If you’re a solo traveller, you’re probably going to find yourself in the position of eating out in a foreign country alone. Admittedly this sounds really daunting, but in reality it’s really not that scary, in fact I recommend it. It’s empowering and, in my experience, you can even make new friends or hear about a new or hidden awesome place you can go visit whilst you’re there. Below I share my top tips to feeling less awkward when you go out to eat aone.
Bring A Book/Phone/Laptop
If you have something to keep you occupied the time will pass quicker and you’ll forget you’re eating alone. Personally I like getting on with writing when I dine alone because I need to eat and love writing so why not put them together? Even reading a book will help pass the time quickly.
This can be a lot of fun actually, I like to give them backstories and predict their future and everything. It also reminds you that absolutely no one is looking at you and judging you because they are far too concerned about themselves and what you’re thinking of them.
Go To A Cozy Restaurant
By cozy I mean small. I went to a restaurant in Glasgow which had you sitting in a bar set up, meaning you could talk to the people who sat down next to you comfortably. This is a great way to get advice on what else to do whilst you’re in that city OR make new friends. Take advantage of the intimate environment.
Talk To The Staff
Yes, they are there to serve you, but they will know the area better than you and might be able to inform you of a really great place to visit. Also I’m sure they’ll enjoy someone who likes a chat as it will make their shift go faster. This is also a great way to practice a different language.
If your first meal is a quick lunch then that’s only 30 minutes at the most to suffer through, you can build up to the dinner and gain confidence before throwing yourself in to the deep end. Eventually you’ll be doing it like it’s nothing. If you work up to being able to eat alone and enjoy your own comapny, you’ll be a much better person for it!
Remember That No One Cares
When you look around a restaurant, do you care if someone else is eating alone? No. You probably don’t even notice them. No one is watching you (unless they are, then scare them off by watching them back). If you don’t care about others eating alone, then others certainly don’t care about you eating alone. If they do care, then they don’t have enough going on in their own lives.
So those are my top tips to dining alone. Do you have any others? Please comment below sharing your stories and tips.