5 Essentials for Solo Travel

solo travel essentials

Essentials for Solo Travel

If you’ve never traveled solo before, what exactly are you waiting for?

Honestly, traveling alone is one of the best ways to get to know new places, people, and cultures. Being as connected as we are in 2021, it’s also not as intimidating as you might think.

Solo adventures, whether they consist of a relaxing holiday on an isolated beach paradise, or something more daring like trekking the Inca Trail or exploring the volcanoes of Iceland, can be some of the most enriching experiences of your life.

Since you will be traveling alone, however, packing just the right items is paramount. Luckily, we’ve put together this list of the five essentials that you should take with you.

solo travel backpack

1. Backpack Essentials

Firstly, selecting the right backpack is key. You’ll be using it every day, so you want something that’s comfortable to wear but durable and waterproof.

Once you’ve got your perfect backpack sorted, it’s time to think about what to fill it with.

A document folder is something that lots of travelers don’t think about, but it’s actually a staple. It’s so convenient to have all your documentation in one place – no more dumping the contents of your backpack on the airport floor as you search for your boarding pass!

solo travel map

A refillable water bottle is also a must; it will keep you hydrated throughout both your adventure and the journeys you take to reach your destination. Plus, if you pack an insulated bottle, you’ll be able to enjoy hot and ice-cold drinks too.

Sealable plastic bags will keep all your odds and ends neatly stored away in one place, ensure your shampoo and shower gel doesn’t explode all over your laptop, and even keep your chargers and cable leads from getting tangled up. There are plenty of sustainable alternatives to Ziploc bags too, so if being eco-friendly is high on your list of priorities, check out brands like ECOFRESH and GreenPolly.

2. Technology Essentials

It sounds obvious, but always remember to pack a portable charger for your phone or tablet. Having a fully charged device can really bring you peace of mind on a solo trip and, if you’re planning to use your phone to take photos and plan your routes, having a power bank in your backpack will keep you going all day.

travel photography camera

Speaking of taking photos, it’s a good idea to pack a separate camera with a stash of SD cards so you can take all the photos you want during your trip.

If you’ll be on the road (or in the air) a lot during your travels, it’s also a good idea to invest in a decent set of noise-canceling headphones. Go for the best quality that you can afford as you’ll soon find that you’ll get more than enough use out of them.

3. Entertainment Essentials

Factor in how you’ll be spending your downtime on your trip, as well as all the exciting things you’re lining up to see and experience. There’s nothing worse than being stuck on a long-haul flight with nothing to keep you entertained.

headphones travel

In most cases, bringing your laptop will be enough to distract and entertain you. The power of today’s gaming technology can connect you to a vast range of immersive gaming experiences all from your humble laptop. There are online games out there for everyone.

If you enjoy the thrill of casinos, choose popular online slot game titles Age of the Gods or Millionaires Island. If tournament games are more your thing, both Fortnite and PUBG can even be played on your smartphone as well as your laptop.

A portable speaker is a must too, especially if you’ll be camping during your trip. There are tons of options out there, from budget USB-connected devices to top-of-the-range Bluetooth speakers. Unlike headphones, however, you probably won’t get as much use out of a speaker so don’t worry about splashing out on a Bang & Olufsen model.

4. Safety Essentials

It’s smart to prioritize your well-being on a solo trip. After all, you can never be too prepared when you’re packing.

eAlarms are super-convenient – small enough to take up minimal space in your backpack, but universally recognized in emergencies.

travel first aid

It might be a no-brainer but always remember to pack a first aid kit. Stock it well with antihistamines, band-aids, antibacterial wipes, antiseptic ointment, gauze, safety scissors, and bandages, and keep it in your backpack at all times.

Meanwhile, travel locks – particularly TSA-Approved ones – will keep your belongings safe and secure as you travel and in your hotel or hostel room. The great thing about TSA-approved locks is that airport staff have to relock your case before they can remove their keys during an inspection. Plus, if your bag has been opened or inspected the lock will flash green to let you know.

5. Holiday Essentials

And finally, don’t forget to pack those holiday essentials such as local guidebooks, maps, phrasebooks, and small denominations of local currency.

adventure travel checklist

Start your solo travel adventure today

You can find our global solo travel safety guide here for the safest countries to travel to.

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Amy Pritchett

Amy Pritchett

If you truly love nature like me, you will find beauty everywhere.

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