery is down to 49% – frantically run around finding a free charging point, only to find one miles away from your boarding gate (sigh).
13. Reach the destination airport and start freaking about airport security finding drugs in your bag (even though the strongest drug you’ve ever taken is paracetamol).
13. Get out of the airport as soon as possible and start your crazy ass adventure!
Hope this post elicited a laugh!☺️
PS: In a post corona world – travel will have to be more meticulously planned.
PPS: All the photos in the blog are from my two week solo trip to Spain in October 2019
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