Sometimes a gal needs to get away and if your friends don’t have the time and your significant other isn’t up for it (or nonexistent) it’s time for a solo trip! Traveling alone can be intimidating, but equipped with a positive attitude and the right safety tips, vacations by yourself can prove to be some of the best travels of your life. So pick a Top 20 deal and go!
Be prepared: Know as much about your destination as possible, particularly for foreign travels. Be aware of the culture and the social norms for women in the country you’re visiting so you don’t stand out as a clueless traveler. Look at a map before you get there, read the travel guides and the message boards online. Be as much of an expert on the place you’re going before you even get there.
Tell family and friends: Make copies of your travel documents (passport, itineraries, visas) and leave them with someone you trust as well as saving digital copies in your email account. Tell the same person where you will be going and keep them updated as your trip goes on if possible, just in case.
Be confident: If you look like you know what you’re doing and where you’re going, chances are you won’t be on the receiving end of unwanted attention. Stay alert -- walk with your head up, plan your route before you take off (via train, plane, foot, bus, etc.) and keep a tight grip on your personal items. Remain in well-lit, public areas.
Trust your instincts: Do what feels right for you. If someone that gives you the creeps sits down next to you on the bus, you can move or get off at the next stop. If you’re uncomfortable with your lodging, switch rooms or even switch hotels. Be assertive and remember that no amount of money is worth saving over your safety, so bring that plastic for emergencies!
Do what you want: The most indulgent thing about a solo vacation is doing whatever you want to do. Dine at the fancy restaurant you’ve been eying down the corner from your hotel, check out the art exhibit at the modern art museum, go on the sightseeing tour and sit on the upper deck or peruse the local market and buy whatever you like without guilt from your travel partners. It’s your vacation so be safe and have a good time.
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