Although this is 2017 and feminism has become a household term, there are still certain inevitable things that come with being a girl or a woman. One of the things is safety, especially when traveling alone without a companion. There has been a lot cases of women getting robbed, raped, conned, but there are also many female travelers who totally nailed traveling alone.
It’s always better to be safe than sorry, so here are some precautions you can take if you are a woman traveling alone.
Never book a late flight
When you decide to go to a certain destination and about to book a ticket, please do yourself a big favour and do not book a flight that lands at your destination late at night. In fact, I would go as far as to say that you should make sure not to land after the sun has set. This probably sounds very old-fashioned and even chauvinistic, but hey, like I said earlier, better safe than sorry. Depending on where you’re going, I’d suggest taking a flight where you are scheduled to land around noon, so you can proceed straight to your hotel for check in. Yes, crimes do take place during the day as well, but it gets much more dangerous at night!
Opt for public transport
Try to opt for public transport as much as you can. A lot of rape and kidnapping cases happen when you’re alone in a cab, because they can easily drive you to any destination, you will not even know the difference because you don’t know the place. Public transport, like trains and buses, have a designated route that they cannot stray away from, and you’re also surrounded by many locals who will know if something is not right, so relatively they’re much, much safer to travel in.
Don’t scrimp on accommodation
When you’re traveling alone, it’s best not to scrimp on accommodation. If you’re traveling in a group, feel free to get a hostel or motel away from the city so you can split the cost with your friends and travel in a group. But when you’re traveling solo, it’s best to stay close to the city center, and stay in a verified hotel. Always make sure to read online reviews to check for comments on security, theft, break-ins, before booking that particular hotel. In fact, many cities now have an all-female hotel or dorm for your safety.
Always let a friend know where you are
It’s much, much easier to stay in touch with your friends now than it was even five years ago. With social platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, WhatsApp, WeChat, just to name a few, you can easily update your friends and family members about your whereabouts. Since you are alone in a foreign city or country, always let someone know where you are heading to, who are you meeting, and when you’re safely back home. In case of any emergency, at least someone will know where you are and who were you with. You can also use the check-in feature on Facebook so your friends and family back home can keep track of your itinerary.
Having said that, remember to bring your adapters and make sure your phone is always fully charged!
Be careful with alcohol
When you’re traveling solo, be careful when you strike up a conversation with a stranger or when they ask you out on a date. Not saying that all men are the same or they cannot be trusted, but you should always be wary. We have seen countless videos on Facebook and Youtube on how easy it is to spike a woman’s drink, even with a friend next to you. So be extra careful when you’re alone. Always drink within your limits, have your hotel address on stand-by, and never get too wasted when you’re alone and have to rely on strangers to get you home.
Carry a map or guidebook
If you’re in a country where you don’t speak the language, like China, India, or Brazil, for example, make sure you have a bilingual dictionary on stand-by. Write down or highlight all the important, urgent phrases that you know you will need in your notebook. Or better yet, carry an empty notebook with you so you can easily draw what you need. In addition to that, always have a map with you, and always remember to store a card from your hotel in case you’re lost and need directions.
Do plenty of research
When you’re traveling solo, research is your best friend. Read up online as much as you can, post questions on online forums, ask your friends, read reviews, leave no stones unturned before you click on that “buy flight ticket” or “book hotel room” button. Make no compromises and make sure you have enough information about the place before going over. As a female solo traveler, your safety comes first, and make no exceptions!
Besides the safety tips given above, travel essentials is another important stuffs for a female traveler! Head to ezbuy for collecting your essentials checklists right now.