Female Travel Guest Post Living Abroad

How to Travel Safe as a Woman Living Abroad

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This is a guest post written by Ella from trekbible.  If you would like to write a guest post for Expat and the City, send an email to info@expatandthecityblog.com.

A big concern for women living abroad is safety. Will I be able to travel safe alone? How do I go about convincing my family and friends that I will be okay? Will I make any friends?

Good news is, yes! You will be safe while living and traveling abroad. Following these simple rules will keep you safe.

Travel safe: female in airport ready to take a flight

Look up for the Local Emergency Numbers

Before you depart, search online for local emergency numbers of where you will be staying. Most probably you may never use them, but it’s better to be prepared just in case you require them.

Make local Friends

In this digital era, many networks assist female travelers to connect all over the world. You can inquire about things and customs to do in the area, or better still plan to meet.

Travel Safe: Female traveler groups for women
Some of these connecting sites are:
Girls Love Travel
Pink Pangea
The Travelettes

Give Someone your Itinerary Back at Home

Make sure that a family member, friend or your fellow traveler is aware of your itinerary as well as where you are to at a given time. If there is a change of plans in any way, let someone know. Internet cafes are easy to trace, and affordable SIM cards ($20 USD or lower) are readily available in most countries.

Consider Travel Insurance

Get travel insurance, if your insurance does not cover you while overseas. You don’t have to head back home or pay the cost of medication upfront when injured from abroad.

Travel safe: traveler insurance while abroad

For US citizens register yourself with S.T.E.P. (Smart Traveler Enrollment Program).

Make Copies of your Documents

Make copies of relevant documents such as a passport and other identification. You should as well keep safe electronic copies, in case the paper copy gets lost.

Travel safe: travelers documents

Additionally, take quite a numbers of photos of everything you are traveling with, then upload to cloud server. It helps in proving you own the item just in case a claim with the travel insurance is necessary.

Avoid walking Alone During the Night

Avoid walking alone at night at all cost, due to safety and security reasons. If you find yourself in this situation, slightly walk behind a couple or group. It may sound creepy, but no one wants to stand out walking solo. In most instances, the couple will get the message with a smile.

Travel Safe: woman on the street of San Francisco

Stay in Lit Up and Public Areas

If you feel uncomfortable, switch cars, trains, or walk into a busy area like a restaurant. In case you sense someone is following you, stop and request for help from security personnel or the public.

Be Smart With Your Drinking

Getting too intoxicated can lead you to dangerous situations. Having a drink in moderation is okay, but only a couple drinks if alone. There is an increase in violators everywhere; you don’t want to be a culprit due to extreme intoxication as your inhibitions are lowered. It’s okay to have fun at times, but be cautious.

Never Leave Your Drinks Unattended

Whether in a restaurant or at a party, don’t leave your drink unattended anywhere. You don’t know the motives of people around. Also, never let anyone buy you a drink not in your view.

Don’t use Unregistered Cabs

Be sure to use cabs registered with the city. Avoid the “private cars” and get cabs that are authorized and recommended to work as cabs.

Travel safe: taxi cab

TIP: Keep money in various places. In case some of the money is robbed at least you don’t get stranded.

Lock Up

Lock all your doors and windows; keep everything safely inside and also keep locks on for your belonging always.

Travel safe: close doors and windows

 

Dress Appropriately

It’s easier to blend with other people when you dress like them. It helps in earning the respect of the people you are interacting with, also, respect their customs as well as modesty levels.

Trust Your Gut

If someone or something makes you feel uneasy, say no or walk away – there is no shame in doing that. If your gut is warning you of something that isn’t right, relax and listen to it. This natural sense heightens over some time. Surprisingly, listening to that inner voice can steer you in the right direction.

What tips do you have to travel safe as a solo female traveler? Let me know in the comment section below!


About the Author

Ella, Content Manager for trekbible, is a writer and content specialist with a predilection for learning and exploring new places and cultures around the world.

With family scattered throughout the U.S. and South Korea, she loves to see cross-cultural influences around the world. Her favorite thing to do on her travels is to taste the local cuisine of each destination.

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10 Comments

  • Reply
    Ann
    August 16, 2018 at 10:50 pm

    These are great tips to remember. While I travel alone in the states all the time, I’d be much more hesitant to do it abroad.

  • Reply
    TheGreatAmbini
    August 16, 2018 at 6:11 pm

    This is a comprehensive list, thanks for creating it. I always try to trust my gut and after having my drunk spiked as a teen… Always stay aware! Didn’t know there was a step though, thank for that information.

  • Reply
    Jerry and Fiona
    August 15, 2018 at 5:36 pm

    As as a couple who has hitchhiked through all of Mexico and Central America, we can say street-smarts – common sense, a gut feeling, awareness – should dictate each move you make. Fiona has noticed a definite creepy machismo vibe south of the border toward women, including herself. Sadly, a solo female tourist can be objectified even further in many parts of the world.
    One further tip for solo female travelers who feel they need to exercise extreme caution: Avoid eye contact with a male unless necessary. Even this can be taken the wrong way in certain countries/situations. Wear sunglasses whenever you can in these instances. This is a sad reality, but a compelling topic nonetheless.

  • Reply
    Cindy Baker
    August 15, 2018 at 2:35 pm

    These are all very good tips to keep in mind. I recall walking closely behind a family once and eventually they caught on and included me with them.

  • Reply
    Bernadette Jackson
    August 15, 2018 at 12:50 pm

    All absolutely sensible stuff, but I think that the most important one is to trust your gut. Never be afraid to trust your own judgement. I like the idea of joining the edge of a group; that’s a good idea.

  • Reply
    Kirstin | the tinberry travels (@tinberrytravels)
    August 15, 2018 at 12:15 pm

    Trusting your gut it certainly a big one! If somewhere seems dodgy to wander down then just don’t. When we’re in new places it’s hard to know where the iffy areas are so certainly making local friends helps with this too! All good advice.

  • Reply
    Carmen Edelson
    August 14, 2018 at 1:58 pm

    I agree with every single one of these! Whether I’m traveling alone or not, I always make copies of my documents and give some family at home my itinerary. When I am traveling alone, I always make sure to pick a centrally located hotel, or at least one that’s very close to a metro stop so I’m never walking far at night alone back to my hotel.

  • Reply
    Tom
    August 13, 2018 at 10:14 pm

    I always feel sad when I read advice for women where it advises about dress and watching your drinks. I suppose safety tips are 90% the same for men and women, but it’s sad that women have to take extra precaution such as this. I’ve wanted to write a post on my own travel blog about the whole walking alone at night idea — doing some research on whether assaults and robberies really do happen more at night, in such places as dark alleys. But I think it’s good advice to walk behind another couple.

  • Reply
    Joshua Schweiger
    August 13, 2018 at 1:54 pm

    Great tips! Not only for women but there are certainly some in there that apply to both! Especially making copies of your passport and travel documentation.

  • Reply
    Nic Hilditch-Short
    August 13, 2018 at 6:22 am

    I think it’s sad that in 2018 women still feel we need to act differently and be more wary than male travellers. Your suggestions are great but it does sadden me that they are needed, hopefully in the future women can travel with the same concerns as men.

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