For many, travelling alone is an adventure and gives them more time to explore places. In the last few years, there has been a rise in single travellers. So much so, that there are many women who prefer travelling alone these days. A Facebook page of solo travellers from different parts of the world boasts 230,000 members, of which a whopping 63 per cent are women. Many of these women who like to travel on their own believe that it can be an amazing experience as you are your own boss and you do not have to worry about anybody but yourself. Orissa POST interacts with few women from the state who prefer travelling alone.
Cuttack-based Bijoyeeta Das, a working woman, says, “If we can earn our livelihood and be self-dependent, why can’t we travel alone? In fact, travelling solo changes your outlook towards life. Women feel empowered when travelling solo. I enjoy myself more when I travel alone. Gone are the days when women needed help for everything from booking a train ticket to finding an accommodation. In the digital era, your smartphone can take care of all your travel needs.”
“Travel portals for booking flight and train tickets and hotel booking websites are extremely professional these days. They too have realised that more women are travelling solo, hence they have special provisions for women travellers. Many travel portals also assure safety and security to solo women travellers,” she adds.
The surge in the number of solo women travellers can be ascertained from the growing number of women travel bloggers.
“Since childhood, I have always wanted to explore the world. I always wanted to spend life with the locals of different regions of our country. So, I started travelling alone because maybe everyone would not be interested or like the way I travel. India is quite safe for solo travellers. In fact, there are many destinations where I have been either with my family or friends and then revisited alone. The experience was always different every time I travelled alone to those places,” says Rashmi Nayak from Bhubaneswar.
“There’s great satisfaction in travelling alone. It gives my self-confidence a boost and, at the same time, allows me to explore those places the way I want,” she adds.
Bhubaneswar-based fashion choreographer Valentina Mishra says, “Given that I am into a profession where I have to travel alone, I chose to do the same when it comes to holidaying. Many say that people who are lonely travel alone, but that’s a misconception. Solo travellers always make friends during their journeys. It’s an amazing experience making friends while travelling. In fact, when people see a solo traveller, they try to strike up a friendship out of curiosity. Many among them volunteer to help when they see a woman travelling solo. It has happened to me time and time again in different parts of the world and language has never been a barrier.”
“There are also many people who try to learn more about you and your country’s culture from you. At the same time, you can also get a lot to know about their country and culture,” she adds.