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14 Vital Tips Every Woman MUST Keep In Mind When Traveling Alone

Traveling alone being a woman? Are you crazy?

I guess I am, and you want to follow suit! I congratulate you because you have already taken the first step towards this challenge of traveling alone by making up your mind to go for it! But there are a few things you are still worried about, namely:

  • How do I convince my family?
  • Won’t I feel lonely?
  • What if I get bored?
  • What if I am assaulted?
  • At the end of the day, I am a woman and the world is not my playground, howevermuch I might wish it to be so!

woman traveling_New_Love_Times

Image source: Google, copyright-free image under Creative Commons License

And the list goes on!

Suggested read: 10 reasons why travel trumps having a boyfriend

But if you subscribe to the following 14 tips that we have drawn up for you, we are sure that all your apprehensions will be put to rest and you will be hell-bent about taking the plunge!

1. Do your homework 

One thing that I have learnt through my solo travel is that research is vital! Go incognito in Chrome to check out the prices of things. It will not cache your search history and so airlines and hotels will have no clue about the dates you browsed through and thereby, won’t be able to raise rates. TripAdvisor is your second bestie. You will be requiring an account to surf through the reviews, but can use an incognito Chrome window to compare prices. Once you book a room, keep checking the rates as the date comes closer. If the hotel still has many empty rooms, they are likely to drop the prices. You can sign up again at a much lower rate. Last year, I saved $100 a night on my room! Cool, eh?!

2. Safety first

woman traveling_New_Love_Times

Image source: Google, copyright-free image under Creative Commons License

Safety, contrary to popular belief, has nothing to do with numbers or gender. It’s easier for a solo traveler to blend in with the locals than for a group. But nevertheless, there are a few things you must keep in mind. Find out if the inns at your destination are open late. You don’t want to sleep in a car in case your flight lands at an unexpected hour! Always keep your identification proof with you. Avoid dark alleys. Chuck paper maps and go for Google Maps instead. We don’t want the world to know that we are travelers in a foreign land, that too on our own!

3. Pack smart

When you are traveling alone, make certain that all your absolute essentials are in your carry bag instead of your luggage, in case you lose your luggage for some reason. This will include a complete change of outfits for hot, cold or wet weather, your sanitary pads, a pair of walking slip-ons, medication, and identification proofs. Divide your cash and credit cards in different spots so that if you misplace one set, the other is still there. Dress for ease and always have backup cash stashed on you.

4. You are not obliged to stay in hostels!

People will usually advice you to put up in a hostel or a guest house, as they lend themselves to get acquainted with fellow travelers quickly and relatively easily. They are also a safer alternative. But what I have learnt from my own experiences is that if comfort and leisure are your priorities, nothing compares to a reputable hotel. Also, there was a reason why you chose traveling alone in the first place! Guest houses and hostels are recommended only for those who are in need of companionship.

5. Don’t get too rash at the start or the end of a trip

girl traveling_New_Love_Times

Image source: Google, copyright-free image under Creative Commons License

A very valuable lesson that I have learnt after some of my solo travels is reeling in my drives on the first and the last night of my trips! These are the times when you are most in danger: when you just step down from the flight and when you are trying to get back home! On these nights, I suggest you take it easy. You might stay over at a hotel near the airport or the railway station or ask your hotel to book a private cab while you otherwise saved some money by opting for public transportation.

However, on other days, between these two nights, you are allowed to be a little impulsive! See, the best thing when you travel alone is that you can listen to your heart and not consult every move with a co-traveler!

6. Enquire about your transport options in advance

Google is the best way to go from ‘x’ to ‘y’ when you travel solo! In many places, public transport is quicker, economical, and safer than a cab! Check with the hotel you are putting up at. Many of them offer reasonably priced airport transfers which they may not advertise for some reason.

7. Unless you are going into actual debt, splurge on your money!

Traveling alone is pretty expensive. You won’t be splitting the hotel or transport costs, which are often the hugest chunk while traveling. But if you can afford a nice hotel and a spa appointment, without going unfed, just do it! Also, the more reputed they are, they safer you will be! You don’t want regrets haunting you if something goes wrong only because you were trying to save some lousy bucks!

Suggested read: 24 beauty essentials you must carry while traveling

8. Don’t overschedule

woman traveling_New_Love_Times

Image source: Pixabay, under Creative Commons License

What is an instant trip killer? Overscheduling! Moreover, for those traveling solo, this can leave you wrung out! Since you are working your brains out when it comes to figuring out the flight schedules, searching for the ATMs, waiting out a fit of traveler’s tummy, et. al, bunk the rest on your mood. Going with the flow and having a good time becomes impossible if you overschedule! Don’t let your clock torment you, for God’s sake! Girls, they wanna have fun, don’t they? Your time is yours. Make sure you enjoy it, at your own pace! There’s no rush.

9. Do engage in casual conversations

Traveling alone, especially being a woman, requires you to be courageous. Whenever your heart notifies you of a creep alert, maintain safe distance. However, at other times, speaking with people you encounter can be a great experience. You just have to look for signs that spell out ‘No Danger’. A family living right next to you, your manager, and the owner of the restaurant you frequent, are some of the safer bets. Keeping a good rapport with these people can contrarily help you in case of some unexpected trouble. But whatever you do, don’t give out your contact number or the fact that you’re traveling alone. Give the impression that your co-traveler or partner just wasn’t up to accompanying you on your outing.

10. Avoid going broke!

Having no cash on you is a crisis for any traveler. But things reach an all-time low if you are a woman traveling alone! You cannot ask strangers for help and also, can’t get adventurous and sleep on a bench! Free rides and crash pads are out of the question. To avoid this misfortune, I can share with you a small trick that I followed during my solo travel. Just put a 100 dollar bill under your shoe sole on all your trips! I hope you never have to use it, but it’s better to be safe than sorry, as they say!

11. Ask people to take a pic of you (on your camera, of course!)

woman taking a selfie_New_Love_Times

Image source: Google, copyright-free image under Creative Commons License

We don’t want just selfies, right? Ask local people who’ve come with their families to the landmarks or other tourist group members to do the needful. You can start by offering the courtesy yourself and then ask for a ‘return-the-favor’ click! God only knows how I would stash my travel albums with if my camera only had selfies!

12. Carry a book for dinner!

Supper will be the time that you will feel the loneliest! No one to talk to or share your day’s experience with! Once your food comes, you will be too busy digging in and satisfying your hungry soul and body. But what do you do until then? I usually carry my kindle with me. It saves me the hassle of a space crunch and also the panic of having nothing to read once I am done with whatever book I carried! Also, it keeps the unnecessary attention from stalkers at bay!

13. Stay connected

woman working-New_Love_Times

Image source: Pixabay, under Creative Commons License

Choose someone to stay in touch with! Could be a parent or a bff! Keep them updated on the regs! Pick the person who you know will check in if they don’t hear from you for a while. Send them a photo or a text whenever you are WiFi lucky or Skype with them every night! Share the number of the nearest police station with them. I remember not calling my mom on a night during a trip, and then receiving a local police constable for breakfast the next morning! Moms are crazy!

Suggested read: I traveled alone… and it depressed me

14. Enjoy your own company!

If you are planning your first solo trip, I am sure you are worried about being lonely! Foreign places can surely be cold and ugly when you know no one. Getting unwell there can be a nightmare! But you have nothing to worry about. There will be many places where tourists frequent and you can make friends with plenty of wanderlust-ers like you! And if nothing else works, we told you about hostels and guest houses, didn’t we? :)

These tips are surely going to help you travel alone like a ninja! Don’t look like a target; don’t behave like a target, and please master the death stare… Aren’t these tips a woman’s daily life mantras?! Text-book stuff, eh? :)

Bon voyage!

Featured image source: Google, copyright-free image under Creative Commons License

Article Name
Woman Traveling Alone? You MUST Keep These Tips In Mind
Solo travel is not everyone's cup of tea. But if you're a woman traveling alone, then you MUST keep these vital tips in mind - at ALL times!
Riya Roy

Riya Roy

“If my doctor told me I had only six minutes to live, I wouldn't brood. I'd type a little faster.” This Isaac Asimov line, embraces my love for writing in the finest and most desperate way that it is and should be! I was tormented by the earnestness of the written word not very early in my journey. But once smitten, it has helped me devour life twice over; savoring the moment and indulging in its memories. As a flâneuse, I wander to understand the intricacies of human relationships. Realizing that, they are just different manifestations of the same feeling of love, has been my greatest learning. I seek to share its opulence through the words I type.