10+ Safety Tips All Women Should Know Inside Out

By molly atherton 7 months ago

In a world of boundless exploration and adventure, solo travel for women has become an empowering journey of self-discovery. However, amid the excitement of new horizons lies the need for heightened awareness and safety measures. In our guide, "10+ Safety Tips All Women Should Know Inside Out," we delve into strategies to navigate the landscapes of solo travel with confidence and security. Join us on a journey to unlock the key safety insights that will empower women to embrace the world.

1. Say You Live Close to Walmart

Just because someone shares their details with you doesn't mean you have to reciprocate. If you don't want to reveal your address, say you live near a well-known place like Walmart, a hotel chain, or a gas station. Choose any location that works for you.Original content sourced from Femanin.com

Image Source: Chicago Sun-Times

Or, for example, instead of saying, "I live at 123 Main Street," you could say, "I'm in the vicinity of the Walmart on Oak Street" or "I'm close to the Hilton downtown." This way, you're providing a general sense of your location without divulging precise details.

2. Use The Borrowed Car Strategy

If someone shows interest in your car, they may be fishing for personal information. When asked if it's your car, say it's a rental or borrowed. This way, they won't gather your license plate, car color, or type, and hopefully, they will leave you alone so that you can get away safely.

Image Source: Reddit

Also, if you discover a flat tire on your car, step away from the vehicle and return to a safe location, such as the restaurant or store you were previously at. Call for assistance and politely decline any offers of help, regardless of the person's gender, as they could potentially be a predator.

3. Safety in Numbers: Be Surrounded by Friends

Feeling vulnerable alone? Create a virtual entourage. If you're alone in public, pretend you're waiting for friends. Even when taking a taxi, mention that you're meeting up with friends or family. Let people know that others are expecting and waiting for you.

Image Source: Reddit

Leveraging technology is another facet of this strategy. Use your phone to simulate ongoing communication, creating the appearance of being engaged in coordinating plans. Additionally, consider employing safety apps that enable you to share your real-time location with trusted contacts.

4. Hide Your Work or School ID When in Public

Identification cards carry a wealth of personal information. To safeguard your privacy, you should refrain from openly displaying them while using public transportation. Opt to either completely remove them from view or securely tuck them away beneath your sweater if any sensitive details are visible.

Image Source: Reddit

To add an extra layer of protection, consider completely removing your ID from view when not required for immediate use. Store it securely in a designated compartment of your bag or wallet, minimizing the chances of someone surreptitiously obtaining your personal information.

5. Car Alarm for Personal Security

Picture this: you find yourself in a dimly lit parking lot and notice someone lurking suspiciously near your car. Here's a handy personal safety tip: use your car alarm as a proactive measure. With your keys in hand, manually activate the alarm. The sudden blaring noise will startle the individual and draw attention, effectively deterring any potential harm.

Image Source: Reddit

Secondly, the blaring alarm attracts the attention of others nearby, turning the spotlight onto the potential threat. Whether it's fellow pedestrians, security personnel, or even other drivers, the noise serves as a signal that something is amiss so that it can alert help!

6. Elevator Escape Plan: Stand by the Control Panel

Position yourself between the elevator control panel and the door. This way, you have easy access to exit whenever you feel uncomfortable. If someone unwanted enters, press the button for the next floor and leave to avoid any uncomfortable situations.

Image Source: Reddit

Remaining aware of your surroundings is crucial. Pay attention to those entering the elevator, trust your instincts, and take proactive steps to ensure your well-being. Additionally, familiarize yourself with the emergency features of the elevator, such as the alarm button!

7. Hotel Safety: Hang Bells on the Door

In hotels or dormitories, hang a safety alarm or attach bells to your door handle from the inside. Alternatively, an ironing board can serve as an alert mechanism. If someone attempts to open the door, the alarm will ring or the ironing board will fall, signaling potential danger.

Image Source: Reddit

These ingenious solutions, along with other precautions such as using portable door stoppers and being mindful of peepholes, contribute to creating a safer environment in temporary living spaces. Communication with hotel or dormitory staff about specific safety concerns is also important.

8. Use a Man's Name for Deliveries

When placing a food delivery order or anticipating the arrival of unknown individuals, consider using a man's name. This clever tactic creates the illusion that either a man resides at your location or that you are not alone, prioritizing your personal safety by keeping sensitive details concealed.

Image Source: Reddit

It adds an extra layer of anonymity, dissuading potential intruders or individuals with ill intentions from discerning specific information about your living situation. This simple yet effective measure allows you to navigate such scenarios with heightened awareness and discretion, contributing to a more secure and private experience.

9. Keep Your Movements Private

If someone appears overly curious about your daily routine or work schedule, ensure you don't share any personal information. Tell them limited details or create ambiguity by stating that your schedule is constantly changing or that you frequently change offices.

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By withholding specific information about where and when you can be found, you make it more challenging for someone to track your movements. This strategic approach not only keeps you from revealing unnecessary information but also contributes to a heightened sense of awareness and protection in your interactions.

10. Pretend You Don't Understand

When faced with street harassment, one effective strategy is acting as if you don't understand the language. You create a barrier that discourages engagement by feigning confusion and responding with phrases in a different language. Simply shrug, walk away, and avoid further interaction.

Image Source: The Mirror

This approach not only helps you avoid escalating the situation but also denies individuals seeking to bother you the satisfaction of a reaction. It empowers you to take control of the encounter, maintaining your personal space and promoting a sense of self-assurance.

11. Use the Keys for Self-Defense

Always be prepared to protect yourself. Grasp your keys tightly between your fingers, ready to use them as a potential weapon if needed. This small precaution can provide a sense of security in uncertain situations. Also, avoid fumbling with your keys at the door like a clumsy sitcom character.

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Have the right key ready before you reach your destination to avoid drawing unwanted attention. This not only streamlines the entry process but also minimizes the time spent in vulnerable positions, and therefore enhancing your overall safety and wellbeing.

12. Going the Extra Block: Strategic Detour

If you notice a persistent follower on your trail, take a detour and walk past your intended destination. Give them the illusion that you're oblivious to their presence while you find a safe haven or seek help if needed. Also, keep an eye out for potential safe spots.

Image Source: Reddit

Locate busy areas, shops, or establishments where you can seek refuge and find assistance if the situation escalates. If the follower persists, don't hesitate to seek help from others nearby or enter a public space like a cafe, where you can safely assess the situation.

13. Always Take the Illuminated Path

Even if it means taking a slightly longer route, prioritize well-lit areas when walking at night. Brightly lit surroundings provide better visibility and reduce the chances of becoming an easy target for potential threats. Safety should never be compromised for convenience.

Image Source: Daily Hive

By consciously choosing well-lit routes, you take a proactive stance in safeguarding yourself against potential dangers. Additionally, consider the psychological impact: a brightly illuminated environment can boost your confidence and sense of security, allowing you to feel safer.

14. Never Use Unmarked Taxis

No matter how tempting a cheaper and seemingly convenient ride may be, never, ever use an unmarked taxi. These unmonitored and unregulated vehicles expose you to potentially horrendous situations. Prioritize your safety by only opting for marked taxis that offer proper monitoring and protection.

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Marked taxis are not only easily identifiable but also adhere to established standards, ensuring that both the vehicle and the driver meet safety and security requirements. This level of oversight significantly reduces the likelihood of encountering dangerous situations during your journey.

15. Memorize a Destination's Emergency Numbers

When you're getting ready for a trip, before you embark on the journey, take a moment to do a quick Google search and save the emergency phone numbers for your destination. This simple step could be a lifesaver, especially in urgent situations that require swift action. Stay prepared and informed.

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Whether you encounter a medical emergency, need police assistance, or require other urgent help, having these numbers readily available on your phone ensures a prompt response and minimizes the time it takes to seek assistance. It's a small step that reflects a responsible approach to travel.

16. Don't Use Your Phone When Walking Alone

While walking alone, avoid using your phone. Many believe that being on the phone provides safety, assuming the person on the other end can call for help. However, chatting can distract you from your surroundings. Instead, hold your phone ready to make an emergency call and stay vigilant.

Image Source: YouTube

While technology can be a valuable tool for personal safety, using it judiciously is key. By adopting this practice, you strike a balance between having the means to call for assistance and staying alert to your environment, contributing to a safer experience when walking alone.

17. Gear Up Your Car

Be prepared for unforeseen situations by packing emergency gear in your car's trunk, including items such as a portable battery charger, jumper cables, water bottles, blankets, flares, reflective vests, a first aid kit, bungee cords, spare clothes, rain poncho, spotlight, fix-a-flat, miniature shovel, umbrella, and more.

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Remember, it's better to have these items and not need them than to face an emergency without the necessary tools. Regularly check and update your emergency kit to ensure all items are in good condition. This proactive approach to car preparedness promotes safety.

18. Steer Clear of First-Floor Hotel Rooms

When selecting a hotel room, avoid the first floor whenever possible. The first floor is generally the easiest to breach. Ensure your safety by engaging the automatic door lock, swinging metal lock, and any interior deadbolt locks. Consider leaving your TV or radio on when you're out for the day to create noise behind the door.

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Furthermore, utilize the "Do Not Disturb" sign on your doorknob as an additional layer of security. By signaling that you prefer privacy and turning down the daily housekeeping service, you minimize the frequency of people entering your room and reduce the chances of unwanted encounters.

19. Be Loud

In a dangerous situation, make yourself heard. If someone tries to grab you, vigorously move your arm up and down while shouting, "Stop!" Don't hesitate to ask someone in a parking lot to keep their distance or yell for help if needed. Speak loudly to attract the attention of others nearby

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Don't let fear of embarrassment prevent you from expressing your wishes to avoid harm. A few minutes of potential embarrassment are worth it to ensure your safety. It's essential to prioritize your safety over concerns of amy potential embarrassment.

20. Outsmart Pickpockets: Carry a Fake Wallet With You

When traveling, it's wise to steer clear of densely crowded areas that tend to attract pickpockets. Enhance your security by carrying a decoy wallet containing only minimal cash. Meanwhile, ensure that your real wallet, cash, and identification remain discreetly concealed, making it difficult for anyone to discreetly pilfer from your pocket.

Image Source: Reddit

This strategic move serves as a distraction, giving the illusion that you hold your valuables there, potentially deterring pickpockets. Simultaneously, ensure that your real wallet, along with cash and identification, remains discreetly concealed so that they cannot see it,

21. Always Shred Your Junk Mail to Protect Your Identity

Your trash can reveal a surprising amount about you to identity thieves. Safeguard your personal information and protect against potential fraud by diligently shredding junk mail, prescriptions, debit and credit card documents, bills, and investment statements before securely disposing of them.

Image Source: Reddit

Investing in a reliable shredder allows you to effectively destroy documents containing personal information, rendering them unreadable and significantly reducing the risk of unauthorized access. By taking the time to shred such documents, you create a formidable barrier against identity theft.

22. Turn Off Geolocation on Social Media At All Times

Disable location tagging on your social media apps to prevent others from knowing your exact whereabouts. Use descriptive captions without revealing specific details. It's safer to share the region rather than an exact street. Maintain control over your privacy and security.

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By being mindful of your digital footprint, you reduce the risk of inadvertently sharing sensitive information. These practices empower you to enjoy the benefits of social media while prioritizing your privacy and security in an increasingly interconnected world.

23. No Check-Ins Until You Leave

Instead of checking in on social media when you arrive somewhere, do it as you leave. This prevents digital stalking and keeps your movements and home occupancy private. Similarly, refrain from posting vacation updates, especially if your accounts are public, as it signals that your home is unattended.

Image Source: The Hard Times

Because also, broadcasting your absence can inadvertently signal that your home is unattended, potentially attracting unwanted attention. By refraining from sharing real-time vacation updates, you reduce the chances of compromising the security of your residence.

24. Watch the Bartender As They Pour Your Drinks

Stay vigilant when your drink is being prepared. For added safety, opt for wine instead of mixed cocktails, as they take longer to make. Don't let distractions cause you to miss any suspicious activity by the bartender or someone else attempting to tamper with your drink.

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Keep a close eye on your drink from the moment it's being prepared until it reaches your hands. If there are any concerns about the preparation process or if you lose sight of your drink, consider ordering a new one and opt for seating arrangements that allow you to have a clear view of the drink being made.

25. Walk Confidently and Maintain Eye Contact When Necessary

Project confidence and deter potential threats by walking confidently and making eye contact with people you encounter. Men who seek to cause harm often target those who appear vulnerable or unlikely to fight back. By displaying assertiveness and locking eyes with individuals approaching you on quiet streets, you increase the likelihood of them leaving you undisturbed.

Image Source: US Weekly

This can make you appear less like an easy target, as individuals seeking to cause harm often target those they perceive as vulnerable or unaware. By displaying assertiveness through your posture, stride, and eye contact, you signal that you are aware, capable, and prepared to handle any situation.

26. Stay Alert and Attentive

Attackers thrive on easy prey, those lost in their earphone world or absorbed in texting. Don't be their next target. Pay attention to your surroundings, and be aware of what's happening around you. Criminals seek vulnerable victims, so keep your head up, eyes forward, and ditch those headphones.

Image Source: Manhattan Times

Your ears are valuable allies in staying alert to potential dangers. By staying engaged with your surroundings and adopting a proactive approach to personal safety, you reduce the likelihood of falling prey to criminal opportunists. While modern technology has its conveniences, it's crucial to  mitigate potential risks.

27. Mention You're Meeting Someone

A simple mention of meeting someone can send troublemakers running for cover. Casually drop phrases like, "Oh, I'm meeting my friend there," or "My boyfriend expects a call from me." Let them know you're not alone, raising a red flag and making them think twice about approaching you.

Image Source: Metro UK

It creates the impression that your social network is actively involved in your life, making it less appealing for someone seeking an easy target. This subtle but powerful communication can make individuals with malicious intent think twice about engaging with you.

28. Keep Your Bag Close

Don't underestimate the risks of leaving your bag unattended. Losing cash and credit cards is just the tip of the iceberg. Your personal safety is compromised when your bag is snatched, as the thief now has your home address. It extends the danger beyond the initial incident, potentially putting you at risk later.

Image Source: WWD

Stay vigilant, whether at a soccer game or elsewhere, and guard your belongings. Minimize the contents of your bag to essential items. Not only does this make your bag less attractive to thieves, but it also reduces the potential loss if your bag is stolen.

29. Always Immediately Secure The Door Behind You

Adopt a golden rule: Lock your car door immediately upon entering (you can even use your remote to do so). Don't wait when entering a building; lock the door behind you immediately. Secure the lock before tending to your belongings, even when entering a bathroom stall.

Image Source: Reddit

Criminals often strike when you feel safe and let your guard down. Stay one step ahead by keeping those doors locked tight. Even in seemingly secure spaces like public restrooms, adopt the habit of locking the door to the stall right away. Criminals may exploit the perception of privacy in such areas!

30. ALWAYS Trust Your Gut

Listen to your instincts—they're rarely wrong. If a situation feels off, trust your intuition and make your exit. If darkness gives you an uneasy feeling, seek out well-lit areas. Excuse yourself from the conversation when someone raises a concern or cross the street to distance yourself from them.

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It's not paranoia; it's your inner voice signaling you to flee from potential danger. Trust it. Your instincts are your silent guardians, finely tuned over years of evolution to detect subtle cues that may elude conscious awareness. When that inner voice starts to murmur, pay attention; it's rarely wrong.

31. Safety tips for solo female travelers: research hot spots for solo travelers first

It's a good idea to do research before you book a new place whether you're going alone or not, but for a solo female traveler you should definitely look into countries or places which are the safest in the world, if you're not fussy about where you visit.
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Double check how the locals usually treat solo female travelers, and read blogs from people's experiences! our journey starts long before you board a plane – it begins with arming yourself with knowledge. So, take the time to research, absorb the wisdom shared by other intrepid souls!

32. Trust your gut about new places or streets

Your gut is your strongest tool, and a solo female traveler having her wits about her should definitely trust her gut when it comes to travel plans. If you make a turn down a new street and it just doesn't feel right, always turn around and find a different route!
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If a turn down a particular street sends a subtle shiver down your spine, don't ignore it; embrace it as a powerful signal. Always be ready to pivot, turn around, and choose a different route. Your gut is a silent guide, finely attuned to the nuances of safety.

33. Carry a safety whistle

A safety whistle can help you to feel more confident and comfortable when you're out and about, as well as being a great emergency tool if you need to use it. It's only small so it'll easily fit in any carry-on bag, suitcase or handbag when you're walking around. Or even in your pocket or on a necklace!
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Beyond its unobtrusive nature, a safety whistle serves as a versatile tool. In addition to instilling a sense of confidence during your journeys, it transforms into an emergency beacon if the need arises. The shrill sound can cut through the noise, alerting those nearby.

34. Take a rubber doorstop

A rubber doorstop is another thing you can easily pack that won't take up much room in your suitcase, and something that can make you feel a lot more at ease in new accommodations. You can put a rubber doorstop at the back of an interior door, or a door that leads onto the balcony, to wedge it shut as an extra security on top of locking it properly!
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n the realm of solo travel, where adaptability is key, the rubber doorstop becomes a silent guardian, a subtle yet effective tool that empowers you to take proactive steps in ensuring your security. So, add this unassuming item to your packing checklist.

35. Pay more for safer accommodation

It's annoying that women have to think about this, especially when you're on a budget, but it's definitely worth investing more in accommodation for added safety features. Instead of going for the dirt cheapest hostel in a questionable area, you might want to choose a hotel so that you have staff to rely on, security and 24/7 helpdesks.
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While it may mean adjusting your budget priorities, the investment in safer accommodations is an investment in peace of mind. In the tapestry of travel experiences, the quality of your stay can significantly impact the overall enjoyment and security of your journey.

36. Always watch your drink

No matter whether you're sipping a bottle of water on a public bench and put it next to you for a moment, or a cocktail in a bar, always watch whatever you're drinking, any hour of the day. Whether it's alcohol or not, it doesn't matter, as there's always the risk of someone targeting your drink.
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Even momentary lapses of attention can provide an opportunity for potential harm. Whether it's protecting against the risk of intentional tampering or accidental contamination, your commitment to safeguarding your drink underscores a commitment to your personal safety.

37. Research how women dress where you're going

It's never, ever 'what they were wearing', and you shouldn't have to think about how you dress, but unfortunately it's still a reality when it comes to safety. This is more about safety by not drawing attention to yourself in a new place, and researching how women usually dress - especially countries that might have more conservative rules - will help you stay safe.
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It's disheartening that safety considerations sometimes extend to how one dresses, and the unfortunate reality is that appearances can attract unwanted attention. While it's crucial to emphasize that the responsibility for safety lies solely with potential perpetrators, adapting to local norms can be a proactive measure.

38. Don't make eye contact

You should show confidence and not hide your face, but looking ahead at the path, landmarks or where you're headed is much better than making eye contact with someone who's looking at you or a stranger watching you. Sometimes you have to look at people, of course, but ignore anyone trying to catch your eye.
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While maintaining a forward and purposeful stride, focusing on the path, landmarks, or your destination proves to be a savvy strategy. This not only projects an air of assurance but also redirects attention away from potential onlookers and unwanted attention.

39. Don't tell anyone where you're staying

Don't be tempted to tell a stranger, even if you're pleasantly chatting, where you're staying, and especially if they already know you're alone. It's not advised even if it's a big well-known hotel, but it's less advised if it's a hostel or something more public, like a camper van at an outdoor site.
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While engaging with others is a wonderful aspect of travel, safeguarding information about your temporary residence is an essential measure in ensuring your security. Solo travelers are definitely best served by adopting a principle of discretion in their interactions.

40. Don't be quick to trust people!

We really wish we could trust people who seem nice and friendly without having to worry about it, but alas, it's not the case. There might be many local people - or other travelers - happy to help you on your journey, but don't take everyone at face value, even if they seem nice.
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You can have a nice conversation while still being guarded about personal information! Trust is earned over time, and it's okay, and actually recommended, to be selective about what you share, especially when you're navigating new environments alone.

41. Get registered with your local embassy

This is a great idea for protecting yourself in a new country, and especially in the event of a disaster or an emergency so that your local embassy knows you're in that country at that point in time. Get their details beforehand and register with them when you arrive in your new place.
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This simple and quick registration ensures that your government is aware of your presence in the country, facilitating communication and assistance if needed. It becomes a lifeline that connects you to resources, guidance, and support during challenging times.

42. Do as much as you can during daylight hours

Try to plan your vacation or trip to get in most of your activities during the day, so that you don't have to go out as much as night. We know if can be frustrating if you're a night owl and you like exploring in the evening, but at the very least try to do minimal things at night.
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This will help to keep you safe by going out at peak hours with other people out and about. The hustle and bustle of the daytime provide a natural layer of security, reducing the likelihood of encountering isolated or dimly lit spaces that may pose potential risks.

43. If you do need to walk at night, try not to do it alone

We know that going out at night can't be avoided completely though, especially when it comes to food and drink. The best thing to do is try not to do it alone - we know that might sound contradictory when solo traveling, but it's more about surrounding yourself with people.
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Hit a busy restaurant in the center of town instead of a random road-side diner out in the sticks, for instance. This strategic choice allows you to enjoy the charm of evening outings while minimizing potential risks associated with being alone in less frequented places.

44. Learn some emergency phrases

We all know the main emergency phrases like shouting 'help' or 'fire', but if you're traveling to a new country, get to know the phrases they use in their own language so you have them to hand. It's also more likely someone will respond to 'fire' rather than 'help'.
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In the solo traveler's toolkit, language becomes a powerful asset, not just for cultural immersion but also for ensuring effective communication in times of need. So, before embarking on your journey, take a moment to learn and practice key emergency phrases!

45. Get to know hotel or accommodation staff

It's a good idea to go out of your way to chat to your hotel or accommodation staff, so they know a little about your plans and that you're there alone. Let them know where you're going at reception when you're heading out and what time you plan to back.
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That way they can flag it up if you don't return to the hotel after you said you will! The staff becomes a part of your travel support system, contributing to an environment where solo travelers can explore with a heightened sense of confidence and security.

46. Let someone back home know where you're going

Even though you're traveling solo, it's still important to keep checking in with friends and family back home so they know you're okay, what you're doing, and where you're planning to go next. It's a good idea to give them a copy of your itinerary for the whole trip, and details like flight information.
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Regular check-ins become a way to signal your well-being and offer peace of mind to those who care about your safety. Whether it's a quick text, a call, or sharing updates through messaging apps, these connections serve as a virtual support network throughout your journey.

47. Try never to look lost

We know sometimes you need to check a map or your GPS while trying to navigate new places, but you should try to do it more subtly. A great hack if you're walking is to wear earphones (without playing music) and listen to the GPS directions rather than looking down at your phone screen.
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This way you can walk purposefully with your head up. It also provides a subtle and effective way to receive directions without overtly staring at your phone screen, which can be a signal of uncertainty or vulnerability. You maintain a low-profile appearance while still receiving the guidance you need.

48. Don't go overboard with drinks

It's sad that you have to hold your back on vacation if you enjoy a drink and want to party, but unfortunately it's also something to be aware of when traveling alone as a woman. Try not to drink so much that you feel drunk or lose your sense of awareness, as you need to have your wits about you!
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Moderation is key, and being conscious of your alcohol intake is a proactive measure for personal safety. Drinking to the point of feeling drunk or losing your sense of awareness can potentially compromise your ability to make sound decisions and navigate your surroundings with vigilance.

49. Book as much as you can in advance

You should always leave room for spontaneous plans on a vacation, especially if you're looking to get insider information from locals when you're there, but you should still plan as much as you can in advance with wiggle room to change plans or have empty days to fill.
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Having a rough itinerary, knowing where you're going, and having a sense of your activities offer several advantages. It helps you stay organized, ensures you make the most of your time in a new place, and provides a safety net in terms of having a clear direction.

50. Get travel insurance

Finally, travel insurance will help to keep you protected while you're traveling. It's peace of mind while you're traveling about, but it will also protect your physically as well as financially if you run into an emergency. Be sure to research the best prices for your particular trip before you go!
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Investing in travel insurance is not just a precautionary measure; it's a proactive step toward ensuring a smooth and secure solo travel experience. It allows you to explore with confidence, knowing that you have a safety net in place, both physically and financially.