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Solo travellers

Solo travellers
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6 more tips for people travelling alone

Lone travelling is an incredibly satisfying experience, but you do need to take a bit of extra care with safety. Here are Canadian Travel Clinics’ top tips.

1.      Know yourself

You are the best expert on your own mental health and resilience, and the wonderful thing about solo travel is that you can tailor your trip to meet your needs. So book a few luxury nights if you need them. Join a group if you don’t fancy doing that hike alone.

2.      Make a plan

Research can make the difference between a mediocre experience and the trip of a lifetime. Choose the countries you will be visiting wisely. Check the Government of Canada’s travel advisories to learn more about the security situation in your chosen destinations. The advisories will also tell you about health risks, laws and etiquette. Talk your itinerary over with someone who has visited the area, too.

3.      Study a map

Having no idea about the lay of the land can stress even the most unflappable. Get a map of your destination and plan your route before you set out for the day. Write down the address of your accommodation – in the local alphabet if necessary. Ask for directions if you think you’re lost, and make a note of landmarks. It’s a good idea to get into the habit of turning round from time to time and looking back down the way you’ve just come. This will help you if you need to re-trace your steps.

4.      Manage your money

What’s the cheapest and safest way to change money? You will need to research this before you go otherwise you might get stung by charges. Talk with your bank to find out if they have any services for travellers. You may need to let them know you are travelling in any case so that your card does not get blocked. Don’t leave all your money in one place, and don’t assume it will be safe in your accommodation. A money belt is a good purchase, and don’t flash your cash or cards around.

5.      Sexual health

According to research, you’re up to three times more likely to catch a sexually transmitted infection as a result of unprotected sex during international travel. The exhilaration of solo travel can lead to risk-taking behaviours so pack a supply of condoms just in case. The Canadian Travel Clinics specialist nurses can provide all sorts of advice about travelling solo, including sexual health and sun safety when you get your travel vaccinations in Fort McMurray, Medicine Hat, Okotoks, Red Deer, Calgary or Edmonton.

6.      Experienced travellers say…

A quick informal poll of experienced travellers at Canadian Travel Clinics came up with these final tips:

  • research any known tourist scams in the area
  • stay sober unless you’re in trusted company
  • photocopy your travel documents
  • take a photo of your hotel’s address on your phone or camera – it could be useful if you get lost or if your camera gets lost; and it will be a useful record of where you have been, too