Travel is a wonderful thing. If you are reading this article, we probably do not need to convince you of this or extol the virtues of setting off to new destinations. You also probably know that there are many different ways of experiencing a journey. Family trips, outings with close friends, and romantic getaways with a partner have all a particular appeal. However, most people fret a the idea of travelling alone. This is particularly true if you are a female traveller, as many people will try to dissuade you from doing so claiming that the dangers outweigh the benefits. But is this really so and how can you minimise the risks while travelling as a solo female?
Alone doesn’t Mean Lonely
You will find plenty of opportunities to make new friends while on your trip, so don’t make the mistake of assuming that solo travel equals boredom and loneliness. For a solo female traveller, the chance of meeting other people (possibly other solo female travellers) can also help you feel more secure and confident. Check travel forums such as Lonely Planet or Wandermates while on the road too, as you will increase your chances of sharing part of your trip with other people in the same circumstances.
Pack Light, Worry Less
If you arrive at your destination lugging around a big suitcase or a heavy backpack, you will not only limit your mobility, but also may attract unwanted attention from petty thieves on buses and other public places. Avoid bulky luggage and travel as light as possible. If you must take any valuables with you, put them away safely when they are not being used, perhaps by locking them at a hotel’s safe or by leaving them with reception staff.
Choose your Accommodation Wisely
Always make sure that you book your first night of accommodation in advance before arriving into a new city. If you choose to stay in a hotel, request a room away from the main floor, and if you are feeling particularly apprehensive, invest in a portable security lock that makes your door virtually impossible to open from the outside.
Another alternative is to book yourself onto a cruise. You will always be surrounded by other people and there are plenty of staff around to keep an eye on security issues. What could be better than treating yourself to one of the Caribbean cruises offered by Celebrity cruises for your first solo travel experience?
When in Rome…
… do as the Romans do, so research well in advance what the local customs are at your destination, especially in terms of clothing, make up, and demeanor. Meanings and intentions can be easily lost in cross-cultural translation, and you want to avoid misunderstandings that can put yourself in a dangerous situation. In some destinations you simply won’t be able to blend into the crowd, but always do your best to dress modestly and remain as inconspicuous as you can.
Lose the Fear
Whether you are in a remote mountain village or in a huge metropolis, walking around fearing the worst will make you an easy target for any potential wrongdoers. Walk around confidently (and to do that you need to research your destination and be knowledgeable) and enjoy the opportunities that solo travel brings to those who dare try it.