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Your Guide to Safe Traveling

One thing always comes first in all your adventures and experiences on your travels -your safety! Therefore, we created a guide for you. Here, you can find the most important information and tips for safe traveling so you can just focus on enjoying your trip!

The Basics

Many things to consider for safe traveling are probably common knowledge. Nevertheless, we have put together a few of these general tips for safe traveling so you have a quick overview and can recall them again.

Cash and valuables

Since there are thieves and criminals in every country, it’s important to keep your valuables and cash safe. When you’re traveling, lock all your valuables in a locker or safe. This is especially important in hostels where you share your room with several strangers.

If you are in cities and places with a lot of people, pay special attention to your wallet and keep your important documents and objects close to you. Avoid keeping money or valuables in anything with easy access, like a backpack or your back pocket. If you haven’t had one before, “bum bags” are a good way to keep your wallet and phone safe!

It is also advisable to keep cash in different places so, in case something is stolen, not everything is gone at once.

Places

No matter how safe you think your travel destination is, avoid sketchy, secluded places or neighborhoods. At night in particular, and sometimes even during the day, avoid certain areas, especially if you are alone. Find out which locations and places are considered unsafe in before you reach your destination so that you don’t accidentally stumble upon them yourself.

People

One of the best things about traveling is meeting different people from different countries. But, you should be careful here too. Even if you’ve traveled with them for a few hours or maybe even days, they are still strangers. Of course, always assuming the worst is not fun.

However, you should always pay attention to your safety and not trust strangers too much, especially when you are traveling alone. You should not go to secluded places with strangers or get into their cars. Also, be careful with your valuables and don’t leave them unattended by people who you have just met. A healthy dose of caution is important for your own safety when traveling!

Food and drinks

Drinks and meals can often be the highlight of the day. Though, just as much as they lift the mood, they can ruin things very quickly. In countries where the food supply doesn’t match what you may be used to in the West, be careful what you eat. In general, you shouldn’t eat anything that hasn’t been washed or cooked. You should always peel fruit, to minimize consuming bacteria. Also, be careful with drinking as in many countries tap water is not drinking water quality! As a tip here: always order your drinks without ice cubes since these are usually made from tap water and if you have to drink the water, boil it first.

At parties, you should never leave your drinks unattended and simply accept anything from strangers. Make sure that your drinks always come from sealed bottles and only drink from these.

Scammers

To not fall for tricksters and their scams in the first place. In many countries, there are certain scams that are more unique to them than others. In Paris, for example, street vendors frequently put bracelets and jewelry on you that you just wanted to look at. Since you’re already wearing it, you won’t be let go until you buy it. To avoid such situations, you should do extensive research on the country or city you are traveling to.

Preparations

The most important step for a safe journey starts before the journey itself. Namely, with the proper travel preparation. These additional prep tips will help you to have a safe yet incredible journey.

Vaccinations

You will only enjoy your trip if you are healthy. Many countries may be home to diseases that you and your body are not aware of and may not be common in your homeland. Therefore, you need to find out about necessary vaccinations, so these diseases won’t pose a threat to your health and your safety. If you are unsure about this, just ask your doctor and get a consultation. Inform yourself early on, as many vaccinations take time to guarantee complete protection or must be given in multiple doses. You might be surprised by how many there are in the world!

Insurance

Depending on where you are going and how long your trip will be, different types of insurance are useful. In any case, it is advisable to have international health insurance so you are covered and can be looked after if anything should happen on your trip.

Other insurances that make sense are, for example, travel cancellation insurance or travel interruption insurance. Travel cancellation insurance covers the costs for you in case of cancellations or changes to bookings. Travel interruption insurance, on the other hand, protects you against additional costs that you have to face if a trip is interrupted prematurely.

Travel warnings

Before you decide to travel to a country, you should see if there are any travel warnings from the Federal Foreign Office. In general, you should be up-to-date with the political condition so you can assess how safe the situation is at your travel destination and how it might further develop. This includes knowing about natural disasters and extreme weather situations. In some places, different seasons can bring hurricanes, tornadoes, or earthquakes. So, do your research so that these factors won’t jeopardize a safe journey.

Tips for Solo Travelers

When you are traveling alone, you need to take special care. Especially as a woman, you can often come into situations in which you feel unsafe. If you are traveling alone for the first time and do not have that much travel experience, these tips will help you.

Which country?

If you want to travel alone, you should already consider that when planning your trip. Some countries are safer for solo travelers than others. Finding out which countries are safest for you personally will take some research. Since a 40-year-old man will have different experiences than a 19-year-old girl, the opinions on which country is safe can be very subjective. Besides age and gender, several factors like your skin color and sexuality play a role in the safety factor of a country. Therefore, decide for yourself what is a safe country for you, and don’t just rely on different lists that declare places as unsafe or safe.

Contact person

Before you start your trip, find a person to whom you will entrust your travel details and who you will always keep up to date. Let the person know where you are and when you will be traveling to a new location. Set fixed times during the day when you will report and let them know that everything is okay. Especially when traveling alone, your loved ones at home need to know that you are safe. It also gives you a bit of security on your travels.

Accommodation

Some accommodations in certain places are not suitable if you are traveling alone. Especially as a woman, there are some things you can look out for that will make you feel more secure when choosing your accommodation. Watch out for essential items like lockers and safes where you can store your valuables. Check in advance which area your accommodation is in and how far you are to the nearest shops, bus and train stations, city center, etc. Many hostels offer female-only dorms, which can be an important additional safety factor for you.

Planning

We certainly don’t want to interfere with your spontaneous travel flow. However, it is advisable to plan in advance. You can take precautions to avoid unnecessary danger. For example, make sure that you organize your accommodation for the night already in the morning. Always cross national borders early in the day, as there can often be waiting times, and you don’t want to get stuck in a sketchy border town overnight. The same applies to long train or bus journeys. It is best to always arrive early in the day so your arrival time at your destination is before it gets dark.

Parties

Partying is just part of the backpacking adventure. But, especially when alone, you should be careful! Keep your valuables close to you and do not entrust them to strangers. Also, as a solo traveler, you should not drink too much to remain fully conscious and to be able to assess situations around you.

Conclusion

The feeling of security is important when you travel. To avoid getting into unsafe situations that make you feel uncomfortable, you can prepare a few things.

The most important thing is to inform yourself about the country before and that you know what you can and can’t do. This way, you can travel without problems.

Even if the dangers and risks of traveling seem very intimidating, we still want to encourage you to go on your adventure! Something can always happen to you anywhere in the world but, if you do your research and do not act recklessly, you have nothing to worry about.

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