Traveling solo, especially in foreign countries, might be intimidating at first, but it doesn’t have to be. If you take these mindful tips when traveling solo to protect yourself and stay on guard you’ll soon find yourself relaxing and growing from the experience.
While traveling with friends and family can be thrilling, there are many benefits to going alone. When you’re on your own you may be faced with challenges, like getting lost. Being on your own means you’ll have to step up and find your solutions, helping you grow and become more independent. Going solo is great for make friends among the locals and fellow travelers. Traveling alone is also perfect for introspection; it encourages you to reflect on your life and your dreams. But unfortunately, traveling solo also has its downsides too.
One of the biggest problems of traveling alone is that it makes you more vulnerable to theft and scams. Falling ill or getting hurt while abroad can be a traumatic experience that gets even more complicated if you’re a solo traveler and you have to administer emergency aid or contact professionals yourself. There are also growing concerns about lone female travels, especially with recent tragic stories like Sarai Sierra, a traveling woman from Staten Island who was found dead in Turkey, and Lindsay Ann Hawker, who was killed while was traveling in Japan.
So, if you are considering traveling alone be sure to consider these Mindful tips when traveling solo:
- Research. Before you go traveling, be sure that you do plenty of research. Know which areas are safe and which areas you should stay away from. Research crime areas and crime statistics. Also, be sure to look up local cultural customs and religious practices to be sure that you do not dress or act inappropriately according to local traditions.
- Be on guard. Stay extra vigilant when you’re traveling alone. Avoid traveling at night if possible. Don’t share too much information with people you do not know. And lastly, trust your instincts, you’ll find that they’ll often lead you in the right direction.
- Be prepared. Always be prepared when solo traveling. Carry around a safety whistle and use door wedges to secure your room at night. Consider wearing a hidden money belt to protect your cash, credit cards, and passport. Keep extra copies of important traveling documents. Also, always make backup plans; you never know when your hotel may lose your reservation or you miss a flight. Having another strategy will keep you from making unwise, impromptu decisions.
- Stay in contact. If you’re traveling alone it’s important that someone knows where you are at all times. Consider sending family members an itinerary of your travels. Also consider registering with your local embassy, especially if you are traveling for more than a few days. It’s extremely helpful in case of emergencies.