Photography, Travel

My First Solo Trip

Solo travel in Cantonese: 獨[duk6] 遊[jau4]

I was in Ottawa, Canada’s capital for a mini getaway. It was my first solo trip and here are some tips for all solo travellers which I think may be useful for all solo travellers out there.

  • Share your itinerary to your family and friends.
    • I created a brief itinerary including accommodation, places I’m going to visit, flight information, and shared it to my family.
    • I shared my Uber trip to my family, so they will know where I’m going and receive notification when I arrived at the destination.
  • Stay on guard all the time.
    • Don’t flash on wealth by exposing your valuables such as wallets, cameras, smartphones, earphones and etc. I think it’s still safe to do it in Canada, especially in the capital, but if you’re ever travelling to less developed countries or places with higher crime rates, always stay low-key.
  • Avoid going to quiet places at night.
    • It’s better to stay with the crowd so even when you’re in danger, there’ll be someone to help (hopefully) when you scream for help
  • Avoid telling people that you’re travelling alone.
    • Don’t let people take advantage of you, especially when you’re travelling in an unfamiliar place. When people ask about my purpose of visit, I usually tell them I’m visiting friends or I came with a companion.
  • Don’t keep all cash in the same place.
    • I put cash in my inside pocket and wallet in my backpack, so you won’t go completely cashless in case of being robbed.
  • Photocopy and have a picture of your photo ID.
    • Just in case if you lost your passport, you will still have something in hand to prove your identity. It’s always safer to have a backup you know!
  • Bring a power bank.
    • Phones are important when you travel alone – for navigations, Uber ride, taking photos, etc. Your phone’s battery exhausts faster during cold weather, so make sure you bring your power bank to keep your phone alive for the whole day.
  • Bring extra batteries for cameras.
    • You would not want to miss the opportunity to take lots of great pictures when you travel alone to document your journey.
  • Don’t be afraid to seek help from strangers.
    • Ask someone for help if you can’t find the place you’re looking for, most Canadians are friendly to lend a helping hand. Someone saw me eating doughnuts and she asked me where’s the store, it is also a good way to imitate a conversation with strangers.
    • Ask the concierge, waitresses and taxi / Uber drivers for local recommendations and hidden gems! Their suggestions are more reliable. My Uber driver told me to visit the Canada Science and Technology Museum which was reopened last year (I wasn’t planning to but I took his advice!), it has lots of new exhibits and kids friendly too!

It has been an awesome 3 nights! It turns out I’m more independent than I thought I am. I never thought I could accomplish so much on my own, especially when I’m the youngest child at home. My family always takes great care of me so I didn’t have to worry much when I travel. This solo trip has made me more capable in taking care of myself and I look forward to more solo trips in the future!!

Click here to know more about my itinerary in Ottawa!

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