Have you ever wanted to go travelling but wondered how to stay safe on a solo trip? Well, it’s a perfectly reasonable question to ask. Especially if you’re a woman. Nevertheless, it shouldn’t discourage you from travelling solo. I believe everyone should go travelling on their own at least once in their life.
No matter the age or the destination, as Nike says, ‘Just do it’. Why? Because not only will you discover wonderful places but also learn about other cultures and yourself too. Now, let me give you some advice on staying safe while travelling solo!
1. Be Brave and Stay Safe
Before you get out your trip planner and start looking for flights, do research. Are there terrorist threats or some internal conflicts in the place you want to visit? Sure, nowhere is 100% safe BUT some places are definitely safer than others.
Of course, everyone has a different definition of ‘safe’ so be your own judge and you should try to get out of your comfort zone a bit as well. However, if you don’t want your trip to be disrupted by civil disorder, do the homework. Go on to trustworthy sources like the Foreign, Commonwealth
& Development Office, or you own country’s Foreign Office equivalent and make sure you know what you’re signing up for.
2. Accommodation Situation
No matter how spontaneous you want your trip to be, have the first night’s accommodation booked. And make sure that it’s in a fairly save area so you don’t have to worry about unwelcome guests… To check the location look at travel blogs, reviews on websites like Booking.com etc. And remember – cheaper isn’t always better.
If you can, get to your stay during the day. You don’t want to be walking around the streets at night looking for your accommodation all alone. If that’s not an option and you’re flying in late at night, do get a taxi. Yes, it may cost you more but in the end will save you the trouble and the nerves.
3. Sharing is Caring
You may be flying solo for now, but it doesn’t mean you should cut contact with your friends and family. So, before you leave, give someone your trip planner details. Make sure that at least one person knows where you are at all times if you can. ‘Share your location’ is a great option if you’re connected to the Internet. Plus, I’m sure people will want to see all those amazing pictures you took so why not post them on social media?
4. Stay Humble
This is not the time to show off your brand new iPhone and a fancy DSLR camera. It’s no news that tourists are the perfect victims for pick-pocketers and thieves. So, stay observant and use your common sense when sightseeing. You can still take Instagram-worthy pictures, just be vigilant when you do so. And please, leave your Cartier jewellery at home.
5. Lock It Up
I hope you already know this, but don’t walk around with your passport, credit cards and cash in your pockets. Leave your valuables at the hotel! So, find an accommodation with in-room safes or ask the front desk if they have one. And when you’re going out, just take what you need for that day. Extra tip, stash your cash, credit cards and a photocopy of your passport’s data page (if you really need one) in separate pockets.
6. Now You See Me, Now You Don’t
Blend in. This is probably the best way to not get robbed. Try to look like a local as much as you can. Learn the customs and dress code of where you’re travelling to. Some parts of the globe, like Islamic countries, are known for women dressing modest without showing too much skin.
Don’t walk around with a map in you hands, you’re practically asking to get mugged.