15 Essential Safety Tips for Women Traveling Alone

With the holidays approaching, it is the perfect time to start planning a getaway.

Sometimes it's hard rallying up your friends to commit to time off because everyone leads busy lives, but if you're feeling adventurous enough, there's nothing wrong with hitting the road alone.

Deciding where to go may not be hard, but once you get there, being safe and aware should be just as easy.

With help from Travel + Leisure, here are some crucial things to take note of when you are going somewhere alone.

  1. When deciding a hotel location, aim for a well-trafficked street (neighborhood restaurants and late-night stores mean traffic, corporate offices mean darkness). Affluent residential areas tend to have more efficient transportation and fewer threatening street people. 
  2. Which hotel should you pick? Smaller is smarter because you want the staff to be familiar with guests and with you. The smaller the lobby, the more noticeable the loiterers.
  3. What type of room should I pick? Request a room one near the elevators and away from any renovation work. Have your key out when you leave the elevator.
  4. Put expensive clothing on hangers under other garments. Robbers usually "shop" what they can see.
  5. Stand near the elevator buttons with your back to the wall; if threatened, push all the buttons at once.
  6. Study a map before going out; once on the street, use a pocket-sized guidebook to avoid looking like a tourist.
  7. Dress down and avoid jewelry, even a chain that's fake gold can be ripped off your neck. But do consider wearing a wedding ring. It will give the illusion that your 'fiance' is near.
  8. If you must ask for directions, approach families or women with children. To be extra safe, say, "Where is the —? I'm meeting my husband there."
  9. When using public rest rooms, use the corner stall.
  10. Use covered luggage tags. Instead of your home address, put your work address.
  11. If you place your carry-on bag on the floor when sitting in a restaurant or other public area, put your foot through the strap; don't leave it loose.
  12. When possible, park so you won't have to back out. It makes for a speedier departure.
  13. In your car, keep items out of sight (especially maps and guidebooks).
  14. Don't just check the weather at your destination; also make a note of when the sun rises and sets.
  15. If you're the victim of a crime, contact the police and keep the report. Insurance companies require this documentation.

For more safety tips visit Travel + Leisure and feel free to contact the Women's Travel Club at (800) 480-4448.

NEXT: The Top 3 Cheapest and Safest Places for Women to Travel Solo »

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