‘Be careful traveling alone, your cute and its dangerous out there,’ Ellie warned me. I gritted my teeth and reminded myself that this lady was only being caring. The concerns of others has a tendency to put us off. However, more often than not these sensitive souls, normally have not traveled themselves. Just bare in mind that if you stay safe female solo travel is the most enlightening thing you can do.
Here are my top tips for staying safe while alone:
Be minimalist – travel light with no valuables. You wont need much while exploring the world other than an open mind. The lower the monetary value of your kit the less there is to lose and you will not be a target. You can hand wash clothes often. Avoid bringing precious items with you. Of course bring your camera (if it is expensive get insurance for it.)
Be invincible – believe in your self and be strong. At university I had done two years of kick boxing. This gave me a tonne of confidence. While, if I got in a sticky situation I would run away or give my phone over, it was nice knowing that I had the skills to fight back if I had to. Never be defeated, you can do anything. Part of being safe is having the right state of mind. Being invincible will prevent people from messing you around.
Listen to your gut – If you feel unsafe, then just walk away, you know best. If you are with people that feel forced or you are somewhere that scares you – leave. What is the point in feeling uncomfortable? You are alone and can do what ever you want to. So make wise choices.
Pay attention to the right people – locals know best, they will tell you areas to avoid etc. Hostel receptionists will advice you too. Other travelers can talk sense as well. Instead of listening to people back home saying you must not go to the whole of Mexico, listen to locals saying parts are perfectly safe others not so.
Don’t stop for anyone – a trick some hooligans play is laying on the floor pretending to be hurt. They are trying to catch people out. I know it seems contrary to walk away from someone needing help. However, these people are con artists and you do not want to be involved with them. Put yourself first and do not stop for anyone.
It is important to stay safe but do not let others fears and worries dictate your journey. Do what you want to do and be free, enjoy!