Traveling solo doesn’t have to be lonely or scary. In fact, a vacation where you can choose what to do and when to do it sounds pretty great to us! Besides, sometimes it’s truly impossible to plan around and coordinate the busy schedules of you and your friends. So why not go it alone—at least once?

We had a lot of questions about planning the perfect solo trip and are guessing you might, too. Take a look at what we discovered.

Benefits of vacationing alone
Turns out there are a number of advantages to traveling alone. The Huffington Post has a number of blog posts that offer advice and tips from travelers who have done it. From meeting new people to making you more assertive, these are experiences you may not get when traveling with a companion.

Think about safety
Traveling by yourself can be a completely safe endeavor as long as you remain aware. Book hotels that stay open late and are in a populated area. Research the general price of a cab ride and the distance from the airport to your hotel. When you arrive, carry identification with you and check your maps or guidebooks before you leave the hotel. Bottom line – trust your gut. If something doesn’t feel right, avoid it.

Research your destination
Plan ahead but not too far ahead. It’s recommended that you have a general idea of where you want to go but it is also important to be spontaneous. You never know what a local will recommend or a hot spot you’ll discover as you start exploring.

Pack smart
Since you’re the only one responsible for your luggage, consider packing lighter than when you travel with someone else. Do your best to use only a carry-on bag. You won’t be able to stow an extra top or toiletries in a travel partner’s bag if your checked luggage doesn’t make it to your final destination.

Review your bills carefully
Tours, resorts and cruise lines may try to tack a “single supplement” charge to your bill. This fee is added to make up for the second occupant who is usually there and it’s not something that can typically be negotiated away. Short of rooming with another single traveler to avoid the extra cost, look for a destination or activity that doesn’t include this fee.

Embrace your solo status
Even if you love meeting other people, embrace the time you spend by yourself. Explore a museum without a tour or guide. Wander through a park or check out a local zoo. Eat whatever you want, whenever you want. And spend time relaxing — on a beach, in a café or on a walking path.

Have you ever taken a solo vacation? Share your tips with us!