How do you stay safe when travelling alone?
Travelling alone can be a daunting experience but it can also be one of the most memorable and liberating times of your life.
Not only do you get to travel on your terms, but you also get to learn new things about yourself that you didn’t know before. However, there are a few dangers of travelling alone and solo travellers can be more vulnerable. There is no one to look out for you or anyone to keep an eye on your belongings, but don’t look too terrified – you stand out!
Travelling alone safety tips
If you’re heading on a solo trip abroad, our safety tips for travelling alone will help you to stay safe and be prepared for an emergency. Follow our travelling solo tips below.
Do your research
Before setting off on your solo travels, make sure you do your research.
It’s worth researching the safest destinations to go to on your own – there are plenty of recommendations written by solo travellers on the internet to help you pick a safe place to visit. Research the safest solo-friendly accommodation, and stay in hostels and hotels that have multiple positive ratings and good reviews so you know what to expect from the staff and in the neighbourhood. When you are there, speak to other travellers and travel with them if they are going your way. If you are crossing borders, it’s always better to do it with someone else if you can.
Share your itinerary
Give a copy of your itinerary to a friend or family member so they are aware of your whereabouts if something was to happen to you. Let them know your flight times, hotel addresses and your daily plans so they can keep in touch with you and check in at the end of the day.
Create a list of emergency contacts
Create a document of your emergency contacts. This can include your own personal contact information, as well as names and phone numbers of emergency contacts back home. You should have more than one copy of this list and keep one accessible in case you are involved in an accident.
Have a plan
Avoid the dangers of travelling alone by having a plan. Not only should you have a plan for your solo trip – where you are staying and how you are getting there - you should also have a back-up plan in case of an emergency. This can include what you will do if you lose your money or phone, or miss a flight.
Learn the local language
Learn a couple of phrases in the native language so you can communicate with the locals. Knowing a few words in the local language can be useful if you need to ask for help. It’s also worth knowing something about the local culture so you can respect it and not put your foot in it!
Put safety first
Finally, our top travelling solo tip is to put safety first. Stay safe when travelling alone by:
- Planning your transport
- Being extra careful at night
- Asking other travellers whether the place you are going to is safe
- Keeping your valuables secure in a “bum bag” rather than in your pockets (including your passport)
- Keeping some money in a different bag in case your main bag is stolen
- Being aware of pickpockets.
For more travelling alone safety tips, visit our Travel Safe campaign.
If you are involved in an accident while you’re travelling alone, you can contact us for free legal advice about making a claim for compensation. Visit our foreign accident claims page for more information about the support we offer.