For women, going anywhere can be dangerous (there's a reason we tend to move in packs). Traveling solo requires one to be hyper-aware of her surroundings, especially in an unfamiliar country. Some of these tips may seem constricting and frustrating for independent women, but taking precautions to ensure your safety is the most important thing.
When traveling to a new place, it's vital to become familiar beforehand with the culture and customs. Understanding the norms of a city or country can inform a traveler how to dress, where to go, and what to avoid.
Try to Respect the Customs
Share Your Itinerary
In case of an emergency, sharing your itinerary is a good preemptive safety measure. On a lighter note, it's also nice to have someone to check-in with, especially when you're feeling lonely.
While this tip applies to all travelers, packing light can be extremely beneficial if you need to get out of somewhere quickly. It's difficult to run away from a dangerous situation when you're carrying a 50-pound bag.
Use a Door Stop
While a doorstop isn't the most obvious safety tool, it can prevent anyone from coming into your room.
Bring a Rape Whistle
Don't Divulge Too Much
In some places, being friendly can be interpreted as an open invitation for something more. Be mindful and don't share too much personal info. Specifically, never share where you're staying with a stranger.
Don't Get Drunk
Drinking can be a fun part of the travel experience. It's a great way to unwind during your downtime. But drinking to get drunk while alone can have serious consequences. Of course, it'd be ideal to get drunk and not have to worry about predatory men, but unfortunately, that's not how the world works.
Travel in Daylight
Similarly, don't roam around or stray too far from your base at night.
Take It Slow
Deciding to travel solo is a big step. For some, it may be an easier adjustment to start off somewhere less foreign. There's no shame in taking baby steps to get where you want to go!