Common Solo Travel Mistakes
We all make mistakes and when it comes to solo travel, those mistakes often have to do with our safety. As women who travel solo, it is extremely important that we take the necessary precautions to ensure our safety and avoid these common solo travel mistakes.
Stop posting on social media
I am extremely guilty of this. I get so excited to share my adventures to inspire others, that I forget I probably shouldn’t do it in real time. Now, this isn’t to make you paranoid but sadly, there are some creepos out there who may take notice of where and when you are in a specific place.
If you are going to opt into posting while traveling then be sure to leave any and all specifics out. Our suggestion though is to wait until after your travels to share all the exciting experiences you had.
Looking like a tourist
What do I mean by this? Some of us walk around new locations with a huge neon sign on our forehead that says “I am not from here”. The best way to avoid being a target of tourist scams or worse, is to show your confidence when walking around. Now, that is not to say you should be scared to ask for help or directions if you find yourself lost/confused about where you are heading but, try to avoid looking as such or you could find yourself being a victim of someone with bad intentions.
Be intentional and cautious on who you approach for help. Families tend to be the safest to get assistance from.
Telling strangers you are traveling solo
Just don’t do it! It’s amazing to meet new people and as I have shared before, I have met some of my closest friends while traveling but, you should not – in any way – share that you are alone with people you are just meeting. Let folks just assume you are just momentarily alone vs. fully. It’s obvious that by sharing this information you are opening yourself up to unwanted attention or worse.
This also goes with sharing any personal information. Before accepting Facebook requests or sharing plans with your new “friends”, wait until you are already on to your next destination or home from your trip. It’s better to be safe, than sorry.
Drinking too much
I don’t know about you but, sometimes when I find myself in social situations, to help me loosen up and mingle – I tend to enjoy a libation or two. Now, I am not one to drink a lot so, thankfully this is not something I have struggled with. However, I have often found myself becoming the “mom” of the group when I would venture out with suitemates from the hostel I was staying at because they were getting very drunk. I am a girls-girl and whether I have known you 5 minutes or 10 years, if I am aware and able, I will not let a women get themselves into an unsafe situation. Even if that means cutting my night short to make sure they get back to their accommodation safely.
However, not everyone is like me and you may not have that support when traveling solo. So, to stay safe and not risk getting hurt or taken advantage of, keep the drinking to a minimum and if you take your eyes away from your drink for even a second – toss it and get a new one.
Assuming men are your only threat
More and more, women and children are being used to lure victims into the hands of their attacker. It is scary and sad to say but, men are not your only threat when traveling. Depending on where you are traveling to, there may be a greater risk for kidnapping, theft, sexual assault, or worse. It is good to be observant, not scared, about your surroundings to avoiding threatening your safety.
Not browsing the web without a VPN
Safe VPN is an amazing resource for when you are traveling and using public wi-fi. Especially if you are going to be doing anything that uses personal information like your address, credit cards, etc. Try to plan ahead and download Safe VPN to make sure you are prepared.
Not having an emergency plan or safety stash of cash
What if you find yourself staying at a hotel that doesn’t look at all like their website photos, it’s in an unsafe area, and the staff is creeping you out? Would you have the plan and/or funds ready to go somewhere else? Most of us would answer “no” to this question when asked. However, with a little research, planning, and budgeting, you can get prepared to solve for any unexpected situation you may find yourself in.
Do you have any common mistakes to share with our readers? I am sure there are loads more but, these are the top mistakes I have personally experienced.