I am a 67 year old retired female college professor who wants to travel in Europe, preferably RS tours, but does not have a travel companion. In particular, Best of the Adriatic, Scotland, Portugal, Iceland, Scandinavia, Greece or Italy are on my bucket list. But I'd also be open to other areas. Timing is also flexible. Would love to meet another senior female traveler who lives in the Seattle area to discuss possible trips. Please PM me if you are interested.
I'm a solo traveler and I've done 12 Rick tours (4 with family members, 8 on my own) as well as 13 Road Scholar tours (all solo). There are generally other solo women on the tours and I've found both the other solos as well as many couples are open to hanging with others!
I'd plunge in to the tour that interests you most and go for it whether you find someone to sign up for the same tour or not.
If there is a travel group that meets near you, that may offer an opportunity to meet some fellow travelers and assess compatibility. There is a Travel Group forum topic where meeting locations and times are posted.
Like Pam, I have done a number of RS tours by myself. There have always been other people traveling solo, and those traveling with others have always been welcoming. Go for it!
BTW, I am a serious introvert and I have had no issues fitting in on RS tours.
Hi JP, I’m close to your age and lived in the Seattle area for 30 years. My husband & I are both retired and live in the Coeur d’Alene area now. I’m signed up as a solo traveler (& paid the single supplement) for the RS Best of the Adriatic tour. I’m very independent while traveling but would welcome you in the same tour group (June 18 start) if interested, for some dinners or whatever.
I’m arriving a few days early to Ljubljana and planning to take a food tour and a city bike tour.
PS I can vouch for Jean - She's awesome and would be fun to have on a tour.
Of course, you don't know me either....lol.
I’m a tad older but that doesn’t matter when traveling on a Rick Steves tour. The tours are welcoming to all whether traveling as a group or solo.
My husband refuses to travel. My first tour was in 2019 with my sister-in-law. Last year I did the South of France tour solo and was brave enough to travel an additional two weeks by myself. I was out of my comfort level but am so happy I did both.
In June I’m doing the Berlin, Prague & Vienna tour, again solo. Then I’m staying in Vienna for 5 more days, then Salzburg before going back to Munich before flying home.
You’re welcome to join the tour. It’s always fun to meet people on the tour do things together during free time or share the day’s adventures over dinner. I’m sure everyone on other tours feels the same.
Pam, I’d love to be on a tour you’re on!
Hi, JP. If you go on a RS tour, you will end up with an entire group of travel companions, whether you start off with one or not. I have gone on 4 RS tours as a solo traveler and have enjoyed them all. Last September I went on Best of the Adriatic and Heart of Italy which sounds like two you might be interested in. Previously I went on Paris and the Heart of France and the Best of Switzerland.
Like Jean, I always get the solo supplement. I find that I like to have my own space at the end of the day. There have always been other solo travelers and the couples are usually quite friendly. One lovely couple on my last tour made a point of splitting up and getting to know everyone. The husband said, "we get to eat together all the time, we want to get to know the others."
I'm headed out on the Best of Southern England April 17th to April 29th. The website says there is one seat left if you want to join that tour. I'll be flying to London from Seattle and you could join the same flight if you liked. Honestly, you will do great no matter what tour you choose to go on.
edited to add: I forgot to mention that often the act of going on a tour helps you meet a like minded person who might enjoy a trip with you in the future. I've met several women who started off like that. They both went on a tour, discovered they were good companions, and then choose to travel together on future trips. It doesn't always work out that way, but I have seen this work.
Horsewoofie....same! You'd be great fun!
Well, actually everyone on the thread and really most on the forum would be excellent to travel with.
BTW, besides our monthly local Coeur d'Alene meet up, I've met up with forum members (other solos as well as couples) for drinks and/or dinner on a number of occasions in Paris, London and Amsterdam. It's always fun to see people face-to-face. We have common ground but that's just the start!
I'm also with the folks who say they get a single supplement. I need alone time at the end of the day. I, too, am actually an introvert although most people who know me would not think that.
While a tour is great, I'm here to encourage you that you can go alone and have fun. I'm a very, very shy person who usually doesn't have anyone to travel with. However, I long ago disregarded advice from friends and family telling me how "scary" it is to travel solo. There are many, many solo female travelers in Europe who you can meet on walking tours or other tours around Europe. I have to push myself out of my comfort zone to talk to people but in 95% of the cases, people will keep talking-especially if you are alone. I've arranged to go to lunch or a museum with a couple of the people I've met on tours.
Long-winded but just another option that you don't always need a tour. I rather like traveling alone as I can see what I want to see and don't worry about pleasing others.
I recently came across this video about solo female travel https://youtu.be/fzh2oM0W-qk
My husband of 36 years died in January 2022. I went on my first RS Tour that September (Berlin/Prague/Vienna) by myself. Six out of 23 people on the tour were also solo travelers but everyone including couples were very friendly and always willing to hang out and have meals together. In fact there were a few times during the tour that I wanted to be alone but that actually required a little more effort on my part! I’m going on two other tours this year, Best of Andalucia starting May 21 and Best of Southern Italy starting Oct 2. On both tours, I plan to tack on time after the tour to spend on my own in a nearby area that will not be included on the tour. (I.e. Madrid after Best of Andalucia) I wasn’t psychologically ready to do that last year but I am now. In any case, go for it! But I definitely recommend paying the single supplement because even when traveling to wonderful places with wonderful people, it’s important to have your own space
Jessica, I’m so sorry about your husband. Please accept my condolences.
You will love the South of Italy tour. It was my first RS tour in 2019. Afterwards my sister-in-law and I drove to the the small village in Calabria that her grandparents were from.
"On both tours, I plan to tack on time after the tour to spend on my own in a nearby area ...snip...I wasn’t psychologically ready to do that last year but I am now."
@Jessica, I think this is an excellent point for people to consider. Sometimes it's enough just to take one step out of one's comfort zone without adding extra stress. I, too, am sorry about your loss. I'm glad you are enjoying travel!
My husband and I made 19 trips to Europe together, but he moved to a memory care community last spring. In August, I made my first solo trip to Europe, planning it myself (as I had always done for our couple's trips) and it turned out well. I'll be traveling solo again this year. If you're willing, I think you could enjoy traveling on a tour or independently even without a travel partner. Keep coming here for tips!
@Janet…so sorry but very glad you are comfortable traveling.
Hi JP - I just want to add that my first solo trip (after years of extended family group travel) was right after my son went off to college and I went on the RS Village Italy tour. I got lucky as the two other solo female travelers paid the single supplement and I ended up with my own room. The people who join RS tours are very friendly, open, and inclusive. I tend to be more of an introvert, but decided that I was going to step out of my comfort zone. I love trip planning and made sure I had ideas of what I wanted to see/do/eat during our free time. I let people know my plan, and before you know it, 4-6 other tour members were coming along !
And during that trip, I met another solo traveler from Seattle and we have since become good friends and have traveled together 2 more times and have two more trips planned! My advice would be to try 'solo' travel because on a RS tour you will have 20+ friendly fellow travel companions.
I have traveled 3 times with RS and 4 times with Overseas Adventure Travel. OAT does not have a single supplement charge. Feel free to PM me if you have questions about OAT. I live in the Seattle area.