8 Tips for Solo Travelers

– Keep it in front of
you, and that looks goofy and whatever, but you’re
going to make sure that you don’t lose all your stuff. Hi everybody, my name is Shayla, and I do these videos every Wednesday. I have been traveling
full time since 2015, and I make these videos
every week to inspire you and encourage you to start
creating a life that you want instead of just falling into one. This week I’m in Athens, Greece and I am volunteering with refugees. I have extended my trip and
I have been getting a lot of messages asking about
how I’m traveling by myself. I wanted to address the
single female travelers and give you some advice that I’ve learned from traveling for the past two years. So tip number one is download Google Maps. Google Maps, or Maps.me,
which I haven’t used, essentially it’s a way for
you to get maps offline, because even if you don’t have service, your phone still knows where you are. In Cuba we could pin the house,
and that way when we want to the beach, we’d know
exactly how to get back. It’s also really nice
when you’re in a taxi, you can put in your home
and you know that the taxi’s bringing you to your home
and not to another place. The other thing is you
can put your earbuds in. So here in Greece I walk
to the community centers that I volunteer in, and
so I’ll be just walking down the road, listening to
my audiobook or my podcast, and I have maps on, and it’ll
tell me, take your left, so then I know to take a left,
and I don’t have to be that, oh, what’s going on? Then you become a target,
this girl has no idea where she is, so if you act like you know where you’re going, fake
it until you make it and get there, if you’re
not sure, then act like you know where you’re going
until you could hop into a cafe or somewhere that
you can look at your phone. So building on that, tip number two is, don’t make yourself a target. There’s so many things that
you do that you might not realize, so having your
phone out like this, (mumbles) snatch, it’s gone, it’s gone. Take that picture and then put it back. Your camera is also another big thing. In Nicaragua, a photographer
taught me to put duct tape over, mine says
Sony, so I put duct tape over Sony, and on the strap a little bit, jus to make it look a little more worn, it’s not like, oh my gosh, this brand new, awesome camera, it kind of looks like it’s been in your backpack for a while. Also, jewelry, a lot of my
friends are getting engaged, because it’s that time,
when we used to go to Mexico my mom would always buy
a fake wedding ring, so if anybody wants to rob
you, it’s a no-brainer, please take this target
ring, get it away from me. The next thing is your purse. So my purse, let me go get it. You want a purse that can go across body, you don’t want to have
your purse on your shoulder like this, you want it
to go all the way across, across your body like this. Keep it in front, not back on your hip. The other thing that’s
super handy, which I didn’t even realize when I bought this purse, it can also be a clutch,
or you could put your hand through it and just
hang on to it as you’re strolling through the market. Because what’s happening is
people are taking scissors, cutting this, and then
they take your purse, and it’s gone. Your backpack is another thing. So, let me grab that. Depending on where you
were I would not recommend wearing an outfit like
this, but since it’s what I’m wearing, I’m going to show you. Wearing your backpack
like this, on somewhere like the metro, not ideal,
because you can’t see what’s going on back here. Whenever I get on the
metro, I throw it on front like this, and just chill with it. And that looks goofy
and whatever, but you’re going to make sure that you
don’t lose all your stuff. See all these really handy compartments that make accessing
your stuff really easy, don’t put your (beep) there. You can see there’s
another pocket in here, put things in there so
that it’s easy for you to find but not easy for people to take. And when you walk around, walk around with a purpose, don’t walk
around with your phone like, ah, I don’t, what? Walk with a purpose, like
you know exactly where you’re going, you’ve done this
a thousand times before. Tip number three is where
to put important things. Passport; in Spain, my best friend Laura lost her passport, take
pictures of the passport, either have it on your
phone, or I print out hard copies, so if I do lose my passport it makes the process of getting a new one really, really easy. When we want to Cuba, they
don’t take your credit cards, and we weren’t sure
about the ATMs, so we had a lot of money. Some in my purse, in my makeup bag, in my electronics. If somebody stole my
purse, I wasn’t completely out of money. Tip number four, a lot of
people, women specifically, when they travel, are really
nervous about where to stay. I would hands down recommend a hostel. And people are freaked out about hostels because that stupid movie. A lot for times, for women,
they have women only dorms, or co-ed dorms, so you can decide. And people think that it’s dangerous, being with all those
people, but I feel like it’s more eyes and more
people that can help you. If some guy’s trying to
approach you in the hostel, getting too close, you can say something and there’s a lot of
other people in the room that will help you. So when you go and you
meet people, a lot of times you’ll go out, so tip number
five is don’t drink too much. Don’t go out and be like,
alright, we’re going to get hammered, I’m in Amsterdam,
I’m going to try all the drugs that I’ve never tried before. This is not the place. You want to have fun, and
you want to socialize, drinking beer is better
than drinking cocktails because you can see them open the bottle and you know that nothing
is getting inside of it, people don’t know you,
people are not making sure that you make it home
okay, you need to make sure that you are on your game,
and that I think is where a lot of people get in trouble. Tip number six is pack light. You are traveling by
yourself, you want to be independent, you don’t
want to need someone else to have to carry your bags. I pack with this thing. This is my bag, and I
love these backpacking backpacks, it has this
really nice hip strap, but you can see it’s
not even on my shoulder, so it’s all on my hips, and this keeps it so it doesn’t hurt your back too much, but you want to make sure
that when this is on, everything is really
tight, so this is nice and tight onto, it should just be like an extension of your body. And then you could have this on the front. I love this combination. And I try and pack with
this inside because inevitably, sometimes you end up with more than you go with, souvenirs
and different things. Again, you do not want to
be the damsel in distress who’s on the airplane and
can’t get her bag down because it’s too heavy,
you want to be super independent, get your stuff. For not knowing what to pack,
you pack enough for one week. And then, you meet lots of friends so that you can wear the same
outfit two nights in a row with two different groups of people. I really love this outfit,
and I went out with a different group last night than
I’m going out with tonight, I’m wearing the same outfit. It’s really that simple. I do that while I’m
traveling, I do that at home. Even for these videos
I have to think about a new outfit to wear because I don’t have that many clothes. Number seven, I am a
backpacker, I am very frugal, I’m very cheap, and one thing
that I do pay for is safety. When we were in Thailand
we had a late night flight that came into Bangkok,
but Bangkok’s not really that safe of a place, especially at night, so we paid the extra
money to ensure safety. We asked the hotel to send a taxi for us, and I think that you
should never skimp on that. Even here in Greece,
when I go out at night, the walk to the metro, all the time, it’s like a 20 minute walk,
but at 11 o’clock at night, I wasn’t so sure, and I
wasn’t willing to risk it for five dollars, so I
definitely called a cab and had them bring me. Last thing, there is
a Facebook page called Girls Love Traveling, it’s
growing at a crazy rate, but it’s a really good way
to find out information about your place, you
can either ask a question or you can just search; I’m going to wait for this plane to go over. Or you can just search, like I have a, do I have a layover? Yeah, I have a like a 12
hour layover in Denmark on my way home, I can go
in there and type Denmark and see what other
people have talked about. It’s a really great
way to plan your trips. Do not be afraid to
travel solo as a female, just be smart about it,
that’s it, just be smart. I have learned these tips the hard way. I really hope that this was helpful, if you know somebody whose
going to be traveling solo and you think these tips could help, please share it with them. If you found this helpful,
please like and subscribe, and I’ll talk to you all
next week, (smooching).

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