There is no reason to worry about travelling alone over 60 and even less so if on an organised tour. Once you do it you will wonder why you waited so long. You will then most probably prefer it in the future also. Follow these tips for travelling alone and it will be even easier.
Dress down and/or walk away to avoid overcharging
In Southeast Asia, it is very safe no matter how you dress. But dress more like a backpacker than a celebrity and you will attract far less attention from taxi drivers and other scammers.
If staying at a nicer hotel, walk down outside a hostel or at least away from it before you hail a cab. While most are honest, there are always those who will try and overcharge you and this is more likely if you are seen coming out of a 5-star hotel looking like a million dollars.
Likewise never take a cab that is waiting outside your hotel no matter what quality it is. Hail a passing one down the road a bit. Never accept a given price in a modern cab. Insist on the meter or get out and hail the next one.
Barter hard with Tuk Tuk and motorbike taxi drivers and never accept their first price. They will only think you are rich and stupid if you do. Smile throughout also and give a small tip if it was an enjoyable experience. Everyone will then be happy. They will always lower their price.
Start at around 30% or 40% of what they ask and zero in on something in between is a good rule of thumb for first-timers. Be prepared to walk away if they won’t budge. You will always find another who will. Likewise, any taxi driver who quotes you a price as soon as you tell them where you say want to go; just say “bye-bye”. Never stop smiling though.
There really is no reason to fear travelling alone at 60. And even less so in Southeast Asia. While you always need to be aware of your surrounding in any new destination it is far better to pretend, at least, that you are familiar with them. Walk around looking at a map may attract unwanted attention. Walking along as you do back home far less so.
Take the usual plus some extra precautions
Again like back home always keep your valuables on your person. In places where pickpockets can’t get them. Larger valuables in a small backpack or shoulder bag kept close to you so as not to attract bag snatchers. Loosely held bags can cause loses or even severe injuries if a speeding motorbike rider goes for a grab. All these things are uncommon but can occur.
Study up on the country you are visiting
With the internet or even a guide book, it is very easy to learn things about your destination long before you arrive. Learning some of the language and cultural norms is a great way to become friends with the locals rather than offending them.
If you are flexible with an open mind then there is nothing at all to fear if you follow these tips for travelling alone over 60.
A good tour leader or coordinator on an organised tour will have far more tips also. As the old sayings go: “Just do it”, and “You will only regret not doing it”.
Perhaps start with the second most visited city in the world for an easy but still full on Southeast Asia experience? Or the even easier Kuala Lumpur?