I could have flown (ugh!); I could have taken the overnight bus (double UGH!). But instead, I created an itinerary that, in a small way is reminiscent of the way people traveled 100 years ago.
Traveling solo, independently, and on a budget.
Hostels have moved along with the times and the baby boomers. Many have dropped the word “Youth” from their name. Most have private rooms available for couples and families. I frequently meet other people over 50—especially in the rural and small-town hostels.
If you are an independent traveler, it takes a lot of work to be ready to move to the next destination
If you were on an organized excursion, all this is done for you, but when you are on your own, you are on your own.
I will give you the main reasons I don’t use escorted tours, as well as a few reasons why someone would consider them.
It is important for each person to figure out what his/her travel style is. It may take a while, and it may change from time to time, and place to place. Don’t allow others determine what your travel style is.
Most independent travelers like to choose their destinations and itineraries based on their own interests, and they like to do all or most of their own travel research.
The main advantage of traveling alone is that you can decide where to go and how long to stay and you have all the say-so in your itinerary.
You won’t see as much of your destination country, but your travel experience will be much more memorable and deeper—not to mention the very special perk of meeting and becoming friends with locals.
I spent 13 months in Europe during 2017-18 for less than $1,300 USD per month using the tips in this post.
Maybe you feel that the two-to-three weeks of vacation time you get every year is just not enough. I used to say, “Gosh, if I’m going to go to the trouble and expense to travel that far, I want to stay a while!”
I envisioned a work that would show how I travel as well as inspire others to find the travel style and methods that work for them.
I got to thinking about how challenging this marathon voyage might be when I booked it. I wondered if I was biting off more than I could chew—would it be too much for me?
My goal is to be in and out of the common kitchen as quickly and with as little mess as possible. You can create stunning and healthy whole-meal salads or sandwiches with little to no actual standing-over-the-stove cooking—and very little clean-up.
My strategy for affording to visit some of my favorite European countries includes preparing most of my own meals and saving restaurants for the occasional special treats or opportunities to sample local fare.
But before you are legally in the country you must pass through the three trials: immigration, baggage claim, and customs…Then, as soon as you exit customs into the “ARRIVAL HALL,” you face a gauntlet of taxi drivers with the manners of paparazzi.
Sometimes (well, many times) when you are traveling, things don’t turn out the way you envisioned them. I had such great plans to visit some parts of Scotland and for the past year I had even visualized myself there.