Women Traveling Alone Should Enjoy Themselves
Traveling alone has many benefits. You get to eat in peace and quiet. You can “veg” out all night in your room and watch TV or read your favorite novel.
I have been traveling for business for 25 years and 90% of the time, I travel alone. Most of my work as a female professional speaker and corporate trainer takes me across the United States with little international travel (by choice).
While being on the road is tiring, stressful and can drive you crazy when you travel often for business, it can be exhilarating. I come across all kinds of interesting sights, people, places and great restaurants. I never know what might be around the next corner.
Women who don’t travel often will say to me, “Don’t you hate eating by yourself?” I tell them, “No.” I am quite used to it. As I said earlier, I enjoy my quiet time. I take my time and dine rather than gobble down something quick. I actually eat better on the road than when I am at home.
I love to watch people and observe them. It is amazing how many people do not take in their world, they are completed strapped to their phone or tablets. As I watch them I think about how much of life they are really missing when traveling.
If you are a female traveler, you have extra concerns that a male does not have—safety being #1 on the list.
Safety tips for female travelers:
- Try to arrive before it is dark, especially if you are going to a new city.
- Make sure you have all the phone numbers of contacts, nearby hospitals, and closest pharmacy where you can easily access them.
- If you are meeting people for dinner or dining alone, find out how you will get to the restaurant and what part of town is it located in. In some downtown areas, a woman should not walk by herself after dark (or even after 6:00) or should not go beyond certain streets.
- Always keep your wits about you. Don’t be so engrossed in reading e-mailing or texting that you are not paying attention to who is around you.
- I prefer to not have a room that is at the end of a long hallway.
- Hiring a town car is often better than taking a taxi and in several instances, only costs about $10 – $15 more than the taxi. You should check out your options. Even if it costs $30 or $40 more, it is often worth it because someone will greet you when you arrive, or meet you at baggage, assist with your bags, and safely get you to your destination. Their vehicles are very clean, comfy and you feel safe.
- As I said earlier, make sure all important telephone numbers are in one place and can be accessed in 30 seconds. I carry a hard-copy itinerary (that my executive assistant creates for every trip). I can quickly pull it out, and on the left side, I see the important phone numbers. You should always have a hard copy in case your phone dies on you or you leave it behind at an airport (as I did one time).
- Find out if the hotel has a women-only floor. This is becoming a trend and there are several hotels that cater to women travelers.
Bonus Tips for Women Business Travelers!
- Stay at hotels with Concierge floors. Added benefits, they offer cocktails and snacks every night and have nice breakfast foods in the morning. Most of them are like sitting in someone’s family room—cushy couches, chairs, TV and newspapers. You get to chat with other travelers. They usually have a computer and printer you can use for free.
- Check the forecasts for the days you will be in that location. This will help you with packing. You might need to bring a heavier coat, rain coat or umbrella. (I tend to forget about those extra things because I live in Las Vegas and rarely worry about an overcoat or umbrella.) However, the hotels and restaurants can be quite cold with air conditioning.
- Do you have friends in the area that you can visit while you are on business travel?
- Try to enjoy “you” time. Make the most of your quiet time. Maybe take in a movie or treat yourself to a massage.
- Bring comfortable walking shoes. You’ll want to get out of those heels and have fun exploring the area.
- Keep a packing check list. I have a check list of the big and small items I need to pack. I review the list before I close my suitcase. It is so easy to forget a charger of some sort of a toiletry.
- Bring some photos of family or your pets to place in your hotel room.
- Be sure to pack some comfy, lay-around clothes.
Remember to be safe when traveling. Do you have any additional tips or stories you can share to help other travelers? Please share in the comments section below.
If travel planning is a part of your job or you just want to know more about traveling and travel planning for your own personal knowledge, be sure to register for the upcoming webinar I am hosting with Lucy Brazier (Lucy traveled to more than 170 events in more than 20 countries in 2014 alone! Talk about an experienced traveler.)