Travelling should be a wonderful experience. However, as any experienced traveller will tell you, things can quickly get stressful if you don’t prepare yourself properly. Women, especially those who travel alone, face a wider range of dangers than men do and are more likely to be targeted for certain types of crime.
The good news is that staying safe doesn’t have to be difficult. As long as you prepare yourself properly and follow some simple advice, you can travel freely and with confidence.
Research, Research, Research
The most important thing that you can do to ensure your safety when travelling is to make sure that you have carefully researched your destination. The more you know before you arrive, the less likely you are to run into unexpected issues when you actually get there. If you are heading somewhere with a very different culture to the one you are used to, it is important that you give yourself at least a rough idea of what to expect.
Make Sure Someone Knows Where You Are
Sadly, being a woman makes you a more likely target for certain types of crime. A potential mugger, for example, will view a woman as an easier target than a man – a sometimes fatal assumption for the woman.
Whenever you are planning on going out, make sure that someone knows where you are, even if they aren’t in the same country as you. You should try and check in with friends and family as regularly as you can.
Don’t Bring Back Any Packages Given to You by Other People
The importation of controlled drugs is to risk a hefty prison sentence or even death if you’re in the wrong part of the world. Naturally, the vast majority of people reading this will have no intention of ever trying to smuggle drugs. However, you might be surprised to find out that in some cases, people don’t know they’re being used as mules.
Smugglers have turned to a number of underhanded tactics in order to manipulate vulnerable people into carrying packages for them. In many countries, women are seen as easy targets. A large number of these scams involve convincing women that the smuggler wants to send something to another country for their child.
Never agree to courier packages for other people – even if it’s someone you trust.
Only Pack What You Need
This applies to both packing your bags for leaving on holiday and for managing your possessions while you are there. There is no sense bringing things with you that you don’t need, especially if losing those things would be problematic for you.
While pretending they’re on the phone makes some women feel safer in suspicious places, you don’t want to advertise it to potential muggers. Similarly, carrying some spare cash is another good security measure, but you shouldn’t carry too much or make it obvious that you have it on you.
Be careful who you trust when you are travelling, and if you are ever uncertain or getting a bad vibe from someone, get away from them as quickly as you can. Keep your wits about you, and don’t advertise your valuables to potential thieves.