Philippine Travel: Are You Ready to Travel Solo?

Whether it is locally or internationally, most people dream of travelling usually with family or friends. But few people consider travelling alone. If you have never considered this possibility, let us share some tips with you that can help to determine whether you're ready for your first solo adventure.

single travel philippines
Image Source: Gap Year

Whenever I ask someone if they are open to "solo travel," I often get the same response: "I am afraid of getting lost and it's not fun travelling alone." In fairness, I responded the exact same way when I was first asked that very same question. But surprisingly, giving it a try for the first time actually changed my perspective of it and inspired me to want to do it again. What I discovered was that the key is in the preparation.

The first question that any aspiring solo traveller should ask is, "Why do I want to go to that place?" Your answer to this question will likely trigger a series of follow up questions that will help you to prepare for your first solo travel experience. In order to identify the answers to these questions, you will likely have to RESEARCH.

Conducting your own research is an important first step before travelling. While it is indeed time consuming, it may surprise you just how much money and how many headaches it can save later on. Furthermore, you might just end up learning a lot! Make time to sketch out a basic travel itinerary in advance that you would enjoy.

Over the years, I have learned much from my own experience and from listening to a stalwart travel writer, Angie Duarte. These are some of my findings:


It's one thing to know where you want to go, but what is even more important is figuring out how to get there. Travelling will most likely involve riding a bus, ship, or airplane. If you choose to walk or swim, that is a totally viable choice but it might take you a long time! If you are on a budget like most solo backpackers, be sure to shop around for promo airfares offered by low-cost carriers that can save you a lot of money. Where there are budget flights, you can usually find budget hotels as well. For those travelling abroad, make sure that you prepare all of your necessary travel documents ahead of time such as visas and travel insurance. Be sure to research public transportation in your destination city as this will save you what could be expensive taxi fares.


Quite often if you find a cheap airfare to a certain destination, there is a good reason for it and more often than not, it is related to the weather. This is commonly known as off-season. In places like the Philippines, it would likely be our rainy season. It's not bad to travel at this time but you may need to adjust your expectations. I always recommend checking the climate and season of your intended destination before you travel. This is important as it will help you to prepare appropriate clothing for your trip. The last thing you would want is to exit the airport draped in a heavy coat and rain boots only to be greeted by a beautiful warm summer breeze. You might just end up in hospital with a heat stroke!


If you are already itching to go and think you have already finished your research, find out some of the unique attributes of your destination. Is your trip long enough to appreciate the unique character and culture of the people in your intended destination? There is much more to travel than merely sightseeing and I always aim to try and understand the way of life at my destination, which enables me to respect the people so much more. Always be open and curious. Never pretend that you know it all because you might just be surprised what you find out. There is always something new to learn.


This is extremely important. If you are travelling locally, then it likely won't be an issue. But if you are travelling to another country, you will need it to survive. You will need to find out what the local currency is at your intended destination and then research the current currency exchange. You can always try to look for money changers in your home country that can exchange your money to that of your destination's currency. But beware that exchange rates can fluctuate and some money changers will offer better deals than others. If you can't find any currency exchange services at home, there is usually a currency exchange in the airport. However, the exchange rates are not usually as good as those found in the city. In addition, they may charge service fees that could destroy your budget. If possible, just exchange a minimal amount in order to buy a bus or train ticket into the city. You could also consider using an ATM to withdraw money in the local currency. If possible, carry US Dollars rather than Philippine Pesos, as not all money changers will accept the peso.


“いらしゃいませ ("Irashaimase!") --- the waiters shout at you as you enter a restaurant in Japan. You panic and leave immediately wondering what is going on. But what most don't realise is that the word actually means ‘welcome’ in Japanese. If you will be travelling to a place where English is not the primary language, it is always good to know a few survival phrases. These can easily be found with a little research online. Aside from the fact that it can get you through a meal in a restaurant, it is also a great way to learn a new language. Not only will this enable you to talk with locals, but it may also earn you a free language lesson by the end of the day!


If you are finally ready to engage in your first solo travel experience, just remember one rule: BE ADVENTUROUS but within reason. You are responsible for your own safety and it is important to ensure that family and friends know where you are heading. Always be flexible when it comes to your prepared itinerary. If on your second day it rains and you were set for a sunny day, find ways to enjoy the rainy day. Always make sure to manage your expectations so that you will not be disappointed. For example, take time to find out the operating hours of a museum before you leave or to identify the type of room you want in your hotel.

With these quick and easy tips, solo traveling  can be a memorable experience for everyone and it is definitely worth a try. You Only Live Once, so enjoy it as much as you can!



  1. I love to travel to tropical places! Tropical places I have been to are Papua New Guinea, Indonesia, Australia, The Bahamas, and Costa Rica. I love tropical flowers, plants, bugs, the food, the ocean, the people, and so much more! I would love to add Philippine to my travel list. These places make me feel amazing!!!

    1. That is great to hear! There are a lot of things that you can do in the Philippines. Hope to hear your experiences in this beautiful country. Be safe and happy traveling!

  2. There is a pleasure in the pathless woods,
    There is a rapture on the lonely shore,
    There is society, where none intrudes,
    By the deep sea, and music in its roar:
    I love not man the less, but Nature more
    The Outdoor Women

  3. This article was a big help for me during my first solo trip in Malaysia last month. I loved meeting new people and environment. I'm looking forward for my next solo adventures! :)

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