4. Study up on your destination
Be aware of safety concerns as well as of local customs and etiquette, especially with regard to dress. When in doubt, opt for conservative. Women travelers should know in advance if harassment is an issue — and both men and women should get the safety lowdown on public transportation. Talk to locals about neighborhoods to avoid, especially after dark. Know the local number to call for emergencies.
5. Ensure that your lodgings are safe
Keep your door locked, with the security chain fastened. Try to snag a room close to where the action is — near the concierge desk, say, or near elevators. Stay away from ground floors where window entry is possible. Don't answer the door if you're not expecting anyone.
6. Stay healthy
Is the water safe to drink? Are poisonous snakes or spiders a problem? Are mosquitoes a health issue? Does your dive operator have a stellar safety record? Bring an extra supply of prescription medications and an extra script (with the generic drug name rather than the brand name). And don't forget hand sanitizer.
7. Keep your wits about you
Traveling alone doesn't mean cowering in a hotel room. Venturing into unknown territory is one of the thrills of travel. But don't let yourself get so distracted by sights and sounds (or recording every moment on camera or cellphone) that you let your guard down. Of all the travel-alone safety tips, this is the most important: Don't leave common sense at home.
Published September 5, 2012
Also of Interest
- Why those extra 10 pounds might be GOOD for you
- What you need to know about hotel room safety
- Match your interests with AARP volunteer opportunities
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