Traveling solo is a highly rewarding experience. You are forced out of your comfort zone and meet all kinds of weird and wonderful characters from all around the world. However, when travelling solo it is important to be that little bit extra aware of your possessions and personal safety. There’s nothing worse than being stranded in an anonymous town in the middle of nowhere having been robbed of your backpack from the bottom of the bus, believe us.
Therefore, we here at Travel Insurance Reviews thought we would share some insight on how to travel solo safely and without any dangerous or frustrating interruptions.
- Research your destination: Travel has become far more accessible in recent years with new hotels/hostels constantly popping up and the likes of Airbnb and HomeAway allowing a steady stream of properties to be advertised, it is important to know exactly where you are heading. This is especially so with the likes of Airbnb and HomeAway, where people advertising their ‘cosy room 10 minutes from the beach’ are actually just trying to get some money for their dirty den in a dodgy part of town.
It’s a sad reality that people aren’t necessarily even safer in numbers, so if you are a solo traveller walking along the dark side of the street in a highly questionable part of town at night en route to your hostel, well, needless to say you might find yourself being robbed for your North Face backpack by a guy who promised to help you find the damn place. Simply research the area you are staying in with sites like TripAdvisor, Hostelworld and Booking.com, and here you will find out if the area you are looking to stay in is safe or if you might fall victim to a dodgy Airbnb listing and that man who said he would help you find the place.
- Blend in with the crowd: Petty criminals like thieves and pickpockets notice a traveller who is going out of there way to stand out amongst the crowd. Flashy jewellery and a cocky attitude towards locals will get you nowhere further than a mugging halfway down the secluded alleyway you had the audacity to walk down in the first place. Dress down, dress like a local, be courteous and respectful and this, in turn, will go a long way to minimising your risk of getting into trouble.
- Don’t get too solo wasted: Having quiet drinks by one’s lonesome, whilst some people may say is a step toward alcoholism, can be a pleasant and relaxing way to end a day exploring a destination. However, if you order one too many Pisco sours (which might actually be a sign of oncoming alcoholism) before deciding to stumble back to your accommodation, you could be in some strife. Anyone who has been in such a situation will testify to it being hard to defend yourself when you are seven beers and five rum and cokes deep. Enjoy a beverage, it’s fun! But try not to get so outrageously inebriated that you don’t trip over your own feet if the time comes when you have to avoid a thief who has potentially been monitoring your level of intoxication.
- Have decent insurance: This is imperative for solo travel, as you don’t want to get caught out without a solid insurance plan whilst traveling. This is where you can get really screwed over. Ensure you do your research, compare plans and make it so your plan is one that is suitable for solo travel.
Of course, relax!: You don’t have to be terrified, or even too worried. Criminals sense it more when you seem on edge, without confidence. It’s some animalistic, king of the jungle type business. Relax, have fun, have confidence in yourself, your ability to read situations/your ability to handle situations and you will be to have a fun and trouble-free solo voyage.