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r/solotravel
248
Posted by2 months ago

Solo travel post cancelled engagement

I’m 35F and recently single after a LTR of 4 years (Engaged 1 year). It’s been over a month and been doing a lot of work on myself with getting therapy, praying, meditating, podcasts and Reddit peeps.

I’m currently trying to plan a solo trip to Paris. My ex never wanted to travel and just hated a lot of things I liked. I’m a hopeless romantic at heart. I’ve always wanted to travel and visit Paris, I think it’s the hopeless romantic girl in me. Call it my Eat, Pray, Love trip, but I want to go because if I don’t and wait for someone to go with me, it will never happen. I’m trying to get my groove back and just find myself again. There’s a saying I’ve recently heard “if you’re going to be sad, be sad in Paris!”. I’m thinking of going Thanksgiving week. I’m a teacher and I’ll be off that week. Any tips or ideas? I’m on a budget since all my money was going towards the wedding but do have some savings.

I’m thinking about staying at a hostel and get a single room since it seems it will be cheaper and I heard you can meet other solo travelers. I’m not trying to meet any men, just people to connect with and even possibly going through the same experience. Any tips or places you’ve stayed at, places you recommend are safe to stay at as a women.

Another note I wanted to include, I’m a Spanish speaking brown skinned Latina plus sized woman. I’m also wondering how the plan ride will be traveling over 8 hours. Also how people treat POC plus size women in Europe. Anyone travel with Air France? 😬

175 comments
89% Upvoted
level 1

air france is wonderful. flying into cdg is fine but out, just give yourself a lot of time cos cdg is mayhem. i’m asian & been to paris/france several times & you’ll be fine. there’s metros/buses if you get tired of walking but the charm is walking everywhere since there’s a cafe/bar/restaurant that you may like based on what you see. learn some basic french words & you’ll fine since they’ve adapted to the brits visiting. paris can be a bit more reserved than anywhere else in france. overall, read up on when the markets are, they quite lively & great way to get a vibe of paris. lots to see, eat, & smell. i usually like to walk along the siene & cut into wherever i need to go. paris is very walkable & a metropolitan city. you shouldn’t be afraid to stick out cos there’s a mix of ppl walking & going about their business

85
level 2

CDG is so unpredictable. I had a very early flight and was there before the crowds and luckily navigated my way around quick enough because before I knew it, without warning there was tsunami of people behind me

I kind of love the thrill going to a new airport brings. I’m Irish and fly out of Dublin so I felt like I was ready for anything…I wasn’t.

16
level 1

While I have no advice to offer in regards to Paris. I too have recently broken up from a long term relationship (5 years). And I'm also going on my first l international solo trip ever. I'm super excited about it!

I recommend you only tell people that you know without a doubt will be excited for you. Being in such a fragile emotional state it's another heartbreak if someone begins telling you all the reasons they think it's a bad idea. This is just a reflection of them and thier fears, try to not take it personally if this does happen.

As far as being plus size and air travel... I agree with getting compression socks. They're very helpful. Also ask the flight attendant as you're boarding if you can get a safety belt extender. I found it really embarrassing to already be in my seat before realizing I needed an extra inch (or three). Have to then ask the attendant, while everyone else is already settled, and can listen. Better to have it, realize you may not need it and hand it back.

Also, Air France was great! Loved my experience with them.

I'm also having so much fun figuring out my vacation outfits!!! Keep that enthusiasm up! Good luck!

76
level 2

Yes compression socks are amazing. I’m not plus sized but fly often and swell badly. They’re life changing.

16
level 2
Op · 2 mo. ago

Thanks so much for your recommendations and also sharing your experience. Where are you going on your first solo trip?

6
level 2

Omg me too!!!! And I'm going to Paris in September for a solo trip hoping to fill my cup and feel happiness.

5
level 1

Go to Paris. In my experience, it’s not as “romantic,” as people make it out to be. But, the city does have a magic to it. (I can not put into words.), It is dirty and some French people are rude/impatient. Oh well, their problem, not mine. As a person of color, I didn’t have an issue. Not to dismiss or diminish, anyone else’s experience. Honestly, unless you are a dark skinned Latina, or have a “middle eastern,” (Read: Arabic.), look to you. I don’t think you will have an race issue.

94
level 2

This is my experience too. If you ask for directions, it Will be hard to find someone to give them to you.

I didn't have the romantic feel but I really loved going to the museums and love walking there.

I didn't enjoy so much the sacre coeur area. Be careful if someone comes with a clipboard asking to speak with you. It is a scam.

Edit: i forget to mention, but there is a very big portuguese community in Paris. So maybe Spanish can help you. When i am there and i speak portuguese or show my id, there is always a portuguese person that makes me feel at home.

23
level 2

I agree! It certainly isn't exactly like the romance movies, but it does have some sparkle in the air.

4
level 2
Op · 2 mo. ago

I’m a brown skinned Latina, I do speak Spanish so I’m hoping this helps me when I’m there.

7
level 1

I think if the idea of Paris makes you happy you should go to Paris! I think you could make it a great trip. If you are in a fragile state emotionally, I would plan activities for every day. I recommend Paris Walks, they have great themed walks in different neighborhoods and you don't have to book in advance. Also would recommend an eating tour. Great way to be with people even if you're traveling alone.

I went to Paris and Amsterdam solo a few years back in early December and yes it was cold but it was super fun. I left Amsterdam early and felt so much happier as soon as I got to Paris. They'll be getting into pre-christmas decorations because they don't do Thanksgiving and it will be very festive. I recommend the 7th arrondissement because you are right near the Eiffel Tower. Or the 5th/6th are nice. For just a week, I would try to stay close in.

Have a great time.

14
level 2
Op · 2 mo. ago

Thank you 🥹❤️‍🩹

5
level 2

If you can stay in the 6th. That’s right downtown.

1
level 1

Paris is such a cool city! I went over Thanksgiving break too and didn't mind the cold. I highly recommend taking an Uber jump bike and riding it all over the city!! It's a cheap and super fun way to see all the beautiful buildings! I also took a double decker tour bus that drove around all of the historical buildings and had audio descriptions of every corner and every bit of history. Also the Catacombs are impossibly badass. Have fun! You deserve it!!

11
level 2
Op · 2 mo. ago

Thanks so much! I’ll definitely be adding this to my list of Paris things to do.

1
level 1
· 2 mo. ago

I traveled solo to Paris okt 2021, it was awesome. Safe, fun and so beutiful. I was 35 and I'm female.

6
level 1

Sounds good. Just be sure that your focus is on sites and activities, not other couples around you.

If you're not moving around, look into an Airbnb. That will ensure that you have a private space if you need it. You could do walking tours, day trips, even a cooking class or wine tasting for the social component.

You could also go the "Under the Tuscan Sun"(movie, not the book) and join a tour.

13
level 2
Op · 2 mo. ago

I was looking into tours too! And a cooking class would be awesome, I’ll learn how to make something. I already do love cooking

7
level 2

Took a three hour cooking class and made macarons. It was fun and met some new people.

4
level 1

I went to Paris alone and loved it as a single woman.

I did get pickpocketed (in the customs line at CDG ffs) so just keep your purse closed and wits about you. Otherwise I had no problem through all of Paris/France. Don’t engage men who try to approach you.

I stayed in the 11th arrondissement if I remember correctly, which was a bit quieter/further but accessible to everything by metro. Fairly certain I stayed at Hotel du Prince Eugene and it was great.

My favourite part was honestly Versailles. Taking the full day to go there - start in the morning and get the palace out of the way and spend the rest of the day wandering the gardens. There is so much there and once you get outside the main gardens it’s much less busy.

I’ve flown with Air France quite frequently and its always been fine although admittedly I’m not plus sized. I always find it worth paying for a seat reservation (if you prefer the aisle or want an exit row). Many flights from North America are overnight so if you take some OTC sleep aids you can normally sleep most of the flight. Bring earplugs and headphones.

4