You’re particularly vulnerable when travelling alone, so taking extra precautions to make your vacation a safe and enjoyable one is essential. Read on for advice on things to do before and during your next solo trip.
There’s something to be said about travelling alone — you can come and go as you please and do exactly what you want to do. But there are precautions you should take as well in order to stay safe and sound.
Give a copy of your itinerary to someone at home
Before you leave, make sure a friend or someone in your family has a copy of your itinerary. Include your flight and hotel info and any other excursion details. Consider setting up times to check in with them on the phone, so that they know you are well.
Keep your passport and other valuable documents safe
Take advantage of the hotel safe to store your passport, visas and any other important documents. Before you leave on your trip, make photocopies of your passport and both sides of credit cards you are travelling with (only bring the ones you intend to use), so you have ready access to the phone numbers in case your wallet is stolen. This will make it easier to replace your items should they be lost or stolen.
Practice common sense when it comes to valuables
Avoid bringing and wearing flashy jewellry, and leave your designer watch at home. Remember, your valuable items can be stolen not only from you, but from your hotel room, too. Wearing your bling will only draw the attention of pick-pocketers. Also, avoid carrying large amounts of cash on you. Using your credit card to pay for items can help cut down on the cash you carry, but remember they may not be accepted in every shop. When sitting down at a café or stopping to snap a photograph, be aware of your surroundings and your belongings; don’t casually set your shopping bags by your feet, for example.
Try to look at home (as much as possible) and not like a tourist
It can be difficult to not look like a tourist at times — you may need to ask someone for directions, for example. By all means, carry a guidebook and map, but be discreet when checking them. Tuck your camera in your bag and walk with confidence, as though you are familiar with your surroundings.