Guide to Travelling Solo Abroad
None of your friends want to teach English as a foreign language. They don’t want to go abroad and if you want to pursue your travel dreams then you have no choice but to go alone. Travelling around the world on your own to teach English abroad is a brave thing to do. Not because it’s too dangerous but because you have to trust in yourself that you will be fine.
And you will be.
Solo travelling is a wonderful challenge that will give you the opportunity to not only grow but you will be forced to learn to rely upon yourself rather than others. Travelling solo will push you completely out of your comfort zone and make you realize just how incredible you can be once you’re given the chance to show what you can do.
Perhaps what scares you about travelling abroad alone is that you’ll be lonely. There will of course be occasions when pangs of loneliness may hit you – we won’t lie, there’s a likelihood that is true. However, by travelling to teach English as a TEFL teacher, you are bound to meet people. Being alone means you’re more likely to meet people and make friends than if you had gone with your own friends or with your partner.
Will I Get Lonely?
Travelling as a couple can strengthen your relationship but it can create a barrier to getting to know other people. The assumption is that you would want to spend all of your free time with your other half so you would therefore receive less invitations to go out. If you’re travelling alone and teaching English in a school, then all of the other teachers would feel inclined to make you feel welcome by inviting you to get to know them.
If you’re not teaching English as a foreign language in a school and are instead supporting yourself by teaching English online then you can still meet plenty of people while travelling solo. After hanging out alone in a café as a foreigner enough times, people would eventually get curious to know more of your story and will want to strike a conversation with you. Be open to the questions and accept any invitations that come your way to hang out.
Is it Safe for Single Woman to Teach English Abroad?
Female English teachers working abroad are often thought of as vulnerable targets when travelling alone. The primary job markets for English teachers are in large cities in peaceful countries where there are strong economies and infrastructures in place. Yes, in certain countries, women have to be aware of the local laws but this does not make the country unsafe to work in as a single woman.
Travel Where you Want
As a solo traveller, you make all of the decisions and one of the benefits to teaching English abroad is being able to travel. Whether you’re teaching English online and working remotely or if you’re working a full-time job as an ESL teacher, in your spare time you are free to travel and explore wherever you want. You don’t have to adjust your wants to adhere to someone else’s whims. You can even bring your work with you as you travel and not have to be concerned your work commitments will hamper someone else’s good time.
Working to Your Own Schedule
The benefits of supporting yourself through teaching English online is that you work to your own schedule and this is especially true when you’re travelling alone. Travelling as a couple might mean that you’re trying to work to your partner’s schedule so that you can both have the same time off.
Easier to Learn the Language
You’ve gone to teach English as a foreign language in the country you’ve travelled to, but wouldn’t it also be a nice challenge and skill to pick up if you could learn the local language while there. If you’re travelling alone then you will probably find it easier to do that than if you were travelling with friends or as a couple. The reason why is because you wouldn’t have the availability of having someone you know to speak English with. Communicating with the locals will allow you to integrate more into your surroundings and you’ll have so much more fun and feel a lot more comfortable on your solo travels.
Taking time to travel and teach English abroad can be a rewarding career path and an enriching time of your life full of self-fulfilment. All of which is even more true if you do it alone as you embark on an individual journey of self-discovery. While the thought of travelling alone to become a TEFL teacher can sound daunting, and maybe even beyond your capabilities, it is not. It is an experience that may define you and a time that you may look back on fondly. You may only get one chance to travel and teach English abroad before life commitments stop you from doing so. Remember that the greatest regrets in life are the risks that we were too afraid to take.