When you travel, you’re not always thinking about your safety or any dangers in your vicinity. You’re taking in the sites, enjoying the delicious meal before you, or relaxing at the hotel or resort. Whether we want to admit it or not, there is danger wherever we are which is why we compiled this list of tips aimed at women. Traveling as a female presents a different set of challenges than our counterparts, whether we want to admit that or not.
Make Copies of Your Travel Documents
Is it a pain? Yes. Is it worth it? Also yes. If you lose your travel documents while out and about, you may find it difficult to get back home. Having photocopies or even photos of your documents handy could be a huge time and money saver. Local authorities could stop you for whatever reason and you should have the relevant travel documents ready to show them. Having copies will also expedite a replacement at the local embassy.
Avoid Traveling At Night
First and foremost, traveling as a female means avoiding travel at night if possible. This is something that many people do not consider, but this is the most dangerous time to travel as a female. There have been many cases where female travelers were assaulted or raped in dark parking lots and on the streets during the nighttime hours. You should always make sure that your travel areas are well-lit, and that there are no possible dangers around your location.
Keep yourself covered whenever you are traveling as a female. Observe the local culture and dress appropriately for the area that you are in. Not only could you draw unwanted attention to yourself by wearing a tank top and short shorts, you could also be perceived as offensive, which could create ill will towards you.
Keep Valuables Hidden
While you may really love that engagement ring or beautiful necklace that belonged to your grandma, it is wise to leave the jewelry at home or in the safe at the hotel. Pickpockets and thieves have a knack for picking out tourists and it’s common for tourists to be targeted, especially those traveling as a female.
Along with dressing to cultural norms, you should leave the flashy jewelry out of sight. Your phone is another item that draws attention and can easily be snatched right out of your hand before you even realize what’s going on. If you are stolen from, our advice is to report it to local authorities. DO NOT go after the thief or pickpocket. They likely know the area much better than you do, so it’s better for your safety to count the experience as a loss and learn from it.
Stay In Your Car
If you are traveling as a female by car, it is important to stay inside of your vehicle if you get lost or breakdown. If you do need to pull over for any reason, do so in an area that is well-lit and well-populated. It is also very important to never assume that anyone on the street knows you, especially when it is dark.
Be OK Saying ‘NO’
Most people hate saying ‘no’ to someone, but when traveling as a female, it’s something you’ll have to get comfortable with. When spending time in a group, it’s easy to get sucked into peer pressure and have just one more drink or be asked to take a picture for someone. If your gut is telling you it’s time to leave or someone is bad news, it’s in your best interest to say ‘no’ and walk confidently away. Your safety and well-being is far more important than a stranger’s feelings towards you.
Learn the Language
When visiting an area outside of your first language, you should spend some time learning emergency and common phrases in the native language of the area you’re visiting. Not only does this show a bit of respect to the locals, but it will help you if you find yourself in a situation of potential danger. If there’s an emergency, the last thing you want to deal with is a language barrier. Traveling as a female presents its own challenges as women are (stereotypically) more anxious, so having these emergency phrases in your back pocket will help you think clearly in any situation.
Potential safety phrases to learn would be:
- Thank you
- You’re welcome
- Do you speak [language]
- I need help!
- Please call a doctor
- Please call the police
- Where is…
There are some great apps and websites out there to learn different languages. Some are paid and some are free, but we’d recommend Duolingo – it’s free and can be used on your mobile device or desktop.
Know Your Rights and Local Emergency Numbers
Another important aspect of traveling as a female is that you know your rights. When traveling to a different region or within a different culture than your own, it’s important to educate yourself on what’s acceptable and allowed. By familiarizing yourself with local laws and knowing your rights, you will minimize the risk of legal issues.
Find the local emergency numbers before you arrive to your destination. This can be done by looking them up online or calling ahead to the hotel. Obviously we hope you’ll never need to use an emergency number, but it’s better to be safe than sorry. If you have an Apple device, you should look into TripWhistle, which allows you to dial police, fire, and ambulance numbers anywhere in the world through its app.
Let Someone Know Your Travel Plans
We’re sure you’re a strong, independent woman who is perfectly capable of traveling as a female without worry… but we still recommend sharing your travel plans and itinerary with family and / or friends. This includes checking in with them on a daily basis to remind them of the specific location that you’ll be going to and when you expect you’ll be back.
Another option is to let the hotel receptionist or concierge know what your plans are. Women tend to be more willing to help other women out, so if you’re traveling as a female, it’s wise to find a female hotel receptionist or concierge to share your plans with. They’re familiar with the area and will be able to advise you on what to expect and how to stay safe. The receptionist or concierge will also be able to quickly sound the alarm in the event you don’t return when expected.
In this article, we have covered many tips on how to stay safe when you travel as a female. This article was made to help all who are planning to travel as a female. With these simple tips, you can definitely enjoy your travels and not have any problems when it comes to being safe on the road. Do you have any other tips for traveling as a female? Share them in the comments below so that other readers can benefit from your wisdom!
The article you’re reading now may be directed at traveling as a female, but the tips are useful for all travelers regardless of gender. If you’re interested in more travel safety tips that are related to the general traveler, check out our article 22 Important Travel Safety Tips Everyone Should Know.