Travel Safe, Travel Smart and Travel Solo
I find a smile speaks a thousand words in any language.
Always smile especially if you do not speak the local language.
(1) If you feel like you are being followed, walk into the first – restaurant, cafe, hotel you see and then ask for help. Whatever you do, do not keep walking to your hotel and do not panic.
(2) When you pack your cabin bag, always pack like it’s your weekender, change of clothes for three days / 2 nights, all you need to be comfortable at your destination just in case the airline loses your suitcase. This happens more often then you think, especially on long haul or connecting flights.
(3) Safety comes before Money when you are traveling solo, make this your travel mantra. If you are a budget traveler, use local bus, metro, train or use Taxi / Uber at night. Do not walk alone at night, doesn’t matter how experienced you are at solo traveling. Too many Solo Travelers are getting themselves into dangerous situations because they are tight for money. Ask yourself – What is you’re wellbeing worth, what is your life worth???
(4) Keep your cash and bank cards in different locations, e.g., Travel Wallet with RFID, in case you get robbed. Your handbag is most likely to get snatched, keep only minimal cash in your handbag. I use a bag for items like a drink bottle, face wipe, umbrella, etc.
(5) Don’t walk alone at night, especially in dark alleys and quiet parks. If you do get caught out – where you have to walk a few minutes from the train station or bus stop to your hotel, walk really close behind a couple or group of people as if you are part of that group. I know this sounds creepy but trust me; you do not want to make it stand out that you are walking alone at night.
(6) Wear clothing that is appropriate to the local culture and that you feel comfortable wearing; it also helps avoid extra or unnecessary attention to yourself.
(7) Always have a budget for your travel. As a solo traveler, you do not want to run out of money on the road. ALWAYS keep extra cash for last minute things like taking a Taxi / Uber instead of walking or taking a bus or metro at night.
(8) Be sure to invest extra time and money on your safety. What I mean by this is – if you are flying to a destination for the first time make sure you arrive at your destination in daylight. If you have visited a place many times and you are comfortable with the destination, you know your way around then by all means – arrive any time of day or night.
(9) Don’t post your exact location or check in to social media, Sharing your agenda or location on social media while you are traveling allows potential thieves to keep track of where you are, and that makes you an easy target. My advice; wait for a few days after you have left that location to post and share your experience with your family and friends.
(10) Keep a close eye on the daily transactions of your credit, debit or travel card while you are on the road. If you are using a bank card – I advise that you inform the bank of your travel dates and the places you will be visiting.
(11) Research your destination for the activities, tours and, excursions that you might want to participate in and find the cost involved so you can budget accordingly.
(12) Download google maps on your smartphone. Check the start and end points of your journey, in your hotel, where usually there is free internet.
(13) Do not drink too much alcohol. You do not have anyone to look after you if you get yourself into a state. This also attracts predators.
(14) The best way for any traveler to travel safely is to change the mindset from everything cheap to safety first. When a traveler is trying to save $5.00 on transport, then ends up dragging a suitcase up and down unknown street/s, you put yourself in danger — safety before Money.
(15) Plan things, like exchange rates for example, if you know you will be traveling to Europe or the USA this year, change the currency when the exchange rate is good. Do not wait until the last minute.
(16) When you are picking a location for your accommodation, pick somewhere right in the middle of all the action or the main street of the city, town or village. This way you will be in a safe distance to get out and enjoy a nice dinner and stroll through the city and get the night vibe.
(17) Make sure your mobile phone is always fully charged before you hit the road if you can always carry a backup charger or battery.
(18) Do not travel with anything you can not afford to lose. Expensive jewelry, shoes, etc
(19) Have some understanding of the political and security situation of your destination. Research this on government websites, not social media.
(20) If you are traveling solo, I strongly recommend that you book your accommodation before arrival, especially if you are due to arrive at your destination late at night.
(21) If you are traveling to a country that requires you to have a visa, I recommend you get your visa organized well in advance (give yourself heaps of time). Keep in mind your visa can be rejected. If you leave this to last minute, it can get very costly.
(22) Always have your government 24-hour consular assistances details on you – The Australian Governments, 24-hour consular assistance details are +61 2 6261 3305 from overseas. Ph:1300 555 135 from within Australia.
(23) Alway get Travel Insurance when you are traveling overseas. Be prepared for the worse and wish for the best situation. Flights get delayed or canceled, bad weather, sickness, etc, please do not travel without travel insurance.
Travelquote: “And then there is the most dangerous risk of all — the risk of spending your life not doing what you want on the bet you can buy yourself the freedom to do it later.” – Randy Komisar
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