Advice From Those Who Have Taken a Solo Trip

Simba's Mom

<font color=green>everything went to "H*** in a ha
Joined
Aug 26, 1999
I've gone on over 25 solo trips, and the first thing I discovered is how unimportant a solo ISN'T. What I mean by that is that no one notices or cares that you're right there and (gasp!) alone! Most families are too busy having fun with their own parties, or they're looking for their favorite character (if you look like Mickey, you may have a little trouble there!). Some people are solo also, maybe just for the day, because their family is sick or doesn't like that park, or that restaurant, or is just plain too tired. So go and have fun-no one's staring.
 

andthenjsaid

Earning My Ears
Joined
May 24, 2019
A most enthusiastic two-thumbs-up to basically everything that has been written so far. I've been to Disney eleventybillion times (ok maybe more like 15) and while it is obviously such a blast to share the experience with friends and family, my first solo trip (doing another one this year!!) was so much fricking fun. Even tiny stuff like stopping to fidget with your shoes, or make a restroom stop, or wander over to look at the ducks, without having to say "hey person I'm with, I'm going to <fill in the blank> for a minute" is SO LIBERATING.

Similar to what someone wrote above, I loved being able to eat at places my family absolutely would never eat - I'm vegan but also have a much broader palette than my family does, so the World was my oyster when I was alone.

I'm a big Disney dork so most of my friends only had a moment of "oh you're going by yourself? Interesting" and then they were jealous that I was going to Disney at all. People care a whole lot less than you'd think. And being seen eating or waiting in line or on a ride alone - no one cares! Everyone is doing their own thing, and even if they do see you alone, so what? I had some of the same "omg people will laugh and stare" thoughts before my trip too - but I was having too much fun to notice, and also those are the kind of people who will always find something to laugh and stare at because they are terrible human beings, so enjoy the fact that you are a fun easy going non-terrible human and GO TO DISNEY!! :)
 

Timandalicia

DIS Veteran
Joined
Apr 2, 2010
Hello all.. long-time lurker, first-time poster, looking for some advice from those who have taken a solo trip. :wave2: I'm considering the trip for sometime in July (avoiding 4th of July crowds, of course). My original intention was to hold out until October, but with the 50th Anniversary hype increasing, I expect crowds around that time to be substantially higher.

I have been to WDW a number of times over the past few years with family members, so I'm fully prepared for fireworks, etc. to be missing from the experience. Truthfully, any bit of Disney will help my current mental state. For the past 13 months, I have been working from home, greatly limiting my exposure to the outside world, doing very little for myself... so even if I'm just sitting on a bench in Epcot taking in the sights & sounds, I'm OK with that! I plan to be fully vaccinated by the end of March. Honestly, the social-distancing measures in Disney are superior to my local supermarket.

I suppose the only thing stopping me from planning this trip is the stigma of going to a theme park alone, mid-pandemic (though, COVID cases have been dropping substantially, and will likely be much better by July). When you all took your first solo trip, did you receive pushback from friends & family, and if so, how did you handle? I am fully prepared for it, but truthfully, the joy and mental-health pickup I know I would receive from this trip greatly outweighs the uncomfortable pushback I expect from those closest to me. If it matters any, I have traveled solo for business a number of times, so I don't expect to get lonely.

Thank you all for your advice! :earsboy:
It is not that unusual and there is no shame in it. Everyone deserves time to themselves for themselves. It is not up to anyone else where that is and I can’t think of a more perfect place.

I think you got it right too. Sitting on a bench. Strolling through the countries. Sitting in front of the castle. Sounds perfect.
 

Lilsia

DIS Veteran
Joined
Feb 17, 2018
I have been going solo for years and went in October. It is so much easier to distance from others when you are by yourself. You can weave in and out of the crowds much easier and sit in the middle of the table so you are as far away from the next person as possible, etc. As far as the stigma, I really don't care what people think. I started going solo when my kids where younger and they stayed home with their dad so I got a bunch of "how can a mom do that" bull crap. It comes from either jealousy or someone who thinks that their way is better then you. I had to explain to several people that if I said that my husband was going on a golf/fishing/camping/whatever trip without us, that no one would blink and eye at it. But as soon as a woman/mom wanted to do that, that meant that I was a horrible, selfish person. Most woman that would say that were the ones who's husbands would not be OK with it. That is their problem, not mine. There are a TON of solo travelers at WDW. You probably did not notice them because you were too busy having fun, just like no one will notice that you are solo. Go and have fun and don't worry about what anyone says or thinks. It's your life, why would you let others decide how you should live it.
 

goodeats

DIS Veteran
Joined
Aug 6, 2005
I ended up going solo in November 2020 after my sister backed out of our planned girls trip for the wine & dine half. I loved it! As a mother of two school aged children these have been trying times, but I was able to put myself first and do what I wanted! I was fine riding solo, waiting in lines, and even dining in nice restaurants. The only time I felt a little lonely was in Epcot on a Saturday night. Lots of groups laughing and having fun. I would probably plan to go to Epcot midweek next time.

In terms of the pandemic - I thought the precautions were fine. Maybe a little over the top and a lot inconsistent (different rules from different cms). I personally didn't miss fireworks or parades, but I know some people do. Dining indoors was great and I'm still here! I did post to FB about my trip and the "silence was deafening" from certain people. But you know what? I don't really care what they think!

The only cons for me were the fact I couldn't split food or snacks. Some of the portions are so large it limited how much I could sample before I got full. Also I wasn't the best about pacing myself. It's so easy to go go go when no one is there to stop you. I got a little worn out towards the end of my trip.
 

Anne Scaffo

Earning My Ears
Joined
Aug 26, 2017
I had to explain to several people that if I said that my husband was going on a golf/fishing/camping/whatever trip without us, that no one would blink and eye at it. But as soon as a woman/mom wanted to do that, that meant that I was a horrible, selfish person.
As a woman who has received many a raised brow, or quizzical face from others when I announce I am traveling solo, I can't believe this thought never occurred to me. Most people are supportive when they hear me out, but, you are right. In my experience it is rare that people question a man going off alone. I mention alone because people tend to understand a girl's weekend, but not my wanting to get away alone.
 
  • disneyseniors

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jun 2, 2014
    I am so envious of all of you!!!
    I would love to try solo at disney, especially this year with ME included.
    I always go with my husband, and we have a great time.
    However, this year he is hesitant to go to disney with the cutbacks, etc, and the mask wearing. But I really want to go in the fall (I know it will be busy). If I can't convince him, I just might try it solo. It sounds fascinating. The comment about eating what you want hit home with me. My husband is not an adventurous eater, and always wants to eat where we always eat. I would love to try something different, but it wont' happen unless I am solo.
    So, you guys go and have fun:)
    maybe one day I will do it too!
     

    WIll C

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    May 19, 2018
    I just got back from my 2nd solo trip. Weather was great. Crowds were busy but not too bad. I got everything I wanted to do done first thing in the morning. No one really pays attention to you being solo and it's easy to just change plans on the spot and go do something else depending on a whim or the crowds or whatever.
    It sucks that some stuff is missing (no parades were the worst for me) and wearing a mask all day long was a real drag but the rides are fun, the food is good and it's still a great experience.
     

    Lilsia

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 17, 2018
    I am so envious of all of you!!!
    I would love to try solo at disney, especially this year with ME included.
    I always go with my husband, and we have a great time.
    However, this year he is hesitant to go to disney with the cutbacks, etc, and the mask wearing. But I really want to go in the fall (I know it will be busy). If I can't convince him, I just might try it solo. It sounds fascinating. The comment about eating what you want hit home with me. My husband is not an adventurous eater, and always wants to eat where we always eat. I would love to try something different, but it wont' happen unless I am solo.
    So, you guys go and have fun:)
    maybe one day I will do it too!
    What is stopping you from going? The way I see it is, I am a grown adult. Even though I am married, it does not mean we can't do things without the other. We are all still individuals with our likes and dislikes and should respect that about each other.
     

    disneyseniors

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jun 2, 2014
    What is stopping you from going? The way I see it is, I am a grown adult. Even though I am married, it does not mean we can't do things without the other. We are all still individuals with our likes and dislikes and should respect that about each other.
    That's a good question, Lilsia! I am older and come from a different generation. I was a teen in the 60;s, and things were different. I guess old habits die hard, LOL. I guess I don't want to hurt my husband's feelings, cause he loves to go to disney, but is hesitant at this time. So, I have alot of confusing feelings going on. If I decide to do it, I will let everyone on here know:)

    I also might add that I am an introverted person anyway. You will probably laugh at this, but I took my very first overnight trip alone to a seminar for work in another town when I was in my 30's. It felt so weird to be alone, but I made it:)
     
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  • Lilsia

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 17, 2018
    That's a good question, Lilsia! I am older and come from a different generation. I was a teen in the 60;s, and things were different. I guess old habits die hard, LOL. I guess I don't want to hurt my husband's feelings, cause he loves to go to disney, but is hesitant at this time. So, I have alot of confusing feelings going on. If I decide to do it, I will let everyone on here know:)

    I also might add that I am an introverted person anyway. You will probably laugh at this, but I took my very first overnight trip alone to a seminar for work in another town when I was in my 30's. It felt so weird to be alone, but I made it:)
    I completely understand that. I was born in 73 and grew up with that mentality too. My Mom would spout these ideas that woman need to do what your husband said, BS. But inside, I knew that was not right. I married a man that sees me as an equal and encouraged me to do what I wanted to do. I would talk to your husband and see how he feels. I bet he does not care if you go. And if he does, you now know the measure of him and have to decide for yourself what you want. I will say that the more you do things on your own, the more natural it feels. Go out to eat on your own, or see a movie when stuff opens back up. I have done all of these things on my own and love it.
     

    Simba's Mom

    <font color=green>everything went to "H*** in a ha
    Joined
    Aug 26, 1999
    That's a good question, Lilsia! I am older and come from a different generation. I was a teen in the 60;s, and things were different. I guess old habits die hard, LOL. I guess I don't want to hurt my husband's feelings, cause he loves to go to disney, but is hesitant at this time. So, I have alot of confusing feelings going on. If I decide to do it, I will let everyone on here know:)

    I also might add that I am an introverted person anyway. You will probably laugh at this, but I took my very first overnight trip alone to a seminar for work in another town when I was in my 30's. It felt so weird to be alone, but I made it:)
    I was also a teen in the 60s and yes.things were VERY different. I'm also introverted, and was kind of surprised when DH and my DS surprised me with my first solo WDW trip. And what's funny is that I feel weird eating out solo at home. Yet in my 25+ solo trips to WDW, I feel very comfortable and will eat (and travel) solo anywhere at the World.
     

    disneyseniors

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jun 2, 2014
    I was also a teen in the 60s and yes.things were VERY different. I'm also introverted, and was kind of surprised when DH and my DS surprised me with my first solo WDW trip. And what's funny is that I feel weird eating out solo at home. Yet in my 25+ solo trips to WDW, I feel very comfortable and will eat (and travel) solo anywhere at the World.
    Wow, maybe there's hope for me afterall, :)
     

    disneyseniors

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jun 2, 2014
    I completely understand that. I was born in 73 and grew up with that mentality too. My Mom would spout these ideas that woman need to do what your husband said, BS. But inside, I knew that was not right. I married a man that sees me as an equal and encouraged me to do what I wanted to do. I would talk to your husband and see how he feels. I bet he does not care if you go. And if he does, you now know the measure of him and have to decide for yourself what you want. I will say that the more you do things on your own, the more natural it feels. Go out to eat on your own, or see a movie when stuff opens back up. I have done all of these things on my own and love it.
    It's not my husband, it's me. He is a very thoughtful person, and I have been on girl trips an d other vacations without him, just not solo. He has never been one of those macho do what I say types, LOL. I just know how much he loves disney too. We have been married 53 years this year, and trust me, if he was that type, we wouldn't have made it to year one:) He would worry about me being alone, but would not mind. It's all on me, and probably guilt feelings because I know how much he loves it. I will probably wait til he can go with me because we always have a great time together, we like to do the same things. We'lll see what happens, but I know that if I want to go, he will say go and have fun, but be safe!
     

    Tinkerlund

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Oct 1, 2016
    I have gone solo to Disney several times and never received any negative comments. But then again the people I surround myself with know I love Disney and that it makes me happy to go there. I usually just get the "oh I wish I could go too", but it's never said in a negative way.

    If you get any negative push back from friends and family just remind them it's for your mental health and happiness. If they still try to make you feel guilty maybe it's time to reconsider the relationships...
     

    loves to dive

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Aug 21, 2011
    I've been to WDW solo many times and I love it. I sort of alternate going solo and going with my adult son, he and I have been going since he was just shy of 3 and he is 40 now. For me, solo is just relaxing. As others have said, the fact that you can stop and look at that flower or eat guac. and margaritas for lunch (in all fairness I do that with my son along as well), get up as early as you want, whatever you want is priceless. As far as going during the pandemic, it is all up to your comfort level. I would have gone way back when they first opened up but hubby wasn't thrilled with it so I didn't. Note, I have a hubby but he doesn't like to travel, I do so I travel solo a lot. It gives him time alone to be smelly, loud and lazy as much as he wants and gives me time to myself, which is important to me. I have never asked his permission to do anything, and yes I was born in the late 50s and grew up in all that era but had a very independent Mom and learned how to do so very early in my life. As far as what other people think, I really don't care. I'm going in mid-April solo. I've had my first shot, won't have my second until I get back but will be taking all the precautions. Masks, hand sanitizer, hand wipes, washing hands a lot, probably not eating indoors but you never know, just being a little extra careful.
     

    ScubaCat

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    May 12, 2008
    As far as going during the pandemic, it is all up to your comfort level. I would have gone way back when they first opened up but hubby wasn't thrilled with it so I didn't. Note, I have a hubby but he doesn't like to travel, I do so I travel solo a lot. It gives him time alone to be smelly, loud and lazy as much as he wants and gives me time to myself, which is important to me. I have never asked his permission to do anything, and yes I was born in the late 50s and grew up in all that era but had a very independent Mom and learned how to do so very early in my life. As far as what other people think, I really don't care. I'm going in mid-April solo. I've had my first shot, won't have my second until I get back but will be taking all the precautions. Masks, hand sanitizer, hand wipes, washing hands a lot, probably not eating indoors but you never know, just being a little extra careful.
    This is almost exactly my life in reverse, except my wife was more than happy to get me out of the house early August :laughing:. Usually I travel quarterly for work (gone a couple of weeks at a time), so without those breaks, I've taken these solo Disney trips which will probably be an annual tradition. I'm going back solo the 2nd week of April. I got my first shot this past Wednesday but I'll still have my KN95 on for the flight (especially the airports, which are the scariest part to me) and will take the usual precautions everywhere else. I'm also going solo for the 50th (the week surrounding 10/1) simply because I want to be there for it.
     

    Marie5656

    Earning My Ears
    Joined
    Apr 6, 2021
    Last time I went I traveled solo. And am planning to do it again. I am a pretty independant person, and liked making my own plans. Plus, I got to meet and chat with a lot of people..waiting in lines, or waiting for parades. Would have probably not had so many nice contacts if I had been with others. Plus, If I make plans, and change my mind last minute..I do not worry about putting someone out.
     


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