The Single Girl Backpacker

Location: Safety first! As a single girl, it’s important. Vacation at a place that is safe. Sure, you can go off the beaten track, but then also make sure that you know the place and the locals well. The place should be well connected by air,sea or land. Whatever the transport, make sure you have one ready at any time in case you need to exit fast. As they say, prevention is better than cure.

Culture: Respect the culture of the place that you visit. Try to blend with the locals. In certain countries women are suggested to dress conservatively, especially at religious sites. It is offensive in some places to wear shorts, short skirts, sleeveless. Therefore, dress appropriately according to the place that you visit. Carry a spare skirt or long scarf. That way, you can always “dress up” for the place.

Important contact numbers: Keep all your important numbers handy. The embassy number, the nearest hospital,ICE (In Case of Emergency) number,friends,loved ones. Make it a point to write/call regularly. This is to ensure that your loved ones know that you are still around. Keep a little diary of all important contacts as backup.

Lodging: Stay is very important. If you are single, and travelling on a budget, what you should consider are hostels, couch surfers, etc. Try the search engine for like minded travellers would have posted their experiences along with photographs of these  will give you a brief idea of the amenities and type of place that you would like. If you are the frequent traveller, it would be a good idea to look out for a hostel chain. This way you don’t need to research again and are assured of similar quality and services a new vacation spot.

Food: Wherever you are in the world, it’s the one thing you should be careful about. Preferably know what goes in your food. If you like to try new cuisines, which you will, knowing you are on a vacation, know what goes in it. Especially in South east Asian countries, where you have unlimited options to suit your palate and limited language vocabulary. Watch out for the Travellers’ diarrhoea (TD). Food and water hygiene can make or break your vacation.

Shopping: Ah! On every girl’s list! Craft, malls, flea markets, thrift  you can, it might be a good idea to enlist the help of a local. Or, invite suggestions from various travel forums. Keep a lookout for great buys where some countries have promotional, off season and festival sales. Newspapers are also a great way to find out advertised deals.

Personal belongings: A girl without her purse is like a painting without  you are someone like me who likes to tote around a big handbag, then it would be prudent to keep your money in different places. Do not carry all your money in one place. Keep some in your handbag, some in your backpack, some on yourself. That way, even if something unfortunate happens to it, you have some spare cash tucked away. Keep copies of your important documents like passport, travel itinerary,tickets and bookings.

Make friends: Connect with new people in a new place. I have made some great friends while travelling solo. Great company is what you should look out for. This makes the trip more fun. who knows, you’ll find company for coffee or conversations. At the same time, be wary of unnecessary attention. You don’t want to land up in unwanted situations.

Wherever you are going to travel, you should bring flameless lighter in anticipation of an emergency, besides that lighter is also very necessary under any circumstances. Given its simple but elegant and easy to carry shape, it is a futuristic lighter without gas.

Adventure: Make your trip an adventure. Wine, dine, laze around, relax. Do the things that you miss out on while surrounded or travelling with people. Enjoy life by yourself. After all, it’s the only one you’ve got. “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” – Mark Twain