Female travelers – advice for women traveling alone. Women who decide to travel alone, especially to more remote and exotic destinations, very often hear that it is a risky idea. In reality, however, something bad can happen to us anywhere – including when returning from shopping at the convenience store around the corner. A lonely journey, regardless of the destination, prompts reflection and a look inside oneself. During such a trip you gain a new perspective, and when forced to deal with difficulties you acquire new skills and become more resourceful. There is no reason to give up on trips – however, proper preparation, caution and informed choice of destination are very important.
Table of Contents:
- Solo travel – do many women travel solo?
- Conscious choice of destination
- Intuition is not worth ignoring!
- How to play safely in unfamiliar places?
- Woman on a solo trip – money, payment cards, passport, valuables
- Safety in transportation – how should a woman handle herself?
- Making contacts during a solo trip
- The safest countries for women traveling alone
Solo travel – do many women travel solo?
Data released by CultureTrip in 2019 showed that the number of women traveling solo had increased by as much as 134% over the previous two years. Although there is no data yet to fully illustrate how this situation has changed after the pandemic, all indications are that covid-19 has failed to curb long-term trends in the long run. Many women are just now starting to plan trips that they had to wait a long time to make because of the restrictions.
Although this is changing very rapidly in the younger generation, in Poland women who decide to go alone often face incomprehension and concerns from their loved ones. While in the United States or Western Europe most women plan vacations alone, in Poland the most popular trips are still family trips, with a partner or husband or in a group of friends. This may be due to the fact that our grandmothers or mothers often had quite limited travel opportunities, so we are the generation that is just “blazing the trail.” Sometimes literally.
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Conscious choice of destination
A solo trip offers great opportunities to fully experience the feelings of freedom and uninhibited adventure. While on a day-to-day basis our time is usually fully filled with routine duties at home and at work, when traveling solo you can really feel like the mistress of your time, wander in a rhythm not imposed by anyone, plan individual activities exactly as you want.
However, a conscious choice of destination is very important in this context. Before you leave, ask yourself what you expect from the trip and try to get as much information about the region as possible beforehand. While your initial inspiration may come from a book you’ve read or a movie on TV, it’s always a good idea to think carefully about your motivations. Will the chosen destination, really allow you to realize your plans? To begin with, the “small steps” method works well. If you haven’t yet traveled alone, it’s a good idea to organize a few days’ trip to Barcelona first, rather than a six-month trip through Asia with trekking in the Himalayas. In this way, you will gradually learn to get out of your “comfort zone.”
Take care to book airline or other transportation tickets in advance and book accommodation. Before you leave, make sure how you will get from the airport or train station to your hotel on the first day. Does it pay to take a cab? Or maybe there’s a subway nearby? Plan the “agenda items” that are most important to you, but also leave yourself room for flexibility.Check out the situation in terms of crime on the ground. When packing, pay special attention to weather conditions. Think through the issues of movement: if you will want to rent a car or move by train, it is worthwhile to check online in advance what the rules are.
Intuition is not worth ignoring!
When preparing for a trip, it’s always a good idea to read guidebooks (especially current ones published by reputable publishers such as Pascal, National Geographic or LonelyPlanet) and follow blogs and video blogs of other travelers. It is also always a good idea to listen to your intuition. If, while wandering around the city, you come across a particularly neglected area, it may actually be safer to turn back than to walk further, especially after dark, when it causes stress and anxiety. The same applies to relationships with people met during the trip. Don’t be afraid to say no if any proposal from strangers makes you uncertain. While it’s a good idea to be open and network, it’s no longer necessarily a good idea to get into a car with newly met men who offer to give you a ride. Courtesy is important, but safety is even more important.
How to play safely in unfamiliar places?
Going on vacation is a good opportunity to have fun. However, you should always be careful not to lose control. There is nothing wrong with having a few drinks in the evening. However, getting drunk to the point of unconsciousness in an unfamiliar place, surrounded by strangers, can have very unpleasant consequences. If you already want to drink more alcohol, for safety reasons it is better to go wild in the hotel bar, even if the prices there are a bit higher than in a little-known pub at the other end of town. Avoid partying alone, in places that seem insecure to you.
Woman on a solo trip – money, payment cards, passport, valuables
When going on a trip, it is always fundamental to properly secure money, credit cards and documents. Above all, never carry them in a conspicuous place: sticking out of the back pocket of your pants, hanging loosely around your neck or sticking out of an open purse. It would be a good idea to spread the money out: for example, you can put some of the funds in your carry-on and some in your main luggage. It’s also not worth carrying everything with you all the time on site. Exchange only as much local currency as you need, and leave the rest of your money in dollars or euros in your room. Hotels usually provide safes where you can also safely store credit cards, documents or jewelry. Adequate lockers are also increasingly appearing in places such as cheap hostels and guesthouses.
In areas where theft is common, it is a good idea to prepare a cheap, cheap purse with change in addition to your wallet. In the event of a robbery, you can give your attacker this purse with a small amount of money, keeping your wallet tucked deeper.
Safety in transportation – how should a woman handle herself?
Special care should be taken when traveling by public transportation. If you have the opportunity, avoid riding buses or subways at night – then there are far fewer people using the transportation and there is less chance that someone will help you if you need it. It may be a good idea to take a seat next to another single woman, couple or family with children, possibly near the driver. It is also worth checking which cab corporation is trustworthy. When leaving a hotel, it’s always a good idea to carry a business card with its address. If you get lost in the city, you will be able to show it to someone asking for directions or hand it to a cab driver. Throughout your trip, it’s a good idea to maintain regular contact with your loved ones in the country, keeping them informed of your plans. Of course, you don’t have to confide everything, but it’s a good idea to let your family know what city you’re actually going to.
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Making contacts during a solo trip
Traveling alone does not mean you have to be alone all the time. On the contrary, you should look for opportunities to meet the locals – this will give you a chance to get to know the real local culture better, not just attractions for tourists. But how do we establish valuable relationships without putting ourselves in danger? It might be a good idea to enroll in a yoga class, take a few classes at a local dance school, or attend a workshop related to your passion. In such places, topics for conversation arise naturally, and once you get to know someone better, you can arrange to have coffee or ask them to show you interesting places in the city. It can also be a good idea to connect with other girls traveling alone – a simple way to do this is through discussions in themed groups on Facebook or other social media.
The safest countries for women traveling alone
- Finland – the country of the aurora borealis and the sun that doesn’t set all night for half the year will be perfect for nature lovers. Here you’ll find a huge number of lakes and Lemmenjoki National Park, which, together with Norway’s adjacent Ovre Anarjokka National Park, forms the largest protected area in Europe. The undoubted attraction of this place is the reindeer herding. Finland was named the safest place for travelers in a report by the World Economic Forum, so you can hit the road without fear.
- Canada – offers a huge variety of landscapes that are often downright breathtaking. Here, centuries-old forests sit side by side with snow-covered mountain peaks, picturesque lakes and rural areas. Canadian cities are bustling, cosmopolitan agglomerations where it’s hard to complain about boredom.
- New Zealand – is a country that attracts with views as if from another world. Tolkien fans will certainly find Middle-earth here (it was in New Zealand that the film adaptation of “The Lord of the Rings” was shot). New Zealand impresses with its contrasting landscapes: you can find paradise beaches and well-kept holiday resorts, active volcanoes and crystal clear lakes.
- Uruguay, a small country neighboring Brazil, has the distinction of having the lowest crime rate in the Americas. Uruguayans are extremely friendly and welcoming. Without a doubt, visit Uruguay’s largest resort, Punta del Este, where you’ll find beautiful beaches, and Colonia del Sacramento, a historic region full of extraordinary charm.
- Switzerland – is a country that even charms with alpine landscapes, monumental mountain peaks and emerald lakes in the valleys. It offers top-notch tourist infrastructure and a high degree of security, so women should not be afraid to come to Switzerland alone.
In recent years, more and more women are finding that it is worthwhile to travel alone. The motives of solo female travelers vary – some need time to themselves to wander at their own pace, being able to finally get away from their daily worries, while others simply don’t want to wait for someone to go on the road with. In any case, Gentlewoman should make sure to stay safe while exploring new places and making inspiring friends. Let adventures be a source of excitement, rather than involving unpleasant consequences due to lack of knowledge and recklessness. By following our tips, you can avoid problems on the road.