Solo Travel for Women/Are We Just Asking For It?

It’s a holiday weekend, and I am in the thick of planning my next solo travel adventure.


One thing I enjoy doing is making a friend or two in each place I visit. I keep in touch with them, and make a point of finding them in another part of the world later. So dear Australia, thank you for providing so many of your people that I have befriended. I hope to reunite with them in October!

I’m re-running my post about women traveling alone. If you haven’t already, feel free to buy A Girls Guide to Travelling Alone by Gemma Thompson on Amazon or on Itunes. I contributed one of the stories.

Have a relaxing week.


Recently, I enjoyed catching up with a friend who is back from several months of traveling overseas alone. I so admire women who stop waiting for someone to travel with and just do it. I asked her the usual:

    • Where’d you stay?
    • How did you stay on budget?
    • What did you pack?

She mentioned she brought the Morning After pill with her.Oh, I thought to myself. It never dawned on me to be that open socially that birth control would be necessary.“In case I got raped,” she then told me.My mouth fell open. She shrugged. “Just being practical.”I get it. I even admire it. But how awful that she should even have to think about it.

It made me wonder. How often do we women edit our lives choices due to the threat of male violence against us?

Be it work/career choices, how and when we exercise, and if and how we travel, are we living as free, emancipated citizens?

I notice the tone I get when I tell someone I’ll be traveling overseas alone again soon. It’s the same one as when I put on my boots at work and go for a walk on lunch hour in the dark. And since I live in Alaska, that’s pretty much all of the lunch hours I have in winter time.

That tone implies to me that if I am raped or assaulted while on a walk alone or traveling the globe, I will be a co-defendant in my own victimization.

That’s nuts.

Do you remember last February when Sarai Sierra, an American woman was murdered while traveling alone in Turkey?

The controversy sparked a storm of opinion about when and where it’s okay for a single woman to travel.

No controversy about worldwide violence against women. We’ve come to expect that.

I think Jodi Ettenberg at Legal Nomads said it best.

“US citizens die at home and, less frequently, they die in foreign countries. Stating that Sarai was murdered because she was abroad, as many comments have done, detracts from the real concern: that of violence against women worldwide.”

As an American woman, where am I most likely to be injured? Is it Turkey? Morocco? Mexico?

No, sadly. It’s in America. At home. With a loved one of my own choosing. One out of every four women in the US, and one in three women globally have been victims of domestic violence.

Women, are you interested in safely traveling alone?

Check out safety tips at Legal Nomads or Destination Unknown

 

Is your greatest safety risk in your interpersonal relationship with your partner? 

Call 1-800-SAFE for help. Let’s do everything we can to impact change so that our own daughters can live and move about freely and safely, wherever they choose. Please Like my Author page on Facebook! 

4 thoughts on “Solo Travel for Women/Are We Just Asking For It?

  1. What a paradox! Planning a ‘vacation’ and having to address the risk of being a target of violence. To be a woman is to be a target. This makes me angry.

    Pandora’s Box: “To do something that causes a lot of new problems that you did not expect.”

    To rethink vacation plans to include the risk of being raped or murdered, may be a reality, (a really sour one) but it must not be a stopper. I say go for it! Not forgo it.

  2. Terrific post!
    I spent two years traveling on my own off and on, but it was a long time ago, (when I was young, lol), It’s sad that this is the kind of thing women need to think about when planning to travel. solo or not, safety measures need to be taken into consideration though I hope never to the degree that it stops someone from the experience of traveling.

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