Seeing the majestic beauty of the UK firsthand can be an extremely enjoyable and memorable experience, but as with any other place on Earth, there are some risks involved. Check out the following five women’s travel safety tips if you’re planning on visiting the UK:
1. Keep Your Device Charged and Prepare a Plan of Action
Having access to a mobile device in times of distress is incredibly important in today’s world. With a fully charged device you have the comfort of knowing that you have contact with the outside world, regardless of the crazy predicament you’re in. The last thing you want is to be stranded or lost in an unknown area with no access to GPS or the internet – that magnifies the scariness of the experience by a factor of 10 instantly. In addition to having your device charged, you should also plan how you would call for help in an emergency (hint: there are plenty of apps that can help with this).
2. Know Your Emergency Numbers
If you ever need emergency police assistance in the UK, dial 999 or 112 from any phone. This is part of device preparation, as the first thing you’ll want to do upon arriving is activate a mobile phone that receives good reception from one of the UK’s top mobile carriers. As we hinted to above, there are also apps that can help you dial 911 and/or send out emergency messages to a select group of contacts with a couple of taps. Being able to call for help and summon the authorities quickly can be a huge difference maker in some situations.
3. Don’t Walk Alone at Night in Urban Areas
It goes without saying that unarmed women should not be walking by themselves at night, but this is especially true in some of the more urban areas of London. Become familiar with the city’s bad areas and try to steer clear of them if possible. If you’re not driving a rental vehicle, the best and most popular option is to catch a taxi or minicab rather than depend on public transportation. In any case, try to keep your travel adventures for the daytime.
4. Get a UK Driving Licence
If you decide on staying in the UK, or plan on visiting frequently, it might be a good idea to get a driving licence so that you can drive your own rental vehicle. Being inside your own locked car is typically safer than catching taxis on the street with drivers you’ve never met. While rare, there have been cases of women being assaulted by taxi drivers or while waiting outside by themselves for a taxi to arrive, so it would be ideal to drive yourself if you’re visiting the UK frequently. To get a licence in the UK you’ll need to pass a driving theory exam as well as a practical driving test.
5. Carry a First Aid Kit in Rural Areas
Just as it makes sense to be cautious of human-related threats in highly populated urban areas, it also makes sense to prepare for natural mishaps and accidents that can happen in rural areas where access to medical attention is not as immediate. Thus, if you’re planning on going to some of the more scenic and remote areas of Great Britain, be sure to bring a well-stocked first aid kit.
Stick to Your Own Rules
One of the ways travellers find themselves in compromising situations is because they often deviate from the original plan and opt for a more spontaneous route. If you set a safe plan and stick to it, you’ll be in a much better position to avoid unnecessary hassles along your journey.