Some of the widespread emails I get from solo feminine journey hopefuls is with regard to security. Possibly you’re anxious that being alone will make you a goal, your family and friends are telling you that you just’re being irresponsible by going out into this huge and scary world by yourself, or your personal inner-voice is holding you again with visions of worst-case eventualities.
Nicely screw all of that!
I’ve traveled for over ten years now, virtually completely on my own, and even in nations which might be thought-about ‘harmful’, with virtually no points in any way. What’s my secret? I consider that touring alone has really helped me keep protected. Why? My instinct is sharper, I’m extra conscious of my environment as a result of there’s no one distracting me, and when locals see me, a woman on her personal, they’re extra seemingly to need to assist me than hurt me.
The reality is, you have already got the talents you want to keep protected once you journey. They’re the identical abilities you utilize at residence to keep protected. However you don’t have to take my phrase alone for it. I requested 30 different solo feminine vacationers to give me their greatest security ideas for touring alone, and that is what now we have to say about solo feminine journey security:
Belief Your Intestine
1. Politeness is rarely extra essential than security.
The world could be a greater place if everybody was considerate and type. Typically individuals (particularly ladies) let courtesy override our intestine instincts as a result of we don’t need to be impolite or be instructed we’re “overreacting.” We should always all the time belief our instinct and cease worrying about what different individuals suppose. Be good once you need to, and select security once you don’t.
2. If one thing feels off, it most likely is.
It’s SO essential to go together with your instincts. In the event you really feel like one thing is off, it most likely is. On the similar time, in case your intestine tells you it’s all good, it most likely is. Belief me, my intestine virtually by no means lets me down.
3. Have a backup to couchsurfing, all the time.
In the event you’re couchsurfing and the state of affairs feels uncomfortable, simply go away! Be sure to have alternate lodging in thoughts. Print out or write down the addresses of the closest hostels so you realize you will have someplace to go in case your preparations go south.
4. Don’t make too many assumptions.
Be open to positivity and don’t assume everyone seems to be out to get you. I truthfully hardly ever even take into consideration ‘security’ per se as I discover most all of us pleasant and useful and never out to by some means hurt me. Such hurt can come by way of strolling down the road of my hometown after darkish, and I see little distinction if I’m backpacking throughout South Africa (sure, even in -OMG- Johannesburg), skipping round Egypt, or touring in Colombia.
Stay Conscious and Be Much less of a Goal
5. Cover cash: the tampon trick.
Conceal money by rolling it up tightly and sticking it in an empty tampon applicator (unused!!). Slide it again into the wrapper and also you’re set. Not many pickpockets will attempt to steal a tampon out of your pocket!
6. Don’t flaunt your valuables.
Don’t flaunt your valuables an excessive amount of. This could appear apparent, however you’d be stunned how many individuals I see with their telephones out on metropolis streets or sporting jewellery after they journey! Simply hold it hidden or at residence. You don’t want to put on costly rings and earrings once you journey.
7. …or simply go away them at residence.
When doubtful, simply journey with out fancy jewellery. More often than not you don’t want it, and why danger being robbed only for the bling?
8. Don’t use headphones whereas strolling.
It makes you much less conscious of your environment and in addition normally signifies to a would-be mugger that you just most likely have a smartphone in your pocket.
9. Faux to speak on the telephone.
If you find yourself strolling alone someplace, fake you’re on the telephone. Muggers will most likely ignore you for worry that you possibly can tip somebody off.
10. Stroll together with your head held excessive.
I’m a giant advocate of strolling together with your again straight and your head held excessive and searching individuals proper within the eye after they tackle you. Be taught to stroll like a person.
11. Get acquainted with native scams.
Be sure to know of common scams and downside areas throughout the metropolis/area the place you’re planning to journey. This isn’t to scare you foolish earlier than you begin touring, however slightly simply to be extra conscious of the place you’re heading to.
12. Thoughts the booze.
It’s okay to have a few drinks however getting drunk in a international and unknown place may put you in peril and get you misplaced.
13. …and different substances.
Merely put, medicine put you in a weak place. Plus, consuming them contributes to drug trafficking, which is a giant no-no in any case. It’s not value it.
14. Learn up on modest gown.
Dressing appropriately can prevent quite a lot of hassle, analysis acceptable clothes for girls wherever you go. Areas which might be sizzling and humid are usually extra snug in shorts and sleeveless tops, however they will not be appropriate for sure traditions, cultures, and areas.
15. Maintain your issues with you.
When taking a taxi, hold your stuff with you within the again seat so that you just retain management over when you will get out. It may be helpful if the cab is taking an extended route, tries to overcharge you, or if issues really feel uncomfortable. Every time doable, put your bag within the again seat with you, so should you ever want to bounce out shortly, you possibly can!
Speak to Locals
16. Take a strolling tour on day one.
A strolling tour is likely one of the greatest methods to heat up to a brand new vacation spot. It provides you the lay of the town, and helps you discover your method round with out getting misplaced the primary time. Tour guides will normally level out any areas you may want to avoid (in addition to cool native spots that aren’t out there on journey guidebooks), which is able to show you how to really feel extra assured about discovering your personal method across the metropolis after being led by an skilled.
17. Strive a enjoyable class.
Mix enjoyable and security with this tip. I really like taking a ballet class at a neighborhood dance faculty to meet locals (you possibly can do the identical with a yoga or different class). Locals may give you a fantastic thought of the place to go and what to keep away from, plus, in the event that they present you round that’s even higher!
18. Discover doable connections.
Do you have already got connections within the nation? Ask round on Fb or ask locals. After I was touring alone, I requested a neighborhood good friend whether or not he knew anybody within the city with who I may journey along with. It seems that he has a nephew who was having fun with faculty vacation and will accompany me to discover the best way locals do. I recommend solo feminine vacationers who’re planning to journey to cities perceived as harmful to go searching at their pals to see if they’ve any connections to native residents on the vacation spot metropolis.
19. Search for different ladies.
From my expertise, ladies take care of ladies, which is heartwarming. I journey solo, and native ladies are sometimes actually useful. After I meet these ladies, I’m not alone.
20. Watch out on apps.
A lot of vacationers like to obtain relationship apps like Tinder and Bumble to meet individuals whereas they’re touring. This will really be a enjoyable method to meet locals, however be tremendous cautious. At all times let somebody know the place you’re going and make it clear to your date what your intentions are.
21. Be taught a little bit of the native language.
Not less than having the ability to say “thanks” or “hi there” can assist construct belief with individuals and present them you’ve made an effort to study your vacation spot. I feel this makes individuals extra seemingly to show you how to should you want it.
22. Stroll strategically.
If I’m touring solo after darkish, I’ll typically stroll comparatively shut to a pair or a household. Often, if I shoot them a smile, they’ll see that I’m not stalking them however as a substitute trying to stroll with individuals. You’re much less of a goal should you’re by different individuals. In the event you ever do really feel such as you’re being adopted, pop into the closest restaurant or lodge. These normally have somebody who speaks English they usually’re very happy to assist.
23. Don’t be stingy on transportation.
One other tip that got here up a number of instances is understanding when to splurge and when to save. Don’t be a cheapskate is my new motto after spending an evening in a seedy place alone.
24. Go for Uber when you possibly can.
This counts for taxis, too. Personally, I all the time use Uber once I’m in South Africa or a rustic the place taxis are sometimes managed by gangsters. The app tracks the driving force and you, retaining each of your info within the system. Even higher, the fee is completed by means of the app by way of bank card so no cash is exchanged. Journey budgets are an excellent factor, however be keen to ‘splurge’ when it relates to your security. Pay for taxis at night time as a substitute of strolling alone.
25. See if there are some other ride-sharing apps.
Some locations don’t have Uber however may need alternate options like DiDi and Seize, which work precisely like Uber however are sometimes cheaper. They monitor your journey the identical method, so they’re simply as protected.
26. Select your driver properly.
One other good taxi tip should you don’t have a SIM card to use Uber is to take the driving force who’s least or possibly even sleeping. Chances are high decrease that he/she may have malicious plans!
27. Don’t journey at night time.
Keep away from touring by prepare/bus/taxi by night time if doable. Organize to arrive at a brand new location within the gentle of day. Not solely will you’re feeling extra relaxed and give you the option to be extra conscious of your environment however there may also be extra individuals round, providing you with a safer feeling.
28. Have your lodging particulars available.
I all the time seize the enterprise card or ask entrance desk/concierge to write down the title, tackle, and telephone variety of my lodging. That method if I get misplaced or am in a cab and may’t talk with a driver, I can hand it to them and I can get again residence.
29. Solely take official taxis.
Analysis what official taxis appear like in your vacation spot and solely take these. In lots of locations, there are pretend taxis that may really be a part of human trafficking schemes and different crimes.
Deliver These With You
30. A dummy pockets
Carry decoy cash in a dummy pockets. Protecting most of your money in your bra/cash belt/wherever is nice, but when somebody needs money from you and you don’t have anything to hand them, they might get offended and even violent. I all the time hold a number of small payments in my pockets simply in case, and the larger payments elsewhere.
31. Mosquito spray as a weapon
In lots of nations, reminiscent of most of Europe, carrying mace or pepper spray is taken into account a hid weapon. To get round this, I’d recommend utilizing mosquito spray as a substitute or utilizing a miniature hairspray as a sneaky pepper spray alternative. All of these harm after they get into somebody’s eyes.
32. A private alarm
Most crimes are crimes of alternative, so it’s actually all about placing your self within the ‘too onerous’ basket. Think about carrying a private security alarm (the Vigilant one) in your pocket that provides off a hell of a sound should you have been to pull it.
33. Door stopper
Put money into an alarm door cease (solely like $15) that each slows somebody in opening your door and in addition sounds an alarm when somebody is making an attempt to open it.
I put a flashlight in my shoe. If there’s ever an emergency at night time I fear I’d overlook a flashlight- however I’d all the time put my sneakers on!
In the event you’re tenting or staying someplace with rustic lodging (aka, with an out of doors lavatory), hold your self protected from critters or creepers by bringing a headlamp. That method, you’ll have loads of gentle, and it’s hands-free.
36. A slash-proof bag
Deliver slash-proof, RFID-blocking, and locking baggage with you. I religiously use my PacSafe cross-body bag and wire mesh bag protector and to date, knock on wooden, have by no means had something notable stolen. No methodology is totally fail-proof, however by utilizing gadgets like these, I make myself probably the most troublesome and annoying particular person within the visitor home or on the road to rob.
37. Moveable protected
That is comparable to the slash-proof bag, however will be locked with a padlock. Pacsafe has these they usually’re tremendous handy as a result of you possibly can go away your valuables in your lodging or deliver them with you safely.
38. Test in with somebody at residence.
While you don’t have to test in with household or pals day by day, it may be a good suggestion to repeatedly replace some type of social media whereas on the street. Whether or not it’s Twitter, Fb, Instagram, and even Foursquare/Swarm, these digital breadcrumbs may give peace of thoughts to others that you just’re protected, wherever you might be.
39. Share your dwell location.
You possibly can share your dwell location for up to a day at a time with Whatsapp. That method, somebody will know precisely the place you might be should you’re mountain climbing or strolling anyplace unfamiliar.
40. Maintain somebody within the loop of your plans.
Let others know of your journey plans. I electronic mail individuals a duplicate of my itinerary and allow them to know if I alter it.
Most Importantly, Take pleasure in It
41. Get probably the most out of your solo expertise.
Typically you want to be alone. To get some peace, to get house to suppose, and to be at peace with the world and oneself. Typically that is solely doable when there aren’t any different individuals round when you will have time to speak to your self, pay attention to your self, and go away go of all of the hectic and stress of on a regular basis life. Take pleasure in this time. Take your time and do no matter YOU need. Go for a stroll (within the daytime) simply by your self, sit in a café, go in a museum or do one thing adventurous. It may be something. And take a look at additionally not to converse to anybody. Simply your self. You will notice that you just really get pleasure from your personal firm far more than you’ll have anticipated.
I hope these security ideas show you how to keep protected and assured, and should you ever want a little bit encouragement, simply keep in mind what number of ladies are on the market touring alone and having a superb time doing it! What are your high Three security ideas when touring alone?