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'I just lost my two travel partners and now I'm going to alone on this other continent.' UPDATED

'I just lost my two travel partners and now I'm going to alone on this other continent.' UPDATED

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Hanging out with someone in every day life and traveling with them are two completely different experiences.

"I [22F] just lost my two travel partners [both 22F] and now I'm going to alone on this other continent for the next 4 days."

What started as a great, relaxing two week vacation throughout Europe has turned into a stressful nightmare. I bought my tickets originally with my two girl friends- one of which I was very close to and had been for some years. I'll call her Natalie. The other girl (we'll call her Jenny) had plans to separate from us halfway through the trip, as she had tickets to a concert in another country.

Me and Natalie had agreed it was best (and safest) to stay together for the remainder of the trip. We booked hotels together, but they were only in Natalie's name as I paid her cash. I'm now realizing this was a huge mistake. The day Jenny left, s**t went downhill fast.

I became ill and have spent the last few days congested and coughing.

Apparently Natalie can't stand the way it sounds when a sick person sleeps, so she continuously woke me up to tell me I was making noise all night the first night we were alone.

This resulted in no sleep for either of us and awkward tension the whole next day. We barely spoke, wouldn't even sit next to each other on the trams, and generally were uncomfortable. Natalie insisted I buy medicine so she could sleep better, so I obliged and bought some cough and congestion medicine.

I had a weird reaction to it and it made me super dizzy, so I told her I was going back to our hotel to sleep it off. She didn't want to come with me because it was still early evening, but decided to for whatever reason. When we got back we didn't speak at all, and she made it pretty clear she didn't want to.

She continued to wake me up through the night when I would start dozing off and say things like "Gross. AcrossTheContinents, stop. Disgusting. So annoying." She mocked me when I would breath too heavily. This morning when I went to take a shower she texted me from the other room to tell me I should stay back today, and skip the two attractions we bought tickets for.

When I told her I didn't want to lose my money and suggested we go separate because she's clearly annoyed with me she said "yeah I don't really feel like being around your sickness all day." Tensions blew up and I told her I wanted to be alone today, we're obviously around each other too much and should take a break.

She agreed and said I should try to get a different hotel when we get to our last destination. I told her maybe, with the way she'd been acting I was considering it anyway, and she replied telling me to "please do" and that she'd even refund me for the last night here if I got out sooner.

My biggest fear coming on this trip was being alone, but I literally can NOT stay with this girl for the remaining 4 days. I feel like a leper, someone she looks at as disgusting or a burden. Natalie told me she could "easily tell them it's just her staying at the hotel" so my name would be taken off, which made me so angry that I was shaking.

I decided right then to not get totally f#$ked over and booked a last minute hostel in our last destination, where I'll be staying starting tomorrow. Natalie is now saying I've ruined the trip and that she's losing money by me staying by myself, I'm f#$king terrified, my family is freaking out and I just spent the last ten minutes crying in a foreign Burger King bathroom.

I'm so desperate to go home I was looking into buying an earlier flight date, but I can't afford it. My friendship is obviously over and the rest of this trip is now going to be spent alone, with strangers, in a place where I can't speak the language. Help me stay sane and give me some tips on traveling alone.

TL;DR: tensions boiled over during a two week vacation in Europe, last minute change of plans leaves me alone for the next 4 days. Not experienced with this at all and am really, really scared.

Commenters did not hold back their true thoughts.

Montaron87 wrote:

There's a saying: "If you can travel with people you can live with people."

Traveling together tends to bring out the worst in some people and it leads to clashes like this. It sucks, but you're simply not meant to be around each other for extended amounts of time.

As for how to spend the remaining days, look up the subreddit for the city you're in, if you're in a big city there's usually daily stuff and events you can go to and hang out with people. If you happen to be in Amsterdam, I'd buy you a beer and show you around. If not, there's bound to be a bunch of other cool redditors to hang out with.

Hurrem_Hurrem wrote:

First things first, deep breaths! Which country are you in? If you're in a city that generally receives a lot of tourists, then finding people who speak English shouldn't be an issue.

Worst case scenario, you can rely on miming or keep your ears open for other English-speaking tourists if you need assistance with something.

Second, try to change your perspective. I'm a woman that has traveled solo in foreign countries quite a lot, and it can be a very invigorating experience.

It's total independence, and you'll feel pretty good about yourself by being able to rely on yourself (and the help of kindly strangers if need be!). You can see whatever sites you want, eat at whatever restaurant you want, and generally move at your own pace. And you won't have an AH of a friend freaking out over a cough.

You're going to be staying in a hostel, which is a great place to meet fellow travelers and new friends. Use common sense, of course - follow your gut when interacting with strangers, stay out of sketchy parts of neighborhoods, keep a copy of your passport on you but leave your actual passport at the hostel safe if they have one. This could still be a great trip!

OP responded:

I'm currently in Amsterdam until tomorrow, I'll be by myself for the remainder in Copenhagen. You're right, I love being alone. But I'm not great at it because I'm so bad at direction. I love the idea of exploring alone, as long as I find my way back! Thank you for the encouragement. I'm actually pretty excited to meet the other travelers.

indil47 wrote:

Oh, man, OP. I totally feel for you. Make sure that now that you're own that you get plenty of rest! Something to think about--are you sitting together with this b#$ch of a "friend" on the flight? Make sure when you check in to ask for a different seat.

Also, make sure to arrange for your own airport transportation when you get back, too.

Have fun with your remaining time on the trip!

About a week later, OP shared an update.

So shortly after posting the OP, I got quite a few redditors contacting me via PM. I had been sitting alone in Amsterdam, silently freaking out for about 2 hours before I posted to this sub, and honestly it was the best decision I could've made.

About an hour after leaving the hotel I shared with Natalie, I received a text from her asking me not to tell any of our friends back at home what happened with us, because she didn't want "added drama." I hadn't spoken to any of them, but I HAD let my mom and sister in on what happened, and that I'd be staying by myself in a hostel for the remainder of the trip in case I got into any trouble.

They were, of course, livid that I was going to be alone, but I asked them to not contact Natalie or anyone else other than me. After they'd calmed down they agreed and I felt a ton better, ended up meeting with another redditor from the thread (shoutout to u/montaron87) and he ended up showing me around some of the city. It was so relaxing and he was super fun to be around- I actually almost forgot about Natalie for the day.

And then Natalie sent me a picture of her and Jenny (our previous travel partner) who apparently was in the same city and wanted to meet up. Jenny never bothered to let me know that she was in our area or ask to see me, despite us 3 all being together for the first half of the two week trip.

They were in one of Amsterdam's coffee shops, one that I'd asked Natalie to go with me to see previously before our fallout, but she was never interested in going. I didn't reply. I didn't see Natalie for the rest of the night until Jenny left, and I went back to our hotel. The next morning we were set to fly to our last destination (Copenhagen) and we had to fly together.

It was awkward, especially when I had to explain to Natalie that yes, I was still splitting up from her when we got there and that it wasn't just a threat. Still, we kept it cordial so things didn't get worse than they already had. By the time we got to Copenhagen I threw her a few hundred Kroners (her purse had been previously stolen and she had no money) and we went our separate ways.

Annnnd it was amazing. My initial terror of a hundred things going wrong faded away when I got to my hostel. I spent the evening in their bar, meeting new people, and enjoying my new freedom. I could be myself for the first time in weeks, it felt surreal. I slept peacefully with no angry Natalie interruptions, and spent the following day exploring the city on my own terms.

I even got to go into the Tivoli gardens (thank you SO much u/docatron, if you're ever in California I'll buy you a round!). On my second night there I actually met with another redditor for dinner and some beers (you're seriously awesome u/gubbernor, I loved sharing our stories!) and I wanted to be able to see everyone who PM'd me.

I appreciated EVERY single one of you and your offers, and if I had stayed a bit longer I'd have taken you all up on meeting up. By far the best times I had in my whole vacation around Europe was spent exploring on my own, taking my time to appreciate what I wanted to and not worrying about bothering somebody else when I slept.

It was f#$king liberating and I'd do it again the next chance I get.

As for Natalie, we haven't spoken since we returned home. And I feel like keeping it that way. (Sorry this wasn't a super juicy update, but I told people I'd update when I got back!)

TL;DR- followed through on my plans to leave Natalie and get my own hostel. Ended up meeting a few redditors, seeing the city on my own and having the best time I'd had since I got to Europe. Haven't spoken to Natalie since returning home and have no plans to.

People were happy to hear such a positive update.

Montaron87 wrote:

I'm glad you had fun in Copenhagen and it was really nice to meet you and show you around in Amsterdam!

OP responded:

You were awesome company! If I'm ever in Amsterdam again (which I plan to be because I loved it) I'll let you know!

[deleted] wrote:

You hear so much fear mongering garbage listening to the media these days. Traveling by yourself is fine, and one of the best things about it is meeting new people. I've always relied on the kindness of strangers while traveling, and I've never been disappointed. And yeah, your friend is a twat and I'd avoid speaking to her ever again.

saltedcaramelsauce wrote:

Yeah the whole original post puzzled me. OP is 22, not 12. Why all the freaking out about traveling alone for a few days in one of the coolest and most beautiful cities in the world (Amsterdam)?

The chances of anything truly dangerous happening were like 0.1% and everyone speaks English anyway. Traveling alone is awesome.

Natalie is an AH. But the ignorant fearmongering from OP's mom and sister is annoying too.

PostItLikeYouMeanIt wrote:

Travelling alone is a rite of passage for a lot of European twenty somethings (or even late teens). US media makes it seem super dangerous and terrifying, but it's actually liberating.

This ended in a super wholesome way.

Sources: Reddit
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