GIRLY GUIDE TO SAVVY SOLO TRAVELING
Ok, ladies! More travel tips for all you solo adventurers. If you’ve already got these in your ‘tool kit’ of street smarts, well done! If not, read on and you will have…,
Give Someone Back Home Your Itinerary + Check-in!
At least one person who’s not traveling with you, should have a general idea of where you’ll be and when. Not just in case if something goes wrong, but if they need to get in touch with you. Schedule a regular check-in with someone back home. Whether it’s via or WhatsApp, Facebook, text or email. It’s a good safety precaution, and then you’ll also have an excuse to brag about your adventures as they happen. (Maybe not with ‘Groucho Meowx’ the freaky cat-bird).
Wear A Fake Wedding Band…But Leave The Bling At Home!
This one annoys ‘feminist me’, but ‘practical me’ gets it. The idea of wearing a fake wedding band is bloody aggravating in this day and age. That said, the U.S. State Department’ advises single women wear a wedding ring while traveling in certain locations. In other destinations, do your research. Leaving flashy jewelry (even costume) at home is a good move. No point in being a (single) target!
Make A Fake Incoming Or Outgoing Call!
In a taxi, or walking home with others around you, make a real (or fake) phone call to say “Yep, I’m almost there. I’ll be there by XXX”. In a cab, the driver will think you’re meeting someone at your destination -even if you’re not. I’ve used this trick alone a couple of times when a man has been walking near me. IOS users can download the KnockToCall App to schedule a fake incoming call. There are a lot of possibilities here!
Snap A Picture Of Your Cab’s License Plate
Do this before you get in – do it quickly from behind so the driver sees you doing it. Or, if you can’t do that safely, snap a pic of the driver’s ID hanging in the car. We’ve taught our four daughters to do this whenever/wherever they are upon getting in a taxi/Uber -they automatically text it straight to us. We get lots of random texts from the girls, but we’ll hopefully never need to retrieve those particular ones.
This one may seem obvious, but lots of us do it – stop where we are, smack bang in the middle of the street and look at our phones for info. This isn’t usually a problem in our home environment, but alone in a foreign culture, the odds are raised. If you get lost/disorientated, don’t stop and look at your phone or map in the middle of the street. Just pop into a cafe/shop and get your bearings in there…
One Earbud Only!
Another obvious one. But, I can’t tell you how many young women I see walking along a street with both headphones/ earbuds in. If you’re listening to music, don’t wear both headphones. That way you can always stay alert. You can also wear headphones with no music on as an excuse for not listening to unwanted conversation and a way to eavesdrop and overhear anything sketchy that might be going on.