Tips, tricks and apps to help you master an adventure for one.
PICTURE THIS One drawback to travelling solo is that you end up with a lot of arm’slength selfies. Book a professional photographer from Canadian company Flytographer, which operates in 160 cities, to tour around town with you and take candid shots (from $338).
YOUR OWN ROOM Airbnb doesn’t just rent entire homes; solo travellers can book single rooms. Added bonus: You’ll likely be living with a local who can advise you on must-see spots.
CAN I GET A RIDE? Widely available in Europe and other countries, BlaBlaCar is the Airbnb of carpooling. Passengers can search for rides by location and date, and drivers set a fee. It’s usually cheaper than public transit and an efficient way of getting the lay of the land.
JUST ONE BAG Enter your destination(s), dates and duration and the PackPoint app generates a thorough packing list, taking into account the weather and activities you’ll be doing.
PHONE HOME WhatsApp is known for its free messaging via phone or computer. (The app works over Wi-Fi, so you avoid roaming charges.) And voice calls are impressively clear, which means there’s no excuse not to stay in touch.
TRAVEL BUDDIES Tripr is like a dating app but for travellers. Sign up through Facebook to create a profile and enter your destination and dates. The app will show fellow travellers whose trips overlap with yours, and you swipe right or left to select people you want to meet.
WHAT DO YOU MEAN? Translation apps are getting smarter every day, with visual functions that can instantly translate signs, often in off-line mode (meaning no data charges). Depending on the languages you need, try Google Translate, iTranslate, Waygo or Yandex.Translate.
WORK REMOTELY Co-working spaces and workation retreats are becoming more popular for travellers who want to mix business and pleasure (a.k.a. digital nomads). Check out nomadlist.com and hashtagnomads.com for locations and advice.
COME DINE WITH ME EatWith is Airbnb for diners: Chefs in 150 cities host dinners in their homes or in exclusive venues; diners sign up to fill seats around the table.
It’s a great way to get a delish home-cooked meal.
ONE FOR ALL Some all-inclusive resorts, tour operators and cruises are forgoing the dreaded “solo supplement.” Many restaurants are also upping their solo offerings with “dinner for one” menus, communal tables and more seats at the “full-menu” bar.