5 Safety tips for women when traveling
Anytime you travel to a new place, whether it be a new city, state or country, there are many aspects of your safety that you should consider. As a female there are even more specific safety precautions that you should always take no matter where you are visiting. Here are 5 of the most important tips to remember as a female.
1) Don’t go anywhere alone, especially at night
This may seem simple. Would you ever choose to walk a half mile in the dark by yourself? Probably not. However, you may find yourself in this situation if you're unprepared. Make sure that you know what time the sun sets where you are going. Plan your daily events around that. Don’t get caught trying to get home as the sun is setting because you didn’t realize what time daylight ends. Additionally, always bring a “buddy” with you no matter where you're going. There truly is safety in numbers.
2) Don’t be a theft target
Don’t carry a lot of money or expensive items on you and avoid wearing jewelry. Dress modestly to ensure that you don’t attract the wrong kind of attention. Learn the dress code of the culture you are visiting and participate appropriately. You don’t have to try to look like a local, but try to avoid looking like a tourist.
3) Familiarize yourself with your surroundings
Research the area you are traveling. What areas should you avoid? Where is the U.S. Embassy located? What is the culture like? Any laws or customs to be aware of? Also, make sure you are aware of what is going on around you. Large crowds can be a feeding zone for dangerous situations. Stay in lit areas and listen to the “gut feeling” that we women have.
4) Always tell someone where you are going and keep your leader's contact information with you
Simply that. Make sure someone knows where you are going and when you plan to be back, even if you are going with a small group. Keep important numbers (like your leader's cell number) on you. You always want to be ready if you need to get in touch with someone you trust.
5) Don’t give out too much information about you to the locals
This could be tougher to decipher. On a mission trip, you want to connect with the natives and show that you are there to serve them. However, this doesn’t necessarily mean giving them phone, email or additional information about you, or inviting them to visit the hotel/hostel where you are staying. Make sure your communication stays appropriate and if at any time if you feel uncomfortable, take a step back (and possibly walk away).
Think about it
Preparation and awareness are key in staying safe. Be prepared and be smart. By applying these simple steps to stay safe, you'll be able to focus on the mission work you that you have set out to complete.
Written by Teri