13 Safety Tips for Women Traveling Alone

I recently traveled alone to Europe and here are some tips that I think can be very helpful. Hope you enjoy!

  1. TELL PEOPLE WHERE YOU’RE GOING. Pick someone from home that always knows where your supposed to be. Especially if you’re going to multiple countries. If possible provide them with an itinerary and copies of your passport.
  2. UPDATE YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA FOR SAFETY. I made sure to let people know where I was via social media, because if I went missing (knock on wood), my Facebook page was a good way of people knowing where I was last. Also, make sure your FB page is private so only friends and family can see.
  3. HAVE A PLAN. I am one of those people like to venture off and see what the day brings me, but when it comes to safety having a plan is always better. Your days flows smoothly and it beats the odds of getting lost.
  4. ALWAYS HAVE A MAP. I am the kind of person that likes to walk A LOT. But that is a good way to get lost in a new city. So, you should always have a map handy for the city and their transportation systems. Don’t count on your phone maps depending on your data plan of course.
  5. KNOW THE TRANSPORTATION SYSTEM. How will you be getting around? What is the best method of transportation in the city your visiting? If you’re using an underground subway for example, make sure you understand how it works. And always purchase extra or unlimited rides. It’s always the smartest choice.
  6. BE AWARE OF LOCAL SCAMS. How do the locals scam tourist? Read about the dangers tourists face in each city you visit. Whether it be pick-pocketing or even homeless scams. Don’t be afraid to ignore people or simply saying ‘no’.
  7. IF YOU DON’T KNOW THE LANGUAGE, and you’re an English speaker chances are there will be people that speak English. Go for the younger people, they are learning English more nowadays. If you’re lost always go into a café, restaurant or business to ask for directions versus asking people on the street.
  8. BE AWARE, DO WHAT IS SMART AND USE COMMON SENSE. This is the best way to ensure safety, if it doesn’t feel or look right don’t do it.
  10. IF YOU WANT SOMEONE TO TAKE A PHOTO OF YOU, ASK TOURISTS. What I would do was look at the people around me and if I saw couples or friends struggling to take a photo I’d offer to take it for them, they would see me alone and offer to take one for me as well. It worked like a charm each time.
  11. DON’T TELL PEOPLE YOU’RE ALONE. Come up with a lie, they don’t know you’re lying.
  12. EAT AT BUSY PLACES. It’s better to be surrounded by people than to eat where there is hardly anybody and it’s shady.


For more tips check out the Buzzfeed article that helped me prepare for my solo adventure!

And P.S these are tips for men can use too.



One Comment Add yours

  1. H-A-B says:

    Great tips Denise.

    As a traveler and a womens self defense instructor I’d like to share a tip of my own which I hope your female readers will read, remember and share with other women.

    I have been teaching Krav Maga to women and girls for over 5 years and we teach a very effective technique which I feel should should be in every woman and girls arsenal. We are a women only event, run by women, for women, and there is an extremely effective technique what we teach to women of all ages, which I feel we should all share as far and wide as possible.

    The technique is the “groin grab” self defense technique which is to be used against a male attacker, which is now taught in many womens self defense classes, and there is actually a little trick to it…

    To execute this technique, you’re going to take your hand and quickly grasp between the attackers thighs underhand. Its going to feel like you’re “cradling” the testicles. Quickly grab hold of, or snatch the testicles and dig your fingertips into the fragile skin BEHIND the scrotum. Then, once you have a good grip, you turn your hand into a vice, with your fingers digging inwards, around the back and over the top of the testicles. If you do it right, you should feel the testes INSIDE your hand which is holding the scrotum. You want, whenever possible, to hook your fingers over and around at least one testicle. One of them is enough.

    Then, with your hands in a claw and your fingertips latched around the testes, you turn your hand sharply, as though you were turning a doorknob. Simultaneously, squeeze hard and pull the testicles away from his body as fast and as hard as you can. DO NOT LET GO OF THEM. This is very important. What happens then, is that your assailant usually screams out in pain and then tries to grab the wrist of your hand holding him in a futile attempt to try to get you to release him. DON’T. He then quickly loses one of the natural advantages he usually has over us (his strength) within a matter of seconds. Vomiting, curling over, collapsing and convulsing is common. Shock and unconsciousness can set in within 8 seconds. If he initially starts to fight back then you tuck your head in and keep squeezing his testicles until he faints. This only takes a matter of seconds. When he collapses, which he will, you get away to safety as quickly as possible and call for help.

    It’s never too late to perform this technique at any stage of an attack, and that even includes the option of reaching down if he’s on top of you, but it is easiest to do when the testicles are exposed and closest to you where you can grab hold of them. I’ve actually met several women in my life who have fought off their attackers in this way and one did it when her attacker was on top of her and raping her at the point he lost control. Don’t ever hold back. Some women scream while they are doing this, and some women think of a loved one being harmed to help overcome any bad feelings of hurting someone else even if they are being hurt themselves. Do whatever you have to do if you feel it helps.

    If done properly, and done with enough force, this technique can even lead to the testicles rupturing. It’s actually easier to do than most women believe, and just about all of us have the capability to injure an attackers testicles in this way – whether we are young girls still of school age, or whether we are great grandmothers. We, as women have no part of our bodies as vulnerable as a mans testicles. After all, if you think about it testicles are just small objects of extreme vulnerability to pain squishiness wrapped in a delicate layer of skin which offers them no protection at all from this kind of counterattack by a woman. Most importantly, this fact holds true no matter what size your attacker is, nor how strong he is. And no matter how angry he is, and how much he’s threatened what he’s going to do to you, he’s going to drop. Don’t let anyone (usually men who are very uncomfortable with thoughts of women beating them in combat) try to convince you otherwise.

    I once worked with a group of Somali women who informed me that grandmothers, mothers, and daughters between generations shared this powerful method of fighting off men. They even have a name for it in Somalia and they call the move “Qworegoys”. They were surprised that women in the West didn’t seem to share this information as much as they expected, and even more surprised that most women didn’t even seem aware of this technique.

    I know that this advice would have been a difficult read for many Women, but our lives are worth far more than a rapists testicles and we should be prepared to do whatever it takes to get away to safety. Please help to share this advice with as many other women and girls in any way you can. It could one day be a life saver.


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