Being lucky enough to travel to different parts of the globe and gain experiences that some can only dream of is a fortunate position to be in. When you are young, travelling alone is an adventure and you feel invincible, like nothing could ever go wrong when you go and find yourself. The thing to remember is that you are human, you are wide-eyed and excitable, but you are not invincible. The world may not be an unkind or dangerous place on its own, but leaving common sense at home and believing everyone you ever meet is nice is not smart.
Taking your time to do your research about safety before you travel means you are looking after yourself. You are taking a moment to remember that your wellbeing matters, and you need to visit places that make you realise that you can enjoy what the world has to offer you, without putting you in danger while you do it. You will be able to explore unique opportunities and tastes while on your travels, and you should be able to do that with utter confidence that you won’t encounter trouble. Trouble comes in different ways, from the wildlife you could encounter visiting Yellowstone National Park, to the harsh weather conditions up the Rocky Mountains while on a hike. Wherever you choose to go, you need to be aware of your surroundings at all times. Backpackers often don’t consider the safety aspect of travelling around and seeing the sights, the excitement generally clouds the judgement. So, when you decide to put together an itinerary and get your bag packed and ready to go, you need to keep in mind your own safety. We’ve got some tried and tested tips to avoid trouble on the road while you are jumping from place to place.
Before you go to a new place – whether you are planning to spend time hiking or diving or simple seeing the sites – you need to some thorough research. Find out the neighbourhoods to avoid, look up how to travel to the areas you want to see the most and check out the real reviews of the hostels and places to stay in the area. Local knowledge is important, as when you’re lugging around a giant backpack you need to know where you could be likely to get robbed. Avoiding those places is a smart decision. Off the beaten track is only fun if it’s safe!
Travelling can be very distracting. All you want to do is look around at everything and take it all in. being overwhelmed with all the excitement of new things to see and do can push concerns you may have of the area to the back of your mind. Never leave your handbag or wallet in sight or at your feet. When you eat in a new place, keep your money on your lap or in your hand at all times. Using a money wallet belt like this one is a smart plan to avoid being pickpocketed. Never leave a drink open on the table and unsupervised. Spiking is a scary prospect, and you need to be vigilant!
Share Your Plans.
It’s important to leave a copy of your itinerary with someone you trust back home, your hotel and a friend who may be travelling with you. If anything is going to change, you need to let someone know as it changes. Make sure you have the right insurance that covers all kinds of activities, and make sure you don’t carry all your cash with you at once. It’s important to let people know your movements so that if you go off the grid, you can still be traced.
When you go backpacking around the world, don’t go it alone. Sure, split up when you want to see different things, but bring someone with you so that you can have back-up at all times. You will meet a lot of people as you globetrot, and while it’s wonderfully social and nice to meet new people, having someone from home that you trust with you can make such a difference to the rest of your trip.
Backpacking isn’t something anyone walks into lightly. There is a lot of planning and mapping out involved. Make sure you plan effectively for your safety and don’t take any chances with it. You wouldn’t bungee jump without the right cord, would you? Treat backpacking like bungee jumping: it’s a thrill when it’s safe!