10 Annoying Travel Questions


10 Questions to Stop Asking Me and Other Solo Female Travelers

Every time people find out where I've been, what I've seen, and how much I've traveled, they immediately start asking questions. And sometimes they flatter me with nice compliments about my bravery, my determination, and my free spiritedness. When did I become a free spirit? Or brave? And while I've been happy to answer some questions, there are some questions that I keep hearing that I am sick of. So let me answer these questions once and for all.

10. Are you secretly rich? Nope. And with the amount of traveling that I do my bank account will eventually show how not rich I am. But I think this annoys me more because people are still under the impression that only the rich can travel, which is not true. I've just chosen to live my life a certain way to afford to travel, and I have to give credit to my amazingly supportive family as well.

9. Are you looking to meet someone? Nope nope nope nope nope. I didn't decide to travel through Europe because I ran out of dating options in the US. I travel not to meet someone but to meet people, to see a culture, to discover history. So no, I did not fly all this way to find a man.

8. Do you ever work? While I would love to say no, I actually do work. The reason why I moved away is because I could not imagine that the rest of my life was just going to be about work. And the more I think of it the more I just want to spend my life traveling the world and not working, but I have to be realistic sometimes. But the benefits of living in France and working in education is that I get a break every six weeks, so while it doesn't look like I work often, I do actually work. I mean I have to in order to afford my lifestyle.

Buckingham Palace, London
7. Don't you get lonely? Yes and no. I would love to travel with people when they have to opportunity, but I am completely content with traveling by myself. The only time that I do feel awkward and lonely is when I have to eat alone at a restaurant. But I think it's in human nature to get lonely every once and a while. But I don't like to look at it as a sign of weakness and the reason why I shouldn't travel alone, I just see it as one of the not so glorious aspects of solo travel.

6. Isn't it dangerous? I would to pretend that I am Simba from The Lion King and say "I laugh in the face of danger, ha ha ha ha!" But that's not the truth. And the reality is that in the world we live in today, anything can be dangerous. And for many of the cities that I have gone to, traveling by myself in them has been no more dangerous than driving my car to work. But I believe that me going alone in any of these cities has been any more dangerous than traveling to them with others.

5. You must be an extrovert. Right? Ha ha no! Anyone who knows me knows how shy, awkward, and introverted I am. So me going up to a group of strangers in a foreign country is a whole lot of nope for me. But in order to travel, you don't need to be an extrovert. You still meet people and you get by without any problems. It's one of those travel myths that needs to be busted. Introverts can travel too.

4. Why are you alone? Because I can. Because I really wanted to see this city and had the opportunity. Because you don't need to travel in groups. Because why not? I think this one frustrates me so much because of the negative connotation associated with being alone. I don't see anything that's wrong with being alone. And I've said it many times, while I would love to travel with my friends and family, I am not going to wait around for others to decide. If they want to come with me on my adventure, cool. If they don't want to, then that's cool too, but I'm still going.

3. Are you ever going to settle down? Why does my dating life matter in this conversation? I didn't know that we still lived in the 19th Century where women had to marry young. I'm 23! Settling down is still a weird idea to me at this moment in my life. Fortunately we live in a world where it's acceptable for women to marry older. And why does settling down have to mean quitting my travels. Maybe I can find someone and still travel. But please stop asking this question and is not important in my life right now.

The Duomo, Florence
2. Do you like being alone? Are you calling me a loner? Are you implying that I should love being surrounded by people 24/7? Yes, sometimes I like my quiet time and traveling does give me that. But no I do not like being alone all the time. After my introvert binges, I decide that I need to be around people again and do just that. And after being with people too much I need some quiet introvert time to myself. Traveling is one of the ways that I can indulge the introvert within, and I don't see it as a bad thing. So stop implying that being alone is sad.

1. Couldn't you find anyone to go with you? Wow you make it sound like I have no friends! And I have some very good friends thank you very much. This is the most annoying question because it sounds like I am social outcast that can't find any friends. Or it sounds like I am the worst friend ever and can't even get my own friends to visit a city with me. So stop thinking that solo travels are lonely and sad and depressing. They're liberating, refreshing, and fun.

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