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After getting thoroughly beat up by a local drunk in broad daylight on a busy street in Mysore India I believe I’m qualified to provide some tips to other solo female travelers about how to NOT get beat up by a local while traveling abroad. To be honest it wasn’t the first time I’d been swung around by my hair and it probably won’t be the last but on this occasion it was avoidable. The ability to not get beat up by a local will come quite naturally to most solo female travelers. So this guide is for the special few who like myself need all the help they can get.

Solo Female Traveler Safety

Trust Your Instincts

If a situation doesn’t feel quite right listen to your gut and don’t ignore it like I did in India. On most of the occasions I’ve run into trouble while traveling solo (and OMG there’s been many incidents) if I had paid more attention to what my intuition was telling me, I could have avoided the issue.

Solo Female Traveler Safety

Try To Blend In With The Locals

Dress as they dress, if the women are wearing conservative clothing with their hair covered make sure you dress in the same way to show respect for their culture. The last thing you want to do as a solo female traveler is draw attention to yourself and offend their customs and traditions.

Be Discreet When Taking Photos

If you’re not in a touristy area where the locals often expect/enjoy having their picture taken don’t walk around with a camera hanging around your neck. This draws attention to yourself and screams tourist which screams target. Be respectful of the locals and ask their permission before taking a photo. Can you imagine a stranger zooming in on your face and papping a photo of you while you’re in Costco stocking up on vodka avocados. Sweet Jesus!

Do Not Be Confrontational

This is a tough one if you’re a bit of a closet psycho like myself but I think in most cases it’s better to take flight rather than fight. Especially if you’re a small girl and he’s a big guy. You probably can’t take him. I know you need to stick up for yourself sometimes but when traveling in a foreign country it’s just not cool to get in a fight with a local. Period. And it’s sure as hell not ladylike.

Here’s some advice from an English girl who doesn’t ever follow her own advice but maybe this time she might and yes she is writing in third person right now for some reason that cannot be explained…

The Advice: If you get in a scuffle while traveling abroad here’s what to do; Apologize profusely even if it’s not your fault, then apologize again (and perhaps one more time for good luck) then slowly, quietly, side-step away. If that fails, start channeling Gandhi pronto and hope for the best. Perhaps take a moment to think about your KARMA… are you due a punch in the face? Now might be the time. Either embrace it or play dead.

In a nutshell: Just try to be cool. Hmmm, sounds so simple.

Was this the best solo female traveler advice you’ve ever read? I bet it was 😉 Now you’ve fine-tuned your staying alive skills you can leave the knuckle dusters/body armor/chastity belt at home and set off on your travels as an empowered solo female traveler.

Beat up abroad: If only I'd been a little bit smarter/classier/just an entirely different person. #travel #fail Click To Tweet
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Guide To Staying Alive For Women Travelers

On a serious note, do take every precaution you can to stay safe when on your travels. I’m very fortunate to be able to laugh about my mishaps. If you have some of your own tips and advice for solo female travelers then please share them in the comments section below…


Come on ladies let’s stay safe while traveling (but don’t kill anyone with this stuff ok)…