8 Safety Tips For Traveling Solo So You Can Make The Most Of Your Upcoming Trip
Traveling alone is something you should try at least once, but it's important to do your research so you're as prepared as possible. Though it can be an incredible learning experience, there are a few things you should keep at the front of your mind when you're exploring on your own. According to Redditors, these eight safety tips for traveling solo are some of the most crucial ones.
You may have gotten the urge to take a solo trip after Eat, Pray, Love came out. Yes, of course I want to be Julia Roberts and eat delicious spaghetti and pizza. And, as it turns out, I'm not the only one. Each year, more of us are looking to satisfy our thirst for venturing out alone.
For instance, according to Travel Daily, solo travel was preferred by many in 2018 and could be on the rise. The outlet reported that according to Intrepid Travel, 70% of the people who signed up for its U.S. trips were traveling solo in 2018. Additionally, Trekk Blog says that between 2016 and 2017, the monthly search volume for "solo female travel" on-average jumped by over 50%.
There's no doubt that traveling with your squad will make for memories that last a lifetime. But the numbers don't lie: lots of people seem just as interested in seeing the world all by themselves too.
If this sounds like something you might want to try, don’t take your safety for granted. Here are eight simple tips you should take into account before you start planning your dream vacation.
1. Act Like You Belong
There are many reasons criminals target tourists, especially those who travel alone and look like they're traveling alone.
If you’re going somewhere without company, then this Redditor recommends that you act like you’re a local in the area. For example, figure out directions to your next destination ahead of time, don’t take too many photos, and try not to be that person standing in the middle of the street staring at a map.
2. Let Your Family Know Your Itinerary
Make sure at least one person close to you knows what flights you're taking and where you're staying. There should always be someone who knows how to track you down, or at least where to begin looking. One way to achieve this is by sharing your location with someone you trust.
Furthermore, update your family on your whereabouts and check in with them once a day. This way, they know you’re safe, and they’ll have an idea of where to reach you in case of an emergency.
3. Avoid Unfamiliar Areas At Night
If you don’t know the area so well, then try to stay in its safe parts — places with a lot of people, noise, and light. If it seems relatively deserted with little to no activity, steer clear.
Safety is a priority, so avoid going to unfamiliar areas where there aren't many people.
4. Bring A Door Stopper
Yes, hotel rooms have a lock and key, but you might sleep better at night and feel safer if you put a door stopper beneath your door before going to bed. This is especially comforting if you're Airbnb-ing it.
Door stoppers are small and easy to throw in your travel bag, and you'll have an added layer of protection against unauthorized entry.
5. Be Careful Who You Tell You're Traveling Alone
As sad as it is to acknowledge it, there are people with bad intentions. And people with bad intentions are looking for an easy target.
So, when you’re out making friends or chatting it up with locals, don’t volunteer the fact that you’re traveling alone.
6. Bring Emergency Cash With You
Believe it or not, there are still shops that might not accept credit cards. It’s always a wise idea to have some extra cash on hand. Plus, you never know when a card reader won't accept your card.
And let's hope this doesn't happen, but we've all had that one friend who lost their wallet on vacation or had it stolen. Keep extra cash handy somewhere else, in case of an emergency.
It’s also good to take photos of important documents — like your passport and IDs — on your phone and then store them in the cloud.
7. Get To Know The Layout Of Your Accommodations
8. Trust Your Instinct
Sometimes, your instinct is your best weapon. It's there to do a job and tell you when something just isn't right, so don't doubt it. If you feel that there’s something amiss, then trust your instinct and leave the area ASAP.
If you're planning an epic solo adventure in the near future, you can also check out this list of things to know before you hit the road alone.