Many women travel solo at least once in their lifetime however depending on destination and culture, they can be exposed to more risk. Our tips on how you can stay safe.
1. Before Your Trip
Pack as lightly as possible. As a lone woman, you'll be less vulnerable and more independent if you're not weighed down by heavy luggage.
Rather than residential details, put an office address (without the company name) on your luggage tags.
Before traveling, find out the general dress code for the country. Once you arrive, take note of what local women wear to get an idea of appropriate attire.
2. While Flying
Talk to female flight attendants who are either from or know the country to obtain advice on areas to avoid.
Don't announce your final destination or length of stay to fellow passengers, as the information may be overheard.
3. Accommodation Safety
Try to stay in a hotel or guesthouse on a residential street that has a number of restaurants and late-night stores located on it. This is far safer than staying in a corporate area that will be quiet at night and so less secure.
When checking in, use only your initials and surname; avoid titles such as Ms or Mrs.
Inquire about staff services that escort guests to their room late at night.
If the door to your room is open or unlocked when you return, don't go in alone. Go back to the front desk and ask a member of staff to accompany you to the room.
4. Getting Around
Never let on that you are traveling alone; inform inquisitive strangers that you are expecting your friend or meeting your partner.
If you feel a car is following you when you are walking, do a quick turn and walk in the opposite direction.
If you are travelling alone and don't want any company, there are a few things you can try. If you're on a coach or train, sit on the outside seat, and place your handbag, coat or jacket on the window seat. If you're in a bar or restaurant, put your coat on the back of the seat opposite you; this makes it look as if you have company.
When going out to remember to get the business card of where you are staying before you head out to show to the cab driver/tuk tuk driver to get home again.
If you're confronted with unwelcome attention, remain calm and remove yourself from the situation as soon as possible. You might also wish to approach the nearest police officer or security guard.
In the event of verbal harassment, particularly by male bystanders, it's best to pretend you cannot understand what they're saying. You might also ignore them, or speak in a foreign language they are not likely to understand.
Wear a wedding ring to avoid unwanted attention.
Avoiding eye contact with men is a good way to prevent any problems or hassles; wearing sunnies can help with this and gives you a confidence boost as well.
Act confidently. Know where you are going and what you are doing, and walk with assurance. Confidence can be a major deterrent to criminal activities like petty theft and harassment.