Ultimate Solo Travel Guide to Florida – What to Pack, Safety Measures, Budget & More
Traveling solo has its own set of advantages and perils. On one hand, you get to embark on an empowering adventure trip all by yourself where you experience the charm of freedom and liberty. On the other hand, loneliness, safety measures, and the dreaded single supplement might worry you a bit. Keeping all the aspects in mind, our travel experts at Search Florida Rentals have skillfully crafted this ultimate solo travel guide to Florida for all the excited millennial. As we proceed we will also share some travel tips for our travelers.
Solo Travel Is the Ultimate Self-Indulgence
Refrain yourself from the idea of latching on to another person or a group because you are going solo and the entire world is waiting to be explored entirely by yourself. Imagine watching the sunset lounging on a pristine sandy beach, climbing a mountain cliff, cycling the challenging trails, stopping whenever you want for a drink, or crossing borders – you are your own boss. Yes, only the thought of it invigorates the mind, body, and soul. Moreover, there is no better way to challenge or face your fear.
While your mistakes are your own, all the triumphs are more exciting than you ever imagined. There will be no regrets of ruining or spoiling your partner’s day when you want to trek to the remotest village in the quest of some serenity.
Why Should You Travel Solo to Florida?
Google Trends ranks the Sunshine State of Florida as the “#4 state searching for solo female travel information”.
With the Gulf of Mexico on one side and the Atlantic Ocean on the other, the south-easternmost U.S. state of Florida makes an ideal holiday destination in the country. In Florida, the sun is all bright and sunny for more than 300 days a year, hence the name Sunshine State of Florida. Miles of pristine coastline, vibrant coastal cities like Fort Lauderdale, Miami, etc, stunning white-sand beaches offering endless water-related sports, world-class theme parks and amusement parks, award-winning national parks, and the Florida Keys for a taste of island life. When you have all of these in one place, why wouldn’t you travel to Florida?
You are intrigued by Miami Beach’s off the beaten path, gorgeous Las Olas Boulevard in Fort Lauderdale, or South Florida’s coolest little beach town – Hollywood Beach. You can go wherever you want, meet local people, be in the moment, and enjoy the ambiance – these are the perks of vacationing in Florida solo.
How to Plan Your Solo Trip to Florida?
Florida is a fascinating place to travel and create memories. The Sunshine State is basking in the glory. It is steeped in rich history, has stunning surroundings, boasts plenty of natural scenery, and offers endless activities. From adventure junkies to nature lovers and romantic couples, everyone flocks to the state to immerse themselves in its beauty. Since you are traveling alone to the beautiful state, here are a few key points, tips, and tricks to adhere to.
#1 What to Pack: One of the advantages of solo travelers is to travel light. You carry quite a few essential things. Packing less puts you in control. It is easier to carry, hence easier to travel. The ultimate packing list for a trip to Florida includes –
- Carry proper travel documents like passport, visas, travel insurance, etc. Make sure you carry copies of all these.
- Have sufficient cash with you.
- Never travel without technology – mobile phone, charger, camera, go-pro, e-reader, etc.
- Personal items: Since you are traveling to Florida, you need to carry sunscreen, a hat, tiny first aid kit, and prescription medication. Face cream, shave soap, brush, razor, hair product, makeup, conditioner, supplements, vitamins, etc. are important too.
- Whether you will be indulged in some rigorous activities or chilling on the beach or hitting the nightclubs – based on your preferences you should carry shoes, pants, tops, jacket, bathing suit, accessories, and other basics (sunglasses, scarf, umbrella, etc.).
Advantages of packing less are –
- Hassle-free Travel: Face fewer lineups at airports – while checking-in and getting-off the plane.
- Great Walking Experience: Don’t wait for the elevator when you can use stairs comfortably. Walking a few blocks is never an issue.
- Save Money: Another advantage of traveling light is to save bucks. You can count on taking public transports like buses or trains than paying a hefty amount on taxis. Further, you are not bound to pay extra for bags on budget flights. You also need not pay a porter to carry your belongings.
- No Fear of Stealing: You have less fear of getting your stuff stolen. This is the biggest advantage. When you carry a small bag, it hardly grabs the eyeballs as compared to a large suitcase or even multiple bags.
- Save Time: Save ample time as you don’t have to spend hours repacking as well as unpacking.
- Less Stuff to Carry: You would never want to carry more because you are traveling alone and this might thwart your travel plans.
#2 Important Safety Measures: The most important question solo travelers often ask – is it safe to travel to Florida?
Without a friend, a partner, or a companion to watch your back, it is sometimes unthinkable to travel solo. Things that might worry a solo wanderer are health worries, criminals, and scam artists.
As compared to other travel destinations around the world, Florida is quite safe for both men and women. Over the past few years, more and more travelers are going solo to Florida to experience its awe-inspiring beauty. Here are some of the safety measures the travelers have adapted to over the years.
- Do Your Homework Properly: Even though you are not vacationing alone for the first time, it is always important to do your homework beforehand to avoid or be ready for any unforeseen events. You are traveling to a new place, so ensure you have booked the place to stay and take note of little things like the distance between the airport to the accommodation, important points of interest, and other key things. Don’t just get into a private cab unless you are a hundred percent sure about it.
- Carry a Theft-resistant Purse or Bag: Since you can never predict whether someone is going to snatch your things, you should better be prepared for it. While roaming around the streets or in the shopping markets, make sure you have a theft-resistant purse for dialing spending. Constantly reaching under your shirt for money wouldn’t seem to be a great idea.
- Choose the Best Accommodation: You have to be very careful while picking the most suitable accommodation. The best way to choose a place to stay in Florida is to look for a great neighborhood. At Search Florida Rentals, you will find sophisticated Florida vacation rentals by owners. These vacation rental properties are professionally maintained. Moreover, these owners are locals. They will be able to give you important tips, which will surely come in handy for you. You may like to rent a bike or a car depending on your travel plans. This allows you to travel like a local. Isn’t it awesome?
- Travel like a Local and Avoid appearing like a Tourist: If you think your homework isn’t that awesome and you need some assistance, seek help from vacation rental owners. You wouldn’t like the idea of walking down the streets with your face immersed in a guidebook or map. That might encourage someone to have a suspicious look on you. Get all the important information from the owner and explore like a local.
- Don’t Keep it Secret: Sometimes it is important to have a balance between revealing a bit of your destination and keeping everything secret. While heading to a new city or, maybe, on an expedition, you must let your near and dear ones know about your whereabouts. Also, let them know in advance whether the place you are visiting has internet access so that they won’t be scared or worried if your phone goes unreachable for a couple of hours. Carry your ID card everywhere. This will allow people to recognize you and contact your family in case something goes wrong.
- Try and Avoid Secluded Places: Don’t just go to a private place if it is not very essential. You have got to stick to open and public areas. If anything goes wrong, there will be people to assist you. Also, open areas will have fewer theft chances. If you are traveling at night, don’t just think of going to a lonely area.
- Don’t Roam around with Valuables: Valuables like jewelry, flashy items, an expensive watch, etc. should be left at your accommodation. All these items will draw unnecessary attention.
- Be Confident and Lie a Little: Make sure you are not appearing confused or lost. This often makes people vulnerable. No matter whether you are roaming around in your locality or 8,000 miles away, if you are confident enough, you are going to good. Walk confidently and if you have to ask someone for directions, pretend like you have friends waiting at one point and you need some help reaching there. This will give the impression that you are not alone.
- Meeting New People Doesn’t Mean Trusting Them: One of the perks of traveling alone is to meet new people, hang out with charming personalities, and travel together (in some cases). Well, one advice that our SFR experts have drawn for you is that you shouldn’t trust everyone blindly. There are impostors and scam artists who make amazing travel companions. But, you know how important it is for you to stay away from such people.
- Register with State Department: When traveling to Florida, consider signing up with the state department for help in case of emergency.
#3 Tips for Solo Shopping: Who doesn’t like shopping? Imagine walking through the busiest markets, bargaining for your favorite item, feeling happy about cracking the deals, and looking for more inspiration. Florida is the ultimate shopping destination for solo travelers. If you are traversing around the beautiful south-easternmost U.S. state, here are the topnotch shopping destinations that might fascinate you to go shopping spree.
- Pensacola: The westernmost city in the Florida Panhandle, Pensacola is a beautiful beach destination with plenty of amazing shopping options. Head to the Pensacola Beach Boardwalk where a plethora of stores, shops, and boutiques are waiting for you. Buy beach gear and swimsuits at Islanders Coastal Outfitter, beach-to-bay fashions at Envie Boutique, and wood carving, unique jewelry, and Christian souvenirs at Go Fish Clothing & Jewelry Company.
- Destin: An hour drive from Pensacola, Destin is another great shopping destination. Silver Sands Premium Outlets lures thousands of shoppers who love to explore nearly 100 outlet stores from Brooks Brothers, Banana Republic, Coach, Calvin Klein, Gap Outlet, Columbia, Nike, J.Crew, Michael Kors, and Saks Fifth Avenue Off 5th. An outdoor shopping mall, Destin Commons flaunts gorgeous fountains and is lined with lush palm trees. Stop by Maui Nix Durf Shop to buy your beach vacation necessities. Another outdoor shopping area that draws in shopaholics is the Village at Baytowne Wharf. Destin is also known for its flea markets, boutiques, and antique shops. Female travelers shouldn’t miss local favorite Kikki Risa.
- Panama City Beach: What comes to your mind when you think of Panama City Beach? Like every other visitor, you will love to lounge on the soft sand beaches and take in the calm, clear waters of the Gulf of Mexico. Since you are in this beach paradise, indulge in the activities for which it is famous. Shopping!
No trip to Panama City Beach is complete without exploring its shopping areas and buying the area’s most favorite stuff. Pier Park is an outstanding spot. The most favorite shopping hotspots in Panama City Beach are Target, Forever 21, JCPenney, Dillard’s, Victoria's Secret, Journeys, and Marshalls. Ron Jon’s Surf Shop, Francesca’s Collections, and the Florida House.
- Key West: To have an island taste, head to the Florida Keys. Key West is the most popular island in the Keys known for mesmerizing sunsets, water sports, and shopping, of course. For the ultimate Key West shopping experience, head to Clinton Square Market. It is nestled between the Key West Aquarium and the historic Custom House.
- Orlando: It’s not all about Disney in Orlando. Although home to award-winning theme parks and amusement parks, this central Florida city lures visitors for its magnificent shopping experience. Take a break from the park and drive to downtown Disney Marketplace hosts an array of Disney-themed stores offering Christmas and custom art themes, specialty stores with kitchen, and more. You will also like to shop at the Mall at Millenia and The Florida Mall. Heading to the Orlando Premium Outlets, you will be bequeathed more shopping experiences at stores like Armani Exchange, Nine West, and J. Crew.
- Palm Beach: Palm Beach is known for its glamorous look. This resort beach town is also flourished with exclusive fashion, furniture, art, accessories, antiques, and gifts. Shops like Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Emilio Pucci, Michael Kors, Brooks Brothers, Kate Spade, Ralph Lauren, and Hermes will make you become a spendthrift.
#4 Tip for Solo Dining: Riding solo has its own perks. While the above reasons stand solid, another point to add to the list is solo dining. You can be friendlier and get to chat with the service people the way you want. Maybe, you want to grab a book while relishing the most delicious meal of the day. Some of the best places to tantalize your taste buds in Florida include –
- Miami: Taking your eyes off Miami is too hard. Agree? A world-class destination thronged by all types of people and fringed with all sorts of things, Miami is as vibrant as New York City and Los Angeles. It is a great place to dine alone. Some of the restaurants are perfect to have a hearty meal, meet a new friend, and have a chat. Others would be perfect to relax. Would you like to have tacos with margarita after a busy day at the beach? Maybe, grab some totopos in the meantime? Taquiza is a great place to eat and relax. Caja Caliente Wynwood serves creative Cuban tacos in a fanciful outdoor area. It impresses diners with tuna tartare taco.
- Key West: The Flaming Buoy, Banana Café, Bagatelle, Azur, Pepes, Blackfin Bistro, and Michaels are some of the great options for travelers in Key West.
- Tampa: Basically, Tampa is a business travel destination. Many come here for business and grab meals at Champions Sports Bar & Grille, Rick’s on the River, Ulele, and Malio’s.
#5 How to Find the Perfect Place to Stay? Easier to pick the hotel? But, will you avail yourself of all the luxuries and comforts of home at the behest of the money you are spending? The truth is NO. Florida is rather known for its fancy condos and apartments for solo visitors. Florida vacation rentals flaunt super-stunning properties with exquisite interiors, upscale amenities, unique sights, and more. Here are a handful of vacation rentals in Florida by owners from Search Florida Rentals ideal for lonely travelers.
- Casa Atlantica Studio: Just off the beach lies this sumptuous property equipped with everything you have been longing for. The studio is ideal for people who travel alone. Wake up to the gorgeous water views with plenty of sunshine right into your room. The balcony is a perfect place to savor breakfast and enjoy the view. TV, free Wi-Fi, AC, hairdryer, iron & board, washing machine, and linens are well-fitted.
- Pompano Beach Seaside Vacation Rental: Beach lovers in Pompano Beach will love to peek into this paradise. The first-floor condo has a cozy bedroom and a full bath. It is beautifully tucked away from the hustle and bustle. Trampoline Park, shopping, Festival Flea Market Mall, tennis, Sugar Chest Antique Mall, and the Pompano Market Place are closely located.
- Islamorada Waterfront Villa: Upscale amenities you will have at this waterfront villa include an outdoor grill, heating, air conditioning, ceiling fans, Wi-Fi, outdoor shower, deck/ patio, terrace, and well-equipped kitchen (stove, toaster, blender, microwave, coffee maker, refrigerator, oven, and dishes & utensils). This is also the most ideal place to stay and get indulged wind-surfing, shopping, walking, sailing, water-skiing, jet-skiing, cycling, fishing, beach-combing, bird-watching, deep-sea fishing.
- Holmes Beach Sun Cottage: Known for its broad beaches and sprawling parks, Anna Maria Island leaves no stone unturned to intrigue potential visitors. Finding an ideal place to stay makes it more interesting to explore the area. Cozy bedrooms, fully-furnished living room, and modern kitchen – the cottage is as alluring and enticing as it looks.
- One Bedroom Condo in the Heart of Fort Myers Beach: When you can’t afford a luxury stay, we ensure you are not disappointed at all. Envisage relaxing by the pool, reading out a novel, relishing a great meal, and enjoy some incredible views. The location is great. You have great beach views and plenty of activities such as walking, swimming, shopping, beach-combing, bird-watching, wildlife viewing, outlet shopping, jet-skiing, shelling, and parasailing.
Pro Tips to Travel Safe
Before winding up the article, we would like to take you through some of the pro travel tips for an enjoyable solo trip to Florida.
- Don’t Reveal Your Whereabouts on Social Media, but Don’t Hide it to Your Near and Dear Ones.
- Keep Safety Travel Kit.
- Attend Travel Meet-ups and Programs
- Be Outgoing, But Cautious
- Stay at Affordable Florida Vacation Rentals.
Are you all set to venture into Florida and take the first leap? Follow these travel tips and have a wonderful, safe vacation.