Solo travel in Southeast Asia is nowhere near as daunting as it sounds. So many people do it and there are so many companies, hostels and tours that accommodate solo travellers, giving you a platform to meet other like-minded travellers en route. Solo travelling Southeast Asia, in my opinion, is one of the best destinations to do it in. It's filled with so much colour, culture and adventure... you just need to dedicate a little extra time for planning so that you feel confident.
It may sound silly, but it's very easy to want to travel in as many countries as you possibly can, even if you only have a short amount of time in Southeast Asia. Quality over quantity. It's better to really explore fewer places over longer amounts of time than it is to squeeze all of SE Asia into one itinerary!
If you want peace and quiet, maybe opt for a small, single sex dorm. Single sex dorms are also great for a bit of extra privacy; a room of girls aren't going to bat an eyelid at a bra! If you want maximum encounters and party vibes, try a large, mixed dorm. Mixed dorm rooms allow you to socialise with every single type of person. Make sure to book in advance if you have a real preference!
Another tip for solo travel in Southeast Asia is to maximise the cheap public transport for domestic travel. Buses and train tickets are readily available for travelling around Asia and won't cost you extra as you are only purchasing your own ticket either way. Obviously it's nicer to hop in a cool (on time) taxi, so if that's you're preferred mode of transport, it's time to buddy up!
Do as the locals do and eat the street food! You'll spend a lot of money if you try to eat a western diet in Southeast Asia. One of my top tips for solo travel in Southeast Asia is to haggle. Prices are less fixed here than they are in the UK or the west. Put your bargaining powers to good use and see if you can get yourself a better deal!
If we want to keep travelling around beautiful parts of the world, we have a responsibility to look after it. Top tips for ethical travel include… Leave no trace – clean up all your rubbish.Avoid animal exploitation (rides, shows, etc.). Avoid human exploitation (trips to ‘watch the locals’ in a village, etc.). Be aware of voluntourism and check that the money you put into volunteering goes to the locals.