While I was abroad, I traveled alone quite often and while it never made me nervous, I can understand why others would be hesitant to travel alone, especially as a young woman. Here are some of my tips for my female peers with itchy feet:
First of all, just do it. Don’t be intimidated to travel alone because it can be a wonderful experience. Read up on my positives and negatives of traveling alone here.
Now that the hard part of making the decision to actually do it is over, be prepared on your travels. Do your best to know where you’re going and what you want to do. If you get lost, ask someone in a shop for directions rather than clumsily unfolding a map in the street.
If you’re concerned for your safety, take a buddy. Surely, there are other solo travelers in your hostel that would feel safe with someone else, too.
If you can’t find anyone to travel with but really don’t want to travel alone, consider student travel sites like EF College Break.
Research the area you will be in for places to avoid or ask someone who works at your hostel for a more local, up-to-date report.
Bring along a secure purse or money belt to prevent theft. I prefer bringing a cross-body bag as it’s close to my person, zips shut and is quite spacious. Leave the totes at home as they can easily be reached into.
Finally, trust your instincts. If a place or person approaching you looks dodgy, avoid the situation, don’t be afraid of coming off as rude if you believe you are in danger.
Otherwise, don’t be afraid as I like believe people are generally good and most people will be eager to help you if you’re in trouble or spark up a conversation.
Happy trails and be safe!