The world might be scary but it should not be a reason to keep you at home. Many brave women are traveling solo.
Some places are more dangerous for women who are alone than in other places. Regardless of where your adventure takes you, here are five tips to stay safe when traveling alone.
1. Keep Your Family & Friends In The Loop
Social media can be extremely helpful when traveling alone. By checking in on social media when you arrive at a different place allows close friends and family to easily track your whereabouts. Another great trick is to send a live location on Whatsapp to a friend when you catch a Taxi. If you get an Uber, remember to send the tracking link to a friend who will check if you arrive at your destination.
“If you are not a fan of airing your business on social media, perhaps pop a message to your nearest and dearest back home and alert the hotel of your plans”says Jennifer Morris, the owner of Travel Savvy.
2. Pre-Trip Tips
Pack as lightly as possible to avoid being weighed down by heavy luggage which can leave you more vulnerable. Avoid putting a residential address on your luggage tags. Instead, put an office address without the company name.
Also, ensure you’ve packed all sanitary items like pads or tampons and pain killers. Before traveling, find out the general dress code for the country so that you don’t arrive and stick out from the crowd. Dressing similar to the local fashion will allow you to blend into the crowd which can make you feel more sensitive.
3. Safe Accommodation
When traveling alone, it is advised to stay in a hotel or guesthouse on a residential street that has a number of restaurants and late-night stores nearby as it is safer than staying in quieter corporate areas. When checking in, use your initials and surname without titles.
A good tip is to also inquire is the residence offers staff services to escort guests to their room late at night if you feel unsafe. If you get to your room and the door is open or unlocked don’t enter the room. Instead, go to the front desk, alert the staff and request to be accompanied into the room.
4. Research Before Travel
Before you travel to any destination, be sure to read up on your destination. Do your research on which areas are safer or more dangerous for women traveling alone.
“Read as many forums and blog pages to know what to expect and what not to do. Places like Egypt, Algeria, Morocco, India, and Turkey were unsafe for female solo travelers. Some places, such as Saudi Arabia, do not allow women to travel if they are not escorted by a man,”says Jennifer Morris, the owner of Travel Savvy.
5. No One Needs To Know You Are Alone
The final tip is to never make it known that you are traveling alone. If any nosy strangers ask, simply respond that you are waiting for your friend or meeting your partner. Be aware of your surroundings and make small adjustments to ensure you always have an escape route if the situation gets risky.
Sit on the outside seat on a coach or train, and place your handbag, coat or jacket on the window seat if you don’t want company. In a bar or restaurant, put your coat on the back of the seat opposite you to give the impression that you have company. Have a plan in place on what to do if in fact you are attacked or something seems out of the ordinary. Being mentally prepared for any possibility is important.