Solo traveling


Traveling alone, completely solo, is that the new way of finding oneself? It is popular and more and more people take solo trips. There are facebook groups for that kind of traveling and there are several blogs and sites. One woman who knows a lot about this, is the one we meet this week. She has a lot of interesting things to tell about going on vacation without company. And hey, if you want to meet other people still, it is actually easy to do so.

Name: Janice Waugh

Age: 62

Occupation: Travel writer

Family: I live with my husband, Simon. We married in 2017. I have two sons, two stepsons and five grandchildren from my late husband. But I also inherited another four children through Simon so, in fact, it's a family of eight children in total and eleven grandchildren. Family is important to us.

Lives in: Toronto, Ontario, Canada

You and a friend of yours have a web site and also a facebook group where you give tips and inspire female solo travelers. Would you say that such trip is a dream to many?

The number of people traveling solo has grown greatly over the years. For many years, it was considered the number one trend in travel.

When we started, it did seem like a huge challenge to many but now, this is not the case. Most people on the Solo Travel Society on Facebook consider traveling solo  to be quite normal.

But, you're right, there are still those who find it a bit daunting. Our site helps people overcome their fears with information. I regularly get e-mails from people who have been following the site for a number of years and are finally taking their first solo trip.

Both men and women do solo trips, but more women. Why the inequality, and why do more and more people go alone on vacation?

There are many reasons for both the trend to more solo travel and more women traveling solo than men. First, the demographics of western countries have changed significantly with more people being single longer and more frequently due to divorce. There has also been a trend over the last sixty years or so towards individualism. It showed itself in the youth movement of the 1960s and has not slowed down.

As for more women traveling solo than men, I would like to point you to an article I wrote on the subject. There is no specific research on this subject but I have made a few observations on the topic. 

A couple of things may be the rise of feminism in the 60s and 70s and also the fact that single women tend to get on better than single men and, therefore, feel all right traveling alone. Please read the article to find out more and perhaps even make your own conclusions. 

Among the ten tips you give, you say that one does not have to be alone. Is not that exactly the reason many goes without someone else?

Some people travel solo to be alone but not everyone. I travel solo because I like meeting other travelers and locals. It's easier to do so when you're not with and focusing on someone else. Traveling solo means leaving behind the people you know, people who have expectations of you, and traveling free to explore and live how you want.

Before ending this interview, how many solo trips have you done yourself?

Oh my. That's hard to say as I'm not one to count countries or trips. But I would say between 50 and 60. I have covered every country in Western Europe and a number in eastern Europe. I have yet to visit Scandinavia but it's high on my list. India was fabulous as was Chile. And, of course, I have traveled extensively through Canada. 

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