Stay Safe And Alive: 18 Must-Do Travel Safety Tips For Solo Travelers


This story recently took the travel world by storm: A British man died, and dozens were injured when a Singapore Airlines flight from London to Singapore encountered severe turbulence, forcing an emergency landing in Bangkok. The Boeing 777-300ER experienced turbulence over Myanmar, causing the plane to drop 6,000 feet in minutes. Among the 71 injured, six were seriously hurt.

We never know what can happen during our travels; many things are beyond our control. However, we can always do our part to help ensure that the odds of accidents, injuries, or anything untoward will decrease. It’s not about being paranoid — it’s about having common sense and intentionally removing yourself from unnecessary danger.

If you’re planning on traveling solo any time soon, here are some 18 must-do safety tips and hacks you need to do:

Research Your Destination

Deposit Photos

Thoroughly research your destination before departing. Look into local customs, cultural norms, and laws to avoid any misunderstandings. Check travel advisories and warnings from reliable sources like government websites.

Learn about the safest neighborhoods and areas to avoid. Familiarize yourself with the local language basics or carry a translation app. Knowing emergency contacts, such as the local embassy, can be crucial.

Share Your Itinerary


Always share your detailed itinerary with a trusted friend or family member. Include flight details, accommodation addresses, and daily plans. Regularly check in with them to update your status.

Use location-sharing apps for real-time updates. This provides a safety net in case something goes wrong. It also gives your loved ones peace of mind knowing where you are.

Stay in Safe Accommodations


Choose reputable accommodations with good reviews from solo travelers. Prioritize places with 24-hour security and reception services. Hostels and guesthouses often have social environments, reducing loneliness and adding safety.

Book through trusted platforms like or Airbnb. Avoid ground-floor rooms that can be easily accessed from outside. Ensure your room has functional locks and a safe for valuables.

Pack Light and Smart


Packing light helps you stay mobile and lessens the risk of losing belongings. Choose a sturdy, comfortable backpack over a suitcase. Carry only essential items, leaving expensive jewelry and gadgets at home.

Keep a list of emergency contacts, copies of important documents, and some cash in separate places. Use anti-theft bags with locking zippers and slash-proof straps to minimize the chance of theft or loss during your travels.

Stay Connected

Deposit Photos

Ensure you have a reliable means of communication, like an international SIM card or portable Wi-Fi device. Download important apps like maps, translation tools, and local emergency services. Save offline maps in case of connectivity issues.

Regularly update your location and travel progress with someone back home. Join online travel forums and groups for solo travelers for tips and support. Staying connected helps in emergencies and keeps you informed.

Blend In with the Locals


Avoid standing out as a tourist to reduce the risk of being targeted. Dress modestly and in accordance with local customs. Observe and mimic the behavior of locals to better integrate. Avoid flashy accessories and expensive gadgets in public.

Walk confidently and act as if you know where you are going, even if you don’t. This can deter potential threats who often prey on obvious tourists.

Only Use Reliable Transportation

Deposit Photos

Opt for well-known, licensed transportation services. Avoid hailing taxis from the street; instead, use official taxi stands or rideshare apps. Research public transportation schedules and routes ahead of time. At night, prefer taxis or rideshares over walking alone.

Inquire about the safest modes of transport at your accommodation. Reliable transportation reduces the risk of getting lost or encountering unsafe situations.

Trust Your Instincts

Deposit Photos

Your intuition is a powerful tool; listen to it. If a situation or person feels off, remove yourself immediately. Avoid secluded areas, especially at night. Politely decline offers from overly friendly strangers if it makes you uncomfortable.

Always have a plan for exiting uncomfortable situations. Trusting your instincts can help you avoid potentially dangerous scenarios.

Stay Sober


While it’s okay to enjoy local beverages, always drink responsibly. Avoid accepting drinks from strangers. Never leave your drink unattended. Be aware of your surroundings and how much you’ve consumed.

Alcohol impairs judgment, making you more vulnerable. Staying sober ensures you can make clear, safe decisions.

Keep a Low Profile


Minimize sharing your travel details publicly, especially on social media. Use privacy settings to control who sees your posts. Avoid tagging your current location in real time. Discuss travel plans discreetly and avoid displaying your wealth.

Use hotel safes for valuables instead of carrying them around. Keeping a low profile reduces the chances of attracting unwanted attention.

Carry a Personal Safety Device

Deposit Photos

Equip yourself with personal safety devices like a whistle, pepper spray, or a personal alarm. These can be easily carried in your pocket or attached to your bag. Familiarize yourself with how to use them effectively. In an emergency, these devices can attract attention and deter attackers.

Regularly check the functionality of these devices. Being prepared with a safety device adds an extra layer of security.

Secure Your Belongings

Deposit Photos

Use a money belt or hidden pouch to store cash and important documents. Always lock your bag and use luggage locks while in transit. Avoid placing valuables in external pockets. Be cautious in crowded places where pickpocketing is common.

Invest in an anti-theft backpack with security features. Securing your belongings prevents loss and theft.

Learn Basic Self-Defense


Taking a basic self-defense class can be empowering and useful. Learn techniques for escaping holds and protecting yourself. Practice situational awareness and how to avoid dangerous situations. Carry self-defense tools and know how to use them.

Regularly practice these skills to keep them sharp. Basic self-defense knowledge can give you confidence and a safety advantage.

Know Local Emergency Numbers


Familiarize yourself with local emergency numbers for police, medical services, and fire departments. Save these numbers in your phone and keep a written copy. Know the location of the nearest hospital and police station.

Understand the local process for reporting crimes. In case of an emergency, having this information readily available is crucial. Quick access to emergency services can be life-saving.

Practice Hotel Room Safety


Upon checking in, inspect your hotel room for security features. Ensure windows and doors lock properly. Use the peephole before opening the door to strangers. Familiarize yourself with emergency exits and evacuation routes.

Keep a flashlight by your bedside. Practicing hotel room safety reduces the risk of incidents during your stay.

Stay Alert in Crowded Places


Crowded places are prime spots for pickpocketing and scams. Keep your bag close and avoid carrying valuables in easily accessible pockets. Stay aware of your surroundings and avoid distractions like looking at your phone.

Be cautious of strangers approaching with offers or distractions. Use anti-theft accessories to secure your belongings. Staying alert helps you avoid becoming an easy target.

Respect Local Customs and Laws


Understanding and respecting local customs and laws is essential. Dress appropriately and adhere to cultural norms to avoid offending locals. Learn basic phrases in the local language to show respect. Research local laws, especially those regarding behavior, photography, and dress.

Being respectful can foster positive interactions and keep you out of trouble. Awareness and respect for local customs enhance your travel experience.

Follow Flight Safety Instructions


Pay close attention to the flight safety briefing at the start of your journey. Follow instructions for wearing your seatbelt at all times when seated. Understand the location and operation of emergency exits. Familiarize yourself with the use of oxygen masks and life vests.

Keep your seatbelt fastened during turbulence. Following flight safety instructions ensures a safer and more comfortable flight experience.