Something has been bothering me for a while. As I sit on my cozy couch in Florida, counting down the days until I get to hit the unpause button and resume my life, I find myself perusing various travel blogs and travel sites in general. I’ve got to find some way to fill the time.
But I keep coming across these articles all focused around the same topic: solo female travel. I see no articles on solo male travel, so why is there so much attention paid to a woman traveling alone? I feel that there is a fear being spread, but the ones who are perpetuating this fear are the females themselves. Females advising other females on what precautions to take on the road. Women telling other women how to keep themselves safe. Girls telling girls you can do it, BUT…
Don’t get me wrong, there are certain things every solo traveler should know. You don’t always have someone else by your side to watch each other’s backs. Of course every solo traveler must keep in mind many things that pairs or groups can feel free to ignore, or pay little attention to. But this is for EVERY solo traveler, not just us women.
Ladies, I’d like to tell you some things:
- Most people have no desire to rape you. And if they do want to rape you, they probably still won’t.
- You are strong. And I think we can be pretty certain that even a weak woman would become the Hulk when fighting for her life.
- Instincts are important, but this applies to both women and men. Trust your instincts. Don’t get into a car or situation that you feel uncomfortable getting into. Get out of a car or situation you feel uncomfortable in. It doesn’t matter what gender you are.
- If you are a pretty girl, men will hit on you. So sue them! Don’t tell me you wouldn’t flirt with some guy you find ridiculously attractive. Once again, just ‘cause a guy might make some remarks that are mildly creepy, does not mean they are going to jump you. They’re just hoping you might jump them.
- Men also get hit on by other men (or women!), and sometimes even get asked for sexual favors. It happens. This is not something unique that happens only to women.
- I think we can all agree in this day in age that women are not second to men. We are just as strong, both physically and mentally. Okay, so maybe a lot of men can overpower our flimsy biceps (although I have a friend who’s a black belt, and another one who can lift her own bodyweight, and they’re both teeny tiny things!), but we’re clever, and we sure can yell loudly if we want to. We are all powerful creatures – both men and women.
Ladies, we can vote, we can be political leaders, we can be CEOs of corporations, and we can most certainly travel the world all by ourselves, without any men to help us out. There are no added precautions to being a female solo traveler.
To be a solo traveler, of any gender, you need one single thing: TO LISTEN TO YOUR GUT.
That’s it. So stop pretending you’re a second rate creature. Ignore all those travel articles geared at women. You are a human, and you have the power to do whatever you desire without anyone by your side to protect you. You are your best protector.