A great number of people get nervous or anxious when it comes to traveling alone, whether for business or just for pleasure. And with the increasing number of single women travelers across the world, being prepared to face and overcome all types of traveling issues is essential, and even more important if it’s your first time doing it.
So here are some useful tips to consider if you want to make your solo traveling experience a more pleasant one.
First things first:
1. Know Where You Are Going
Surf the internet a little bit about your destination; search for things like food, dress code, the weather, and laws of the country you are visiting, as these differ greatly throughout the world. If you are already there and need some directions, instead of asking local people, try asking the hotel staff – they will help you avoid places that are deemed as unsafe.
2. Choose Accommodation Wisely
Search for the location, rooms available, services, menu options, and then the price. You can find some great deals using online services like (my favorite) airbnb.com. One great piece of advice is speaking with the hotel manager before booking if you’re interested in staying — they will offer you a better service, and might even offer some extra deals. Who knows, you may be treated so well on your travels, or fall in love with one of your destinations, that you need to sell your California house fast.
If traveling to a big city:
- Avoid taking taxi cabs. They may seem like a cheap and quick option, however, you won’t know if they are taking the correct way or if they are even safe. A far better option is renting a car or booking in advance with legitimate companies online. There are some great private airport transportation services in which you don’t need to shop around because their agents already do it for you.
- Know the best city areas and locations. You should avoid visiting insecure neighborhoods or areas. In big cities like Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, etc., there are many unsafe areas, so it’s recommended that you do some online research about them, and be aware when you get to your destination.
- Be patient. You’d better be physically and mentally prepared for long lines, large crowds, and many people trying to do or see the same things that you want. Anger and stress just won’t make things get better, so you need to get used to it and enjoy the rest of the trip.
- Avoid expending too much money on “fancy stuff.” There are many money-saving tips you can do like planning your everyday meals (where to go, how much to spend, etc.) and maybe try to eat by the season. There are many people who enjoy eating in elegant restaurants and spending lots of money eating while traveling, but if you are not one of those people you better save some money (and calories) having less fancy snacks.
3. Keep Your Wallet Light and Your Documents Safe
If your travel documents get lost, they can cause you a lot of trouble. Try keeping a credit card, this way you won’t carry too much cash in your wallet; also have a backup one with you if the other one gets lost and use it to pay for your expenses.
To keep all things safe and out-of-sight, try getting a money belt; they can be worn under your clothes to keep a passport, credit cards ,or cash. You can search for them online in places like eBay for different colors and styles.
Lastly, leave all return travel tickets, papers, and immigration documents at your hotel’s safety box. They are safer there, you won’t be carrying them around everywhere, and they hold no monetary value (so no reason for anyone to steal them). Also, avoid bringing expensive jewelry when possible, as this will be a magnet for thieves.
4. Pack Light
Seriously? You don’t need all those clothes if you are going on a business trip. To help you travel lighter, try getting a practical garment bag; they are pretty useful when it comes to these kinds of trips. And don’t worry, you can always mix and match the same clothes and accessories to make them look like a completely different outfit.
5. Dress for the Occasion and with Modesty
Try wearing what the local women tend to use and dress accordingly to avoid possible harassment. Remember that safety is always first, and in some places, you need to consider laws and regulations surrounding your attire. After all, the last thing you want to do is offend other people by dressing inappropriately.
You should also consider taking comfortable outfits, and some according to your destination’s weather.
6. Always Trust your Gut
Relax, your gut is very wise and will get you out of many situations. But remember to be careful with strangers; do not trust people too quickly – we all know that sometimes we start trusting people before we should.
Heeding this advice will ensure that you are safe and secure in your travels, but remember to stay in touch with your loved ones and let them know how and where to locate you.