As we all know quite well by now, there’s an abundance of female travelers out there, especially the solo ones who are taming the world like they are getting paid for it. So a woman about the world isn’t really something of a rare image and there are seldom any female travelers who face issues while traveling abroad. But it simply just takes an unlucky exception to be one of those women facing some problem or the other while traveling the world.
Even the most seasoned of female travelers can find themselves to be in this kind of tricky situations, so your experience as a traveler in no way guarantees your safety. Always remember, leaving for your gap year you’re also leaving behind your home full of loving family members and full-time worriers (your parents) and also legions of well-wishers and friends behind who’ll be concerned about you. So rather than letting their worries seep into you and making a mess of your bombastic gap year plans, its way better to keep a safety plan handy.
These bits of advice are in no way meant to scare you or deter you from your travel plans just because you’re biologically different from the male kind. It is just to make you aware of the potential issues that you might but we pray not face while traveling abroad. So, it is really always better to be prepared for how a situation can be best managed in a safe manner. Rest of your travel worries, you leave it all on us!
Things that you ought to keep in mind are:
Going solo or with friends
There are certain places around the world that are potentially dangerous yet exceptionally exotic traveling hotspots and many solo female travelers are concerned thinking they might stick out like a sore thumb and become an easy target for many. A major portion of being safe truly depends on the place you’re traveling to and similar concerns as the one mentioned above can leave you wondering whether you should be traveling alone or with friends?
Of course, having people with you can make you feel safer and secure about the choices that you make while traveling. But don’t let such fears hinder your solo travel plans in any way. Going by statistical data, about 60% of gap year travelers head out on their own for a solo adventure around the world. If you’re one of those girls who hasn’t got a BFF gang or that special friend who would be perfect to share your gap year journey with, all you need are some sensible safety precautions and you’ll be well on your way!
Maintaining a fitness regime is quite important given the fact that you’re going to be on the road most of the time and most of these times you’re probably going to carry around a chunky of piece of backpack as well being the quintessential backpacking traveler that you are. A fitness regime also means having a healthy lifestyle and quite off chances of being a tired traveler. But more so, an exercised mind would have a much better reflex in warding off any attackers, even if it’s for pulling out that mace from your backpack. Put that in with equal amounts of strength and agility, and it would be the perfect combination to scare off anyone who might have mistaken you for a fragile girl traveling alone.
No matter if you’re a traveling female or not, there’s nothing like a woman dressed a little too scantily to catch a man’s attention, especially the bad ones’. Your wardrobe choices are definitely your own and no one should be allowed to have a say on what you wear and when you wear it. It is said you feel the best when you look the best and you might feel life highlighting your best features while going for a night out in a new place or even for some fun beach time, but prying eyes are never too far. It is always suggested to keep in mind the dressing norms and traditions of a place that you’re traveling to before making wardrobe selections for public places. Standing out as a tourist with skimpy clothes on wouldn’t be the best situation for you as a female traveler.
Avoid drinking TOO much
Getting sloshed in an unknown place as a female traveler would be a really reckless move. It is true, there is nothing like bonding over a drink or two with the locals or even with a new group of travelers you’ve met along the way. But as the old saying goes, too much of something is never good, similarly overdoing your drinking and bonding can go eerily wrong in many ways. Though we do not need to tell you this ( but we will, still) drinking numbs your nerves and rids you of inhibitions, which might seem like a good thing when not traveling in an unknown country.
Know your limits when drinking and take it in moderation and don’t let peer pressure make you show off what a seasoned drinker you are. You’d in no way profit from that cause you’ll be the one waking up with a bad case of hangover and you’ll be the one dismissing your safety precautions in the process. And need we remind you the rule of thumb- Don’t take any drink from strangers, even if you’ve gotten friendly with someone, don’t accept drinks unless you’re absolutely sure of someone’s intentions!
Avert unwanted attention
From sleazy men passing comments and making unwanted sexual advances to even touts following you around, these things can sometimes get on your nerves. While traveling alone is a whole lotta fun, there may be certain instances when you’ll find yourself dealing with unwanted attention and rather than getting worked up and taking rash decisions, you should take it slow and think wisely. If someone unwanted approaches you to kick off a conversation, you can turn them down gently and let them know with a smile that you’re not interested.
But if the person persists on even after you turn him down, there are always good samaritans around who are keen on helping any tourists or travelers. So you can seek help from the locals around and raise an alarm, and that person will surely get scared and leave. You can seek help from fellow travelers even and make your way into the nearby shops or restaurants or knock doors of homes even if you feel someone is nagging on and following you around. When you’re traveling on one of our tours with GDA there are zero chances of such incidents happening cause you’ll already be with a group and your coordinator is going to be the local hero who’s going to fend off any miscreants from far away.
No, you don’t need to be on your toes at all times to be completely aware of the situation around you. We know your travels are more of a journey for self-satisfaction rather than a spy mission like James Bond’s, so you need not be in spy mode at all times while traveling. But you do need to stay alert when out there. Though I would say this precaution equally applies to both female and male travelers, many tend to target single female travelers as an easy hit. Be completely alert about your belonging and also your surrounding, especially when in crowded places. Use your common sense and don’t fall prey to the scheming tactics of pickpockets and muggers. If you’re taking a train or a bus and have got lots of luggage with you, you can keep them chained with each other and when you feel like you’re going to doze off, you can even chain them on to yourself to keep them safe.
Your inner confidence plays a big part in your safety when traveling abroad. When you have ample self-confidence, it will surely channel through and be visible on your face and your body gestures as well. It is always better to ooze confidence when traveling rather than appearing meek and fragile. Self-defense classes before leaving for your gap year could give you a huge boost of confidence and help you in warding off any kinds of attackers. If you’ve lost your way while wandering about, rather than looking the part as a lost tourist, keep up your confidence and try and figure out a way yourself. We think having a confident vibe in yourself could successfully fend off miscreants and keep you safe and protected during your gap year journey.
We love our female travelers, come they in group or alone and our travel teams are always on its toes to make your journey beautiful and safe out there. Along with our 24x7 support team, you will also be having your trip coordinator alongside at all times keeping you and the entire group safe.
But when you’re venturing out on your own to explore some hidden gems or to get a feel of the place you’re traveling in be sure to keep these pointers in check for these can keep your safe in the long run. So, dive in the madness that a gap year is and leave your worries behind. You are strong and invincible, ready to tame the world!