You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Don't be afraid of traveling solo

The News-Star (Monroe) logoThe News-Star (Monroe) 9/13/2019 Dianne Newcomer, Monroe News Star

I was in college when Three Dog Night's "One"  hit the Top 10 Billboard Chart and stayed there for weeks. The minute those haunting repetitious F minor chords started, we all knew those powerfully sad words that were to follow: "One is the loneliest number that you'll ever do..." 

How so very 1960-ish those words seem today! Yet, in all fairness to the musical tastes of my generation, how ever could we dream of growing old in a world where everyone walks around with a computer/phone glued to their hand and being  "alone" is a virtual impossibility?

Thanks to technology today, "one" is definitely a fleeting commodity. Think about it. We have little or no downtime when we are truly alone — and that is sad. Being alone is good for us.  It helps fuel our souls and energize our lives. We become more productive and more creative. Still, I do realize, "one" does have its drawbacks. For example, in my travel industry, a single has double the expense as they must absorb the entire cost of a cruise cabin or a hotel room.

Then, of course, there is the fear of the unknown when traveling as "one." Dealing with foreign languages, a different currency, a new setting, meeting people, getting to your hotel alone, eating by yourself, and worrying about your personal safety in a strange place are all real and often crippling concerns when there is no one to share or laugh about the challenges with, but wait!  There is some good news on the horizon:  you are not alone anymore; solo travel has arrived!

Solo travel has very quickly become one of the fastest growing segments in the travel market today, and, please understand, this catch term applies to single travelers of all ages, no matter your gender, marital status, or age. At Monroe Travel Service, we represent some of the top tier travel companies who have stepped up to meet the demands of the solo traveler, so, if you are ready to get out there and discover the magic in our world, then let's do it.  Here are just a few of the leaders in solo travel today:

  1. NORWEGIAN CRUISE LINE was actually the first cruise line to welcome the single traveler. It started back in 2010, when NCL  introduced their Studio Class staterooms to the travel industry.  These specially designed cabins, which were also priced specifically for the single traveler, first debuted on the EPIC.  Not only did they offer solo travelers considerable savings, but they created a situation where, thanks to a dedicated lounge space, singles could gather and socialize throughout the day. This revolutionary concept targeting a specific market has become so popular that it is now offered on 7 of their ships, including the beautiful little GETAWAY, which, by the way, makes a 7 day run from New Orleans. Singles,  if you are ready to see the world and have no buddy to travel with, there is no need to stay home alone (especially during the holidays).  The seas of our world are waiting, so just come by my travel agency for a free brochure and see where your next adventure could be!
  2. For singles 18-35 years of age who want to travel to almost every exotic place on our planet, then, I would suggest CONTIKI TOURS. This highly respected tour company reported that 56% of their customers traveled unaccompanied last year.  Of course, they are willing to match travelers with roommates at no additional cost or you can also opt to have your own room for a slightly higher price. What our young singles especially like about the CONTIKI program is how they allow their travelers to create a profile and chat with fellow tour members before they take off!  Yes, thanks to this social media approach, you quickly beome  "one" with the group and have a choice of over  350 tours across 6 continents to experience. With a CONTIKI tour, It is not just where you go that will get you hooked, it is who you are traveling that makes the difference.  Travelers join these tours from all over the world and that only adds to the fun.  For a hassle free, age specific experience oriented escorted tour, think CONTIKI. ( I have it on good authority, their tour guides know where all the best clubs in the city are, too, so their journeys are not all about castles and churches!)
  3. G ADVENTURES is a small group adventure travel operator that I love. They offer "regular" tours but, if you are a solo traveler who wants to live, taste, try, learn, and bring what you have to offer to our world, then, maybe, you should come by my office at Monroe Travel Service, grab a free brochure, and  see where you want to be in 2020. Their tours are designed for travelers who are willing to step off the beaten path, embrace the unexpected and be immersed in the extraordinary. Because my sister teaches, I sent my brother-in-law on their small group Victoria Falls/Botswana trip, and he loved it.   Every trip is guaranteed to go--even if it is just you and the guide--so your vacation is set. Plus, they offer hiking, biking, wellness, camping, local family stays, river running, multisport, trekking, sailing, and even family  trips to over 100 countries. Age and experience are irrelavant.

Don't be worried about traveling the world on your own. When companies like CONTIKI and G ADVENTURES tell us that over 55% of their travelers are solo travelers, then, you must realize  "One" is not the loneliest number any more!

Have no regrets! Go everywhere. Meet everyone. Do everything. Our planet is waiting for you to play. You may be alone, but, in the world of travel, you will never be lonely!

a close up of a mountain: With a group of fellow "solo travelers," local traveler Marsha Davis stands amazed at the grand archeological site of Machu Picchu in Peru, which was also a part of an Amazon River cruise/tour. This ladies only singles trip is operated by Gutsy Women Travel, one of the leading solo tour companies we sell at Monroe Travel Service. © Courtesy photo With a group of fellow "solo travelers," local traveler Marsha Davis stands amazed at the grand archeological site of Machu Picchu in Peru, which was also a part of an Amazon River cruise/tour. This ladies only singles trip is operated by Gutsy Women Travel, one of the leading solo tour companies we sell at Monroe Travel Service.

Dianne Newcomer is a travel advisor at Monroe Travel Service, 1908 Glenmar Avenue, just off Tower Drive and No. 19th.  For your next vacation, call 318 323 3465 or email info@monroetravel.com for an appointment or a free brochure on your travel plans  for 2020.

This article originally appeared on Monroe News Star: Don't be afraid of traveling solo

AdChoices

More From The News-Star (Monroe)

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon