1. Be sure to arrive during daytime.
This is when bus stations, airports, and hotels will be at their most active. People looking to prey on tourists can do it with ease at night, and people who want to help can look threatening. Make sure your arrival time will get you where you’re going during daylight hours.
2. Store important things separately.
If you’re keeping your money in a money belt, keep your credit cards in another place, and your passport in another. If the worst happens, and something gets lost and stolen, you’ll be better equipped to help yourself if not everything is gone. Additionally, if you keep reaching for your money belt over and over, you’ll attract attention to yourself.
3. If you’re leaving the country, register your excursion with the Department of State.
You can do this by phone or online. Doing so will ensure the country’s embassy is aware that you’re in the country. If something happens, such as an accident, the embassy will be poised to search for you and assist you. Even if friends and family know exactly where you are, registering with the Department of State can only help.
4. Look for people to group up with.
Have you met friendly people at the bar or the pool? See if they want to join you when you go out to dinner. Would you like to explore the area’s sites? See if there’s a tour group you can join up with. There’s a lot of truth to the idea of safety in numbers, and surrounding yourself with others will help keep you protected.
5. Take minimal luggage.
It can be a struggle to lug a lot of bags around on your own, and if criminals see you struggling, they may use the opportunity to grab one of your suitcases. Before you leave, be sure you can carry your luggage quickly and smoothly. If you can’t, it’s time to cut down your bags to the essentials.
7. Trust your instincts.
If something makes you suspicious or nervous, it’s better to play it safe and avoid it. If you’re uncomfortable walking back to your hotel, don’t be afraid to call a cab. If you have a bad feeling about something, it’s probably for a reason and it’s best to go with your gut. Even if your concerns are nothing, it can’t hurt listen to them. There’s no such thing as playing it too safe when you’re traveling alone!
Don’t be afraid to travel alone, just take the necessary precautions. As long as you put a little extra effort into keeping yourself safe, traveling on your own can be as rewarding as any big group trip might be. Have a happy trip, and stay safe.