Traveling is a fun activity whether you’re married, a couple, in a group, or a solo flight. However, being a solo traveler does not mean you can not have fun as much as others who are traveling in a group or with a company.
Being a solo traveler and a woman at that poses higher risks than other people who are in a group. For starters, the world is not a very safe place anymore. There are plenty of places to visit though that are still safe considering the news we hear but being a tourist in those places still make you an easy target of petty crimes.
It can’t be helped that you will sometimes have to travel on your own for whatever reason it is. Just read on for tips on how to stay safe while abroad and alone.
1. Don’t be too obvious by carrying maps, camera and looking lost. People might be observing you and you don’t want to be the attention of something not good.
2. Don’t wear flashy jewelries or don’t wear any at all. Unless you are going to a gala, ball or a formal event then do so but try to subdue your jewelry so it won’t get too much attention. And if you have to, rent a car so you don’t have to commute going to your destination.
3. Do not accept any assistance or a ride from a stranger. If there is an emergency, you can always dial help or call the police. In this case, you have to familiarize yourself with the important numbers of the country you are visiting.
4. Do not accept any invitation to go out from someone you hardly know. That’s a no brainer!
5. If you’re being adventurous, try to stick to the usual touristy area where there are plenty of people. Do not wander off from your hotel or go to secluded areas whether it is day or night.
6. Never disclose that you are traveling alone. If people ask, tell them your husband is waiting at the bar or you are to meet in a certain place or you’re in a group of travelers.
7. Obtain a seat in your flight or train coach where there are plenty of families around you.
8. Try to avoid shady budget accommodations. A few splurges when it comes to safety is better that being sorry.
9. Avoid getting a room in high floors or in ground floors. Avoid rooms with plenty of windows especially in the lower floors where it can be accessed. Avoid rooms at the far end of the hotel or somewhere in the darkened corner. Get a room near the elevator.
10. Inform the hotel to never give out your information to anyone.
11. Do not call for room service very late at night.
12. Do not open your hotel room door for any maintenance if someone comes at your door and claims they are from maintenance. Tell them to wait and call the concierge or the hotel manager and ask for the identity of the person sent to your room.
13. Always take photocopies of your travel documents and cards and keep them safe in your locked luggage.
14. Do use a cross-body kind of bag so you don’t have to keep worrying if the bag will fall off your shoulder. This kind of bag frees both of your hands and arms and can easily give a blow to someone who is aiming to harm you.
15. Do not open door when you hear noises in the hallway or near your room to check. Call the security when you hear suspicious sounds.
16. Check the lift before you go in if you suspect you’re being followed. Or better yet, go straight to the concierge and ask for any staff or security personnel to escort you. I would certainly suggest that a lady staff and a security personnel escort you.
17. Always check the doors and windows of your hotel room are locked before you sleep.
18. Try not to switch all the lights off. Leave a lamp on to illuminate the whole room.
19. If you need to get a rental car, do not park far from the entrance of the building or somewhere dense and dark. Always park where there are plenty of cars and traffic and well-lit.
20. Do not take a hitch-hiker to ride with you at any cost.
21. Keep your car doors and windows closed and locked at all times.
22. Avoid driving at night.
23. If your car breaks down. Do not get out or accept help from others. Dial assistance or the police. Although I discourage the use of rental car if it can be helped simply because there is so much potential risk when a lone lady driver ventures out to unfamiliar places. It does not make it very safe.
24. Always keep a spare mobile battery should you have an emergency.
Remember to be alert at all times and always join group tours if you have too. Try to not stay long in a foreign place when you are alone. There’s really nothing wrong when traveling solo but it is best to practice common sense and caution at all times.