So, you’ve decided to take the leap and book that dream trip! Congrats lady (or guy), you have taken that first scary step. Now you are thinking about all of the things you are going to do, see, and eat.
But wait just a moment. If you are a woman or anyone concerned about your safety, you will need to figure out how to stay safe while in a foreign country. Let’s face it, when you are in a different country from your own ANYTHING could happen and you want to be prepared. Fortunately there are steps you can take to give yourself peace of mind.
#1 Travel Insurance
This has to be one of my number things I do before I leave on any trip out of my own country. You really should research which company is best for you but I personally use World Nomads. Thankfully I’ve never had to use it, but it definitely gives me that peace of mind that if something happened I would be covered.
#2 Photograph/print passport and I.D.
Number two on this list is another MUST DO. I always take a photo and print out photos of my Passport and I.D. I leave the printed copy with a family member. Just in case something happens with your passport you will have this backup. I hope I never have to use this option but I always make sure I have it just in case.
#3 Research your destination
I can’t stress this one enough. If you are a woman or someone who fears for their safety this is another MUST DO. Make sure where you are staying is in a safe area of where you are going. Whether it is a city or out in the country. Also research the safest places in the city and plan accordingly. It pays to pay more for a safe place to stay.
#4 Don’t carry all of your money around with you
This is a pretty good tip. Do you carry all of your money with you when you are at home? Chances are probably not. Split your money up, leave some in a safe place in your room ( most hotel rooms offer safes in their rooms). Only take what you will need for the day.
#5 Blend in
Now, I know for some of us (redheads) blending is is almost impossible. No matter where we go we always stand out. But there are ways that we can make ourselves less noticeable. Research the customs of where you are going. How do they dress? How do they behave? One of the best ways to travel safely is to not stand out. If you stand out more you will be more of a target for pickpockets.
#6 Know your plan
Know where you are going and how to get there when you arrive in a city. If you know the steps you need to take when you arrive to a foreign city you will less likely be overwhelmed. Say you need to take a bus to your next step. Plan ahead so you know which bus to take.
#7 Group Tours
Book a group tour. You won’t be alone and most of the time the tour guide is a local. Make friends with the tour guide and make sure you don’t tell people ALL of your plans.
#8 Make friends with Locals
I think this is a pretty good idea. Talk to locals and people who run the hotel you are staying in. Ask them of any areas you should stay away from. Ask them the best places to eat, shop, the best sites. This I know from personal experience, is one of the most helpful things you can do.
#9 Don’t tell people where you are staying
Other than your family and friends no one needs to know where you are staying. This is very important. It makes you more of a target for human traffickers.
#10 Don’t take an unlicensed Cab
This one should be pretty common sense. Don’t get into unlicensed cabs. I prefer to use public transportation that way you are surrounded by more people and less of a chance of someone trying to take advantage of you.
#11 Leave the Jewelry at home
You don’t need to wear diamonds and flashy jewelry while you are traveling. Some women like to wear a wedding band even if they aren’t married and this is another precaution you can take. But there is no need to bring any expensive jewelry.
#12 Do not accept food/drink from strangers
Do not accept food or drink from strangers! This is an easy to be drugged and who knows what else could happen. If you are out having a drink, make sure to keep an eye on your drink at ALL times. Don’t put your drink down, go dance, then come back and drink it.
#13 Answer your hotel door
There is no reason for anyone to be at your hotel door unless you called them there. If someone comes to your hotel door and claim they need to fix something be sure to call the front counter and verify this.
#14 Don’t trust all women
There are many women who work for human traffickers. Do not assume all women are safe. Do not tell them where you are staying or your plans.
#15 Check in with Family/Friends/Social Media
It’s best to let your family or friends know where you are. Check in on Social Media each day to let people know you are are okay. It’s important to live little breadcrumbs just in case something does happen.
There are so many ways to stay safe while traveling. These are just a few ways. Definitely be safe and most importantly TRUST YOUR GUT! It is rarely wrong. Also, don’t let fear decide your fate. Don’t let it keep you home or stuck in the hotel room once you do arrive. Just keep your wits about you and use some common sense and you will be just fine. If something does happen contact your family/friends and the local embassy for your country.
If you would like to know which countries are currently the safest to travel to you can read my 10 Safest Countries In The World article!
Note: Any links in this article are simply for your research purposes. I am not being paid to promote any business.