I speak frequently with friends, and readers about what holds them back from traveling. Often I hear "I want to go to X place, but no one I know will go with me." There's no question, this is a huge barrier to travel!
I get it, it's not like you're some socially awkward person who never managed to make a friend, you just don't have friends who can travel with you at the moment. So you want to travel, and meet people to go with, without seeming like some person who's desperate and lonely.
So, what's a travel-lusting girl to do? Meet some travel buddies! Here's a few ways to do so!
1. Join Travel Facebook groups
One, you should join these groups because they fill your newsfeed with travel inspiration, are a great resource to ask travel questions pertaining to your specific destination (eg. what's the best way to get from Cancun to Merida that is safe?) and these girls share the funniest videos and news articles. Oh plus, I'm in them, so I'll see yeh around the comments there! Also they're filled thousands of like-minded, travel-lusting ladies! There's frequent posts asking who's in X city, and meet ups with group members are common! Here's some of my favourites!
Pssst, all these groups are for the ladies only, which is great because then you won't have some creepers offering to "travel" with you, when really they have something else in mind.
- Girls LOVE Travel (This is, without a doubt, my favourite travellers Facebook group! It's massive with over 20,000 members, so there's always someone in your destination, or has experience and has been there before!)
- Girls vs Globe
- Groups specific to your travel location. Search "Your travel location" "expats" or (primarily in Europe) "au pairs" These people are also from other countries, and would love to meet others to grab coffee or tourist with!
2. Book a tour catering to your travel age/stage
There's many great travel companies out there which organize tours for a variety of demographics. Don't worry, the ones I've linked will have young people like you on the tours, it won't be a bus full of seniors. Tour companies organize trips varying from a few days, to a few months. Some tours are fast paced and speed you through the important destinations, while others take a slower approach to travel. Pick the one that feels best for you.
Oh, and I should mention, these tours are filled with others who are joining the tour solo. There might be a few people with a friend on the tour, but that's a little more rare. Quite literally every other person on the tour joined to meet similar travellers, and to have a blast with new friends in a new place. You'll be amazed by how many people you meet which you just click with because you're both the type to chase your travel dreams! And those type of people tend to get along extremely well!
3. Book a social type of accommodation
"What's a social type of accommodation Paige?" "Great question! I'm so glad you asked!"
- Hostels (and no, they're not all dirty, and full of Kumbaya singers. There's some really nice hostels out there, I show you how to pick one in this post!)
- Hostels have common rooms and bars which breed a social atmosphere! They also organize events (BBQs, pub crawls, quiz nights) which are intended to get you interacting with others!
- Some AirBnB's you can rent out a persons full apartment/house. If you're looking to meet people, stray away from these, and book one where the host will be staying there at the same time. They're often happy to chat with you around the house, tell you about the best places in a city to hit, and maybe even grab a drink or dinner with you!
- Pssst, click through this link for $20 off your first AirBnB stay!
- You can use couch surfing in two ways. 1. To actually sleep on someone's couch. 2. To just connect with people who live in the area you're visiting, and meet up! You can message with people in the area you're heading and organize a get together even if you don't want to actually sleep on their couch. Though maybe you'll become besties, and have a slumber party, who knows.
Don't let the fact it's the Gap Year website fool you, on the forum there's others who are traveling who are not on a gap year who post their trip location and dates, and are looking for cool people like YOU to travel with!
This is similar to the Travel Mates forum, just with 600,000+ members, and you can just get more specific with the search function to find fellow travellers by date, location, gender, age, etc. You can meet people who are traveling to the destination, or who are locals. Visit TravBuddy here!
6. Join Remote Year
Since I've learned about Remote Year, I just must promote it, because it's SO freaking cool! You, and a bunch of other young people spending 1 year together, in a new city each month, becoming lifelong friends, and working remote jobs while you travel. Whattttt? Yeah, the greatest thing ever. I know!
In order to join remote year you need to secure a job that allows you to live remotely. They have links on their website to websites that have job listings for just that!
7. Book a food/cooking tour
Want to go to a restaurant for dinner? Don't want to awkwardly sit by yourself?
Book a food tour, so you can taste test all the food offerings in your location with a guide, and other travellers! Also, this is a great opportunity to chat over a meal with someone, to potentially hang out with them later. Cooking tours are similar, just you learn to cook the food, and then eat it as opposed to restaurant hopping.
8. Study Abroad
In case I haven't beaten you over the head for long enough now with how freaking amazing studying abroad is yet, I'll do it once more, you know, just for good measure.
If you are in university at the moment, or even some high schools offer study abroad too, GO STUDY ABROAD ... right meow! No questions, just do it. You WILL thank me later, and have the greatest semester/year of your life. Be warned, it's going to be so great, you'll have travel withdrawals later. But still, it's worth it.
Everybody on exchange goes solo, and therefore is superrrr open to making friends! Plus the locals will love you and your adorable accent! You're going to make so many darn friends on every occasion, just because people want to talk to you to hear your accent.
I have so many study abroad posts, I don't know where to start.
- This post where I quash your 'can I/do I qualify to study abroad?' doubts
- This post where I let you snoop into my bank account and see exactly, down to the last penny how much study abroad cost me, and will likely cost you
- This post where I tell you about getting into grad school abroad
- This post where I talk about what to do if you want to study abroad and are currently in a relationship
- These posts where I interviewed 5 girls about their study abroad experiences, and they give you their tips, and info on their study abroad location.
Volunteering is a fabulous way to meet others while on the road! Not to mention, they're likely the good-hearted kind, which is the type of people we want to befriend, right? Plus, volunteering produces good karma. Win, win all around!
10. Language Classes
Don't know the language? No problem! Language classes are common around the world, and of course whoever is in them will be just as clueless about the local language as you are. As English is the most common language around the world, you're likely to bump into some other English speakers in your class who you can organize getaways with!
Alrighty, now you are set for a travel partner, tell me, where did you previously want to travel to, but didn't because you had no one to go with?
Where is next on your bucket list that you'll visit now you are prepared to find that travel buddy?!
Of course, as always, you might know I LOVE interacting and hearing from my readers and other bloggers! Have a question, hoping for a specific blog post that hasn't been written yet, want to show me a funny round-the-world dance video compilation you loved? Perrrrfect! I invite you to send me an email anytime friend! email@example.com. Seeya round the inbox!