Traveling solo as a woman is a profoundly liberating and empowering experience. The sense of personal freedom and the expansive potential that every day presents are simultaneously inspirational and intimidating.
While many people may warn against the potential dangers of traveling alone as a woman, you should not let the anxieties of others sabotage your dreams. That said, it’s incredibly important to take care of your wellness and safety on these journeys.
We’ve compiled a list of 12 highly recommended wellness and safety guidelines for women traveling solo. If you can integrate the teachings of these valuable tips, your solo traveling adventures will be all the more magical.
1. Always Do Your Research
When it comes to planning any travel—especially solo travel—the first step is always to conduct thorough research on the places you’re visiting ahead of time.
Most people will remember to look up the best museums, restaurants, hostels, and natural attractions. But many neglect to read up on the safety-related characteristics of the area.
If at all possible, reserve your accommodation ahead of time and try to stay in a relatively safe area. Ensure that your transport is at least semi-reliable, and try to travel during the daytime. You will be able to access this information easily online.
2. Divide Your Money
We all know the saying “don’t put all your eggs in one basket.” This is especially important when it comes to financial matters.
Try to diversify your access to funds as much as possible. In an ideal world, you should have multiple cards that link to more than one bank account.
Setting up an international traveler’s wallet is also immensely useful and, even if you do not use it for day-to-day payments, it’s an excellent back up.
You should always travel with a reasonable amount of the relevant currency in cash. This allows you to minimize international withdrawal fees and transaction costs. Always be sure to store your cash in multiple secure locations when traveling.
3. Be Private About Your Itinerary
You should never share your itinerary on social media prior to or during your trip. This information will betray where you will be on specific days and this makes you more susceptible to being the victim of a scam.
Although it may seem extreme, we would advise against tagging a specific location on your Facebook or Instagram posts. This creates a digital footprint that makes it easier to track your history and predict your future movements.
4. Keep in Contact
It’s important to always keep at least one person in the loop. Share your itinerary with them and notify them of when you leave and arrive at your destination. If you ever feel uncomfortable, share your live location with them.
It may provide you both with some peace of mind if you download an app that syncs your current whereabouts at every minute of the day.
5. Travel Insurance
Travel insurance is an absolute game changer. Even if you never need it—and hopefully you don’t—it will provide you with a general sense of ease that’s absolutely invaluable. It’s helpful in a multitude of scenarios.
Depending on your package, travel insurance can cover anything from canceled flights and lost luggage to minor or severe injuries.
6. Plan Your Commute
We would always recommend traveling during the daytime. This is particularly important if you are traveling to an unknown location. This links back to our point about research.
Check out various commuting options and opt for the one that suits your budget and safety requirements.
That said, an overnight bus, or train provides transport as well as a night of accommodation. If it arrives in the morning, then it’s both safe, convenient, and cost-effective.
7. Small Steps
If you are feeling nervous about traveling solo, you’re not alone. We would advise first taking a local trip where the customs, culture, and language are already mostly familiar. This allows you to build up confidence for future adventures.
8. Your Bag is Important
Ensure that your luggage is lockable and that your daily backpack is secure. Avoid the temptation to only utilize fashionable handbags and rather opt for a safer and more comfortable backpack.
Use a small padlock to ensure nobody is able to sneakily unzip your bag in a crowded space.
9. Trust Your Gut
Irrational fears should not rule your life. There is only so much that you can do to care for your wellness and safety while traveling solo. Eventually, you need to embrace the experience wholeheartedly and trust that everything will work out.
You might be surprised at the power and accuracy of your intuition. Let it guide you in daily choices as well as bigger decisions.
10. Walk and Cycle Often
Staying active and traveling often go hand in hand. If you’re traveling in a region, that’s reasonably safe, then we recommend walking and cycling between destinations as frequently as possible.
Since you might not always have time to go for a run or do forty-five minutes of body weights, this type of daily movement will do wonders for your overall wellness.
11. Stay Hydrated
Hydration is one of the fundamentals of physical health. Invest in a decent water bottle that keeps your drink cool throughout the day.
Not only does this minimize your use of environmentally unfriendly plastic bottles, but it encourages you to sip on water consistently throughout the day too.
When you are hydrated, you are more inclined to feel healthy and capable of embracing your solo adventures.
12. Wear Comfortable Shoes
A comfortable pair of shoes is the single most important wardrobe item to invest in before traveling. Ensure that they are worn in and comfortable prior to your departure so that you avoid uncomfortable blisters on your holiday.
Comfortable shoes that support your ankle stability and overall posture will allow you to walk further and experience more during your solo traveling journey.
Traveling is a wonderful way to broaden your horizons and grow as a person. In fact, some studies show that second to exercising, travel is the most common interest or hobby. There’s no denying that exploring the world is something we all benefit from.
These tips will help you to enjoy a happy, safe and healthy solo adventure, and to experience a new and enlightening side of life.