Lately, it feels like we can’t get away from harrowing stories of women being attacked, robbed, or worse, while vacationing alone. What should be a fun time globe-trotting and sight-seeing, are instead cautionary tales of what can happen if you are not prepared.
If you have a love for travel, we want you to feel secure while doing so. Therefore, we’ve come up with a checklist of 5 tips to keep you safe.
5 Safety Tips for Women When Traveling Abroad
1. Research Your Destination
The fun part of planning your trip is getting to know what your destination has to offer. But getting to know the area and its outskirts are what’s going to be lifesaving for your trip.
Is there a certain style of dress expected of women for the location you plan to visit? Or a specific style of clothing locals wear? What are the neighborhoods like bordering your hotel or Airbnb? Where’s the nearest hospital/police station?
Gather as much information prior to your trip as possible so that you feel more like a local than a tourist.
2. Make Connections with Female Travel Staff
From the minute you board the plane, begin your relationship building. Ask female flight attendants if they are familiar with the area you are traveling to and if they have any tips they can recommend.
At the hotel, give your map to the female staff and ask them to mark off unsafe neighborhoods. Have them book your dining reservations and any taxis. When coming and going, it’s important to make eye contact with the staff, that way if you feel you are being followed, they can be alerted by your facial expression.
If sight-seeing, make contact with female employees at the various locations, such as museums, parks, entertainment venues, to make sure they know you are traveling alone and so that they are much more cognizant of any suspicious activity/interactions.
3. Make Backups of Important Documents
Dropbox, Google Drive, etc. are your best friends should any of your important travel documents and/or credit cards get lost or stolen. Make all copies in advance, front and back.
4. Bring a Rubber Doorstop
A doorstop is a simple, but brilliant idea to give you another level of safety in your hotel room to prevent anyone from trying to force themselves into your room.
5. Check In Often: Text/email loved ones frequently on your trip.
Make sure at least one person knows where you are at all times. When traveling alone, enabling the GPS on your phone, Fitbit and any other technology you happen to bring with you will be to your benefit should you lose contact with your family.
It’s entirely possible to travel alone as a woman and do so safely. Just take extra precautions, heed any warnings and always trust your gut!
Related: 5 Summer Finds Under $30