Traveling solo is a freeing experience for most travelers, from deciding exactly what you want to do, to becoming self aware about yourself and the role you have in the world. It can lead to some heavy internalization and reflection, when you are solely thinking about yourself and the experience you are having. One of best parts of traveling solo is the potential to meet anybody! I keep seeing these travel stories where people meet their soulmates, best friends, business partners, etc once they set off on these journeys.Putting yourself out there is still one of the hardest things to do, but the courage it took to book that solo trip and travel across the world is the same courage you’re going to use to reach out and make those lifelong connections. To this day the people that I met during my 6 month solo travel experience still remain some of my closest people to date #BarcelonaCrew.
Talk to the Staff
This is usually my first go-to, the staff at hostels are not there to just check you into your dorm, they are there because they are probably the most outgoing, kind, and experienced person about where you are visiting. I can’t tell you the countless times a hostel staff member has shown me new places to go and explore. Most of the time they let me know what’s what and who’s who and I’ve usually just asked where do they hang out usually and I’ve been fortunate enough for them to invite me along!
Go to the Bar!
If the hostel you are visiting has a bar, then go visit it! Even if you are not a drinker, sit at the bar and just say hi to people who are coming to buy drinks. Since this is a hostel bar most people are very open to having spontaneous conversation. I kid you not, every time I’ve sat at a hostel bar I’ve ended up in random conversation with multiple travelers at a time. It’s like all the solo travelers gravitate towards each other!
Do the Group Activities
Most hostels have a social agenda for everyday, it could be themed, it can be just a pub crawl, but this is usually an opportunity to do something in a group setting whether it be doing a pub crawl or a cooking class. You are certain to find travelers just like yourself looking to make connections with people.
Talk to your Roommates!
The best way to make friends is definitely talking to your roommates, I know not everybody is comfortable just straight up introducing yourself, but I promise it's not as scary as you think. Literally just walk in, put your bag down and say hello! Start asking them some questions about themselves like “like where they’re from” and “how long they’re staying for”. Side note: People love to talk about themselves!
So if you are contemplating solo travel or hotel living, you now know how to interact and find others so that you won’t be talking to yourself the entire trip!