I often get ask how I survive a solo road trip. Don’t I get bored or lonely? How do I handle the long drives by myself? What about safety and mechanical concerns?
Well this blog is here to answer all these questions! I will admit I have only travelled around Australia on a road trip (with New Zealand in the near future!). However, all these tips can easily relate to any solo road trip in destinations all around the world.
I would also like to clarify that when I say ‘surviving’ , I don’t mean like literal survival because its dangerous. I mean how I stay sane, make the most of my time, kept myself entertained on the long drives and deal with no socialisation for long periods of time
So without further adieu, here are my tips for surviving a solo road trip! If you are looking for reasons to venture out on a solo road trip or just travel solo in general, you can read my blog; 5 reasons to travel solo.
How I stop myself from getting bored
When I travel by myself I actually have a habit of getting bored quicker than I get lonely. Although, it is important to note that I enjoy the pleasure of my own company, have a very small socialising battery and am very used to travelling alone. To me, getting bored on the road can make me restless and uneasy. So what do I do to avoid this? Here are a few helpful tips to avoid getting bored.
Plan a busy itinerary
I don’t mean you have to have heaps of things packed into one day, so much that it is an overload. Although, a good way to avoid getting bored is to make an itinerary or plan your days where you are doing lots of activities. I like to make sure I’m visiting a few places or doing a few activities everyday, just to keep myself entertained.
Read books or download movies
Even on the road you need a little down time and during these moments I like to either watch movies or read a book. I usually do this when I’ve arrived at a campsite early or have a few hours to kill in the morning. This is also a good idea incase you get rained in and can’t do any of your planned activities.
I know I said I have a small socialising battery, however I do like to have the occasional chat to some fellow campers. By making friends it also opens up more opportunities for activities, this might include a day trip together or having drink/a gander around a campsite.
Cook your own meals
Cooking your own meals definitely helps with Boredom. It fills some extra time you might have in the morning or afternoon, plus it adds to the whole camping experience.
Have a bomb playlist while driving
How do I survive those long drives (especially in Australia)? Well I have about 2-3 playlists which have all my favourites hits. As I have a voice that sounds like nails on a chalkboard, it’s nice to shout my favourite songs in my car when no one’s listening. I also download podcasts or audio books, if I am looking for something a bit different. A few other good tips to survive long road trips is to make sure you have breaks, eat or stop off at some sights along the way.
How I deal with loneliness on the road
Getting lonely is a big one for a lot of solo travellers, and it can take a big toll on your mental health and affect your holiday. I do think a big part of helping stop the feeling of loneliness is by keeping yourself from getting bored. Cause lets face it when you are by yourself and bored you start thinking of how good it would be if someone was there with you. So my biggest tip is to do the above and keep yourself entertained. However if you are feeling lonely, here are a few things you can try to help.
Keep in contact with your family and friends
I regularly chat with my family and friends while on the road, over the phone, text and social media. This helps me stay connected with others, even in some of the most remote places. I actually regularly talk to my instagram followers too, and this sounds silly, but this does help with loneliness. This makes me feel like I am sharing my experiences with someone constantly. Just like talking to a big group of mates!
Similar to helping with boredom, making friends on the road is a great way to stop those feelings of loneliness! It is actually quite easy to make friends on the road. I usually have a good chat with my camping neighbours or people at a pub when I am solo travelling. Just keep in mind making friends while camping can be a bit harder than making friends in hostels. Some people generally just want to be left alone while camping, so make sure you sus out the vibe.
Join a tour
A great way to help with feeling lonely, is to join a day tour! This is a great way to make friends, keep yourself entertained and be surrounded by people for a day. Which really does help if you are feeling lonely.
I hate to say it, but if you are going out on a solo road trip you will have to accept that you might get lonely a few times during the trip. This is okay, be kind to yourself. It’s a perfectly normal feeling, just remember why you have gone on this solo road trip and enjoy it. Remember you are not going to feel this way forever!
How to stay safe while on a solo road trip
I have already written a blog which contains some of helpful tips to stay safe on the road, which includes some mechanical advice. If you want to read it, you can check it out here.
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