Every year thousands men and women make the decision to travel solo. Solo female travel has increased tremendously, there are many safety concerns from loved ones. In effort to ease fears, here are five tips for solo travel that can be used on your next domestic or international trip.
Do Your Research
Remember to research for any travel alerts and warnings for your destination. Always find out where the US embassy is if it is out of the country. Some people suggest wearing a fake wedding band or engagement ring to avoid cat calls. It is also important to be mindful of your clothing choice and try your best to “blend in”.
Tell Your Friends and Family
Share a copy of your itinerary with your close friends or immediate family members. Make sure it includes airline, hotel or lodging information, and a number to contact you directly. Try to set a specific time each day (or time frame that you choose) to call, text or check-in via social media with friends or family. Doing so keeps them informed of your whereabouts.
Bring ONE Carry on
Try your best to pack everything in one carry on. Multiple shoes aren’t necessary and basic essentials or toiletries can be purchased at your destination. You can even hand wash undergarments and tops. Having one carry on saves time, is less of a distraction, and you don’t have to worry about lost checked luggage. To keep clothing organized in your suitcase, look into investing in packing cubes.
Learn the Language
You don’t have to speak a language fluently, but try to be conversational. If you’re visiting a country where English isn’t the primary language, learn simple phrases to ease the language barrier. Common phrases like ‘Hello‘, ‘Goodbye‘, ‘Thank you‘, and ‘Where is the restroom?‘ can help in shops, restaurants, bars, and other public areas. If learning a new language isn’t your thing, get a translator app for your smartphone or handheld device.
Always make sure you’re mindful of your surroundings. If taking public transportation, don’t get on an empty train or bus and try not to fall asleep. Trust your gut; if something doesn’t feel or look right, don’t continue. Know your alcohol limit in bars and restaurants. If you stay in a hotel, keep the “do not disturb” sign on and keep the lights and television on when leaving your room. Someone is less likely to enter the room if they think someone is there.
Domestic or international, your safety is always most important, but don’t forget to have FUN. Take lots of pictures, and enjoy the freedom of your solo travels.
Do you have any tips for solo travel? Share them in the comments below.