15 Solo Female Travel Tips from an Experienced Solo Traveler

Author of the post in a green dress and sunglasses stands by a weathered wall, reaching up to touch blooming pink flowers hanging above her.

Thinking about solo female travel but still aren’t sure if it’s the right thing for you? I totally get you, gal! I’ve been there, done that (and I’ve got loads of solo female travel tips to share)!

Traveling alone often seems lonely and intimidating, but once you plunge into it, it’s actually the most liberating activity you can do for yourself!

I’ve taken 50+ flights and visited many countries all by myself, and as an experienced solo female adventurer, I have some must-read advice to share with you.

To make this an easy read and ensure you find what you’re looking for right away, I divided the tips into categories (from planning, safety, making friends, and more).

P.S. Stay tuned to learn how one solo female trip I took actually led to me meeting my husband!

Planning solo trips for women, from a personal experience

Author of the post with long brown hair is taking a photo of a white statue with a camera, in an outdoor setting with greenery and a grand building in the background.

I visited over 30 countries on 3 continents, and one aspect of travel I love most when solo traveling is planning. After having been on dozens of trips with my husband, family, and friends, I must say that I actually find it much easier to plan my trips when I’m doing them alone. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I love my people, but they can be too demanding at times!

In fact, the larger the group, the more complicated the planning because everyone has a special thing they want to do or see, and you can never agree on accommodation.

So, in terms of planning, I promise you less hassle right from the start when it comes to solo travel for women!

Here are my top tips to make sure you get the most out of the process:

1. Plan ahead, but not every detail 

Hands typing on a laptop displaying a travel website; surrounding items include a camera, map, sunglasses, photos, a watch, and letters on a desk.

Too much planning and too little planning are equally bad, I’d say. After 15 years of active traveling, here are things I always plan or research before a trip:

  • Travel dates, if flexible, booking a ticket when dates are cheaper
  • Widely accepted payment methods in the destination country
  • Budget (read more in our blog post on how to save money when traveling)
  • How to get around in and around the target destination (public transport, metro, trains, etc.)
  • Accommodation, but only for the first few nights if I know I’ll move a lot during the trip
  • Weather for the desired travel dates
  • Public holidays in the target country during the time of the visit
  • Opening hours of attractions I want to visit

Here’s what I wouldn’t plan in detail but rather just get an overview of:

  • Detailed itinerary for every single day of the trip; I love to leave room for spontaneity as most of the time on solo trips, the plans can change (you meet someone and decide to do things together, you want an extra day for an attraction, or the planned attraction is closed, weather is horrible, etc.).
  • Tours that are widely available (I do book tours that sell out quickly or are only available at particular times).
  • Restaurants or places to eat, unless you have allergies and need to be careful about where you eat. In this case, make sure to find places that can accommodate your needs.

Why planning too much is bad

Author of the post in a white dress and orange backpack smiles while walking on a sunny path, wearing a pink cap and sunglasses with greenery in the background.

When I try to plan every single hour of my solo journeys, I find it rather exhausting, and I get overstimulated after a few hours of planning. I remember losing all interest in visiting the city when planning what I would do during my 8-hour layover in Bergamo, Italy.

Everything was super close, and I wanted to see a nearby lake, visit the important churches, have the best pasta, and climb the medieval fortress. Because, you know, I’m only here now, and I have 8 hours to see it all. When else am I going to see these attractions?

And that’s when anxiety and overstimulation start to kick in.

In the end, I did only 2 out of 4 things I wanted and I still had an awesome time, so all the stressing about it before was useless.

Why not planning is bad

Author of the post stands in a sunlit plaza with scattered pigeons and people walking by. Buildings and trees are visible in the background.

But then, when I don’t plan at all, I land in a country during its national holiday when nothing is open, the public transport is delayed, and I have to make it to an important conference straight from the airport (true story; it happened to me in Thessaloniki, Greece, in 2016).

Or that time when I took a train from Paris to a faraway city in France to see a 14th-century castle, only to discover it was closed for renovation.

These were my early years of travel, and I wasn’t aware of the type of information I needed to research and things to plan ahead to avoid these situations. That’s why the list I shared above will help you keep your trip planning simple, functional, and not overstimulating!

Things to do before the solo female trip

Now, once you’ve sorted out the accommodation and travel dates and done most of the research about the destination country, you can start preparing your stuff!

2. Pack light

A person in a hat and floral dress rides an escalator in a modern, glass-ceilinged building, carrying a suitcase and wearing a brown backpack.

I never understood my female friends who’d pack a giant suitcase for a weekend trip. My friend who was visiting me one time actually showed up with a 2-week worth of suitcase (according to my standards) when she was only staying for 1 weekend!

I’ll never forget the sight of that 0.5-liter Nivea body cream among her toiletries. Seriously, how much of it do you think she actually used in 48 hours?

One thing I hate when traveling is having to carry bulky bags and large suitcases. If I had a dollar for every time I broke a sweat climbing (non-escalator) stairs at airports carrying large suitcases with spare shoes, jackets, and hair products that I never ended up using…

Thankfully, I’ve learned from my mistakes (I had to make some multiple times) and can now proudly share a packing list of small hacks to make sure you don’t have to carry any extra weight during your solo female trip:

Person packing a suitcase on a bed, with various items laid out including a hat, clothes, headphones, a water bottle, a smartphone, and sunglasses.
  • Get airplane-friendly toiletry bottles and fill them with products you normally use at home.
  • If you’re traveling in summer, pack more light dresses (natural materials like linen or cotton are key for hot climates!) and fewer T-shirts and pants as the latter takes more space.
  • Pack clothes that are easy to mix and match. Think neutral colors like white, beige, or black.
  • Minimize your makeup. I only pack an SPF-tinted moisturizer and a hydrating lip balm, and it does wonders storage-wise!
  • Pack only 1 extra pair of shoes comfortable for walking.
  • Roll your clothes, don’t fold them. Once I figured out how to roll clothes effectively, I never went back to folding. It’s such a space-saver, plus it doesn’t wrinkle the clothes!
  • Invest in quality clothing suitable for the weather in your destination country. I remember always packing bulky sweaters made of synthetic materials when traveling during winter. They took a bunch of room and never kept me warm. At one point, I switched to more lightweight but expensive cotton, cashmere, or merino wool alternatives and ended up being warm + having more room in the luggage.

3. Get travel insurance

Two individuals paragliding over a lush green landscape with mountains in the background. One is holding a selfie stick taking a photo. Both are wearing helmets.

Honestly, I’m sometimes guilty of not buying travel insurance, and I have to say it somehow feels wrong not to buy it.

I was visiting my boyfriend, now husband, when we were in a long-distance relationship every other month, and after a while, I just stopped paying for insurance since nothing ever happened.

Of course, the first time I didn’t buy insurance, I got sick with Covid. Luckily, his country’s health care system was super tourist-friendly, and I got all the medications and doctor visits dealt with for free, but this is really an exception. I was lucky to avoid paying hefty sums for my treatment.

The point is, you never know when you can catch a bad virus, step on a nail, or suffer an injury, and you don’t want to risk it. Always get travel insurance, especially as a solo female traveler, since you’ll always have someone to call if you need help!

4. Make copies of important documents

A close-up of a U.S. passport with various travel documents and a boarding pass partially visible on a wooden surface.

This one is super important, as it can save you so much headache if you lose your passport or ID card in a foreign country! Plus, some countries may actually require you to have a printed copy of your passport or visa with you.

BONUS TIP: As a frequent traveler, I keep a separate folder in my phone gallery with important documents. I’ll save photos and email screenshots with travel insurance policies, my passport, hotel reservations, and everything I’ll need for the trip that I want easy access to.

5. Download navigation maps on your phone

A smartphone displaying the Google Maps app icon rests on an unfolded world map.

Downloading an offline map for my next destination as a solo traveler is a real lifesaver, and I mostly think in terms of travel and time efficiency. I remember losing my nerves so many times when I commuted from the airport to the hotel, there’s no Wi-Fi, and I needed to find a bus station that would take me to my hotel.

Yeah, you can always ask people for guidance, but try doing that when you land in a small town in Turkey where almost no one speaks English!

With an offline navigation map, you avoid the stress by having the simplest route suggested to you even when you’re not connected. This YouTube Short by Google explains how to use Gmaps offline!

Solo female travel safety tips

Safety is likely your biggest concern when traveling solo as a woman, and I can totally see where that’s coming from. Here’s my top pick of safety travel tips to help you have more confidence and actually stay protected during your journey:

6. Share your location and plans with your family

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Keep your family informed about your whereabouts. You can create a family group on WhatsApp where you can share photos and plans with your close ones. That’s what I always do.

It definitely gives you peace of mind, especially when traveling in remote areas where there’s no internet access or people around at all times.

Getting an eSIM from providers like Airalo is a great way to ensure an internet connection from the moment you reach your destination.

I just recently read the news of a young couple who got lost in a forest in Serbia, and the search for them lasted for 2 days. They haven’t informed their families or friends that they planned to go that deep into the woods, making the search much harder. Luckily, the story had a happy ending!

7. Use common sense

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I always mix common sense with intuition, and it turns out to be the best combination.

For example, if you’re walking alone at night, don’t go to secluded places. Avoid streets that have poor lighting and no people on them. If your surroundings make you feel uncomfortable, it’s a good enough sign to take a turn.

8. Keep your valuables hidden

Person photographing a building while a small dog peeks out of the backpack on their back. The building has an ornate wooden door and stone steps leading up to it.

Never carry your jewelry (except for maybe a wedding ring, real or pretend), gadgets, and cash all in one place, and never keep them exposed. This is especially important when traveling to places with a high crime rate, like Venezuela, South Africa, or Papua New Guinea.

Make sure you protect your personal belongings at all times, especially if you choose to stay in a hostel. One time, I forgot to lock the locker in my hostel room before going out, and when I got back, I was missing a €100 bill.

9. Avoid unwanted attention

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Be aware that local rules and customs of your destination may be different from the ones you’re used to. If you’re visiting a religious country and you read online that women should be covered when visiting mosques or churches, that’s exactly what you should do.

Before my trip to Jordan, I was told, even by locals, that it’s totally okay to walk the streets of Amman (and even smaller cities) and have your legs or arms showing. What they didn’t tell me was that the locals, especially men, can give you such stares that you’ll instantly want to enter a store and buy yourself something to cover up.

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Making friends abroad when traveling solo

Four hikers standing on a rock ledge, overlooking a scenic valley, with two raising arms in celebration. It is sunny, and they are wearing backpacks.

One of my biggest concerns when I first started traveling alone is precisely that – being alone. Now, I don’t know where you’re coming from, maybe you need a solo trip to relax from the outside pressure and just want a break from socializing, and in that case you can skip this section.

But if you’re embarking on a solo journey as a woman but feel insecure about being seen alone, eating alone, or just feeling lonely, these are the tips for you:

10. Book a stay in sociable hostels

A hotel receptionist in a suit smiles while passing a document to a guest across the front desk.

Booking your accommodation wisely can make a huge difference in how sociable your trip will be! Most big cities have hostels that specialize in socializing and organizing tours.

Staying in a hostel as a solo female traveler, believe it or not, led me to meeting my husband!

I went to Greece alone to attend this conference, and I booked a room in a 6-bed female dorm room. As it turned out, one of my roommates was also attending the conference.

We hung out together all the time and had so much fun meeting people from different countries who could speak our native languages (mine is Serbian, hers Greek).

On the last day of the conference, she introduced me to this random guy she met who also spoke Serbian, and we engaged in a conversation. We instantly clicked and started dating a few months later, and then 4 years down the long-distance-relationship road, we got married and now finally live together!

So staying in hostels and making friends there always brings back good memories, and I could never recommend it enough for solo travelers!

11. Connect with other solo travelers

A person wearing a hat and orange outfit sits on the sand near palm trees, using a laptop near the beach under a cloudy sky.

Even if you don’t stay in a hostel, you can still connect with fellow solo female travelers. There’s this cool app you can try called Meetup (available for iOS and Android), where you can connect with people near you and get matched with those who share the same interests.

You can also explore online communities of expats, like Facebook groups, where other solo female travelers and people who live abroad share new meeting opportunities.

I was so lucky to find one Facebook group with expats in Tel Aviv (this is where I currently live) because it has made it possible for me to attend many fun events and meet fellow Serbs who also live in Israel!

One time, we met to watch a basketball game, and among us were a few solo travelers who heard about the get-together in the group and decided to join. So, as you can see, it’s always good to check online communities!

12. Go on organized tours

A tour guide gestures while talking to two people in front of the Palace of Westminster and Big Ben in London.

Probably my favorite way to connect with fellow solo travelers is to attend organized tours. Whether it’s a free walking tour organized by a hostel or a cool GetYourGuide day trip, I always make new friends at these types of events.

The best part is that you can choose a type of activity that best matches your interests or hobbies, like hiking, bar crawling, museum visits, or just go with simple sightseeing tours.

This conference I talked about earlier that I attended was a large get-together event for polyglots, people who love and can speak many foreign languages. I went there alone some 8 years ago, and I still keep in touch with many people I met there because we have so many things in common. Plus, pretty much everyone came to the event alone, so socializing with new people came naturally.

Making the most of your solo female trip

Finally, I want to share some more tips that’ll help you enjoy your solo trip to the fullest!

13. Immerse yourself in the local culture

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Whether you’re traveling for a few days only or planning a longer stay, there’s no better way to explore your new surroundings than to immerse yourself in the local culture.

  • Learn a few basic words in the language spoken in your destination country. You know what they say: when you speak to a person in their native language, you speak to their soul.
  • Buy food from local street food vendors or eat in traditional restaurants. I always pick small restaurants because you get a more intimate atmosphere and the opportunity to talk to the staff about local dishes and cuisine.
  • Attend concerts or exhibitions to explore the local art and music scene.
  • Book accommodation with a local! Staying at a local’s house is a win-win situation because you’ll get to experience the culture to the fullest while always having someone to eat and explore the city with!

14. Keep up with your fitness and health routine

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If you have a strict fitness and wellness routine, going on a solo trip doesn’t have to mean completely giving up on it!

  • Pack the essentials like a jump rope or comfortable clothes in which you can work out.
  • Stay hydrated by always carrying a water bottle with you. I recently started drinking electrolytes on my travels, and they’ve been doing wonders for staying fresh and avoiding dehydration!
  • Switch to bodyweight exercises as they require zero equipment. You can find tons of YouTube 10-minute or 20-minute workouts you can do in the morning before you hit the streets!
  • Walk whenever possible. I always walk to places and only use public transportation if getting there takes too long or the route isn’t walking-friendly. You’ll reach those 10,000 steps per day in no time!

15. Embrace the freedom of solo travel

A person with a hat and red backpack sits on a stone wall, facing a large lake surrounded by mountains, with arms outstretched.

Many women I know were discouraged from solo trips because they had that “WTF am I doing” moment in their heads.

At first, it can really feel weird hitting the road alone, but I promise the negative mindset goes away after 1 or 2 days! As I mentioned in the beginning, solo travel feels extremely liberating, shows you how independent you are, and allows you to rediscover yourself!

We’re often constrained by our work schedule, obligations, and surroundings to act in a certain way. A solo trip is your opportunity to just be yourself and enrich your spirit with new experiences!

As you’re on the road, try to journal, meditate, and just marvel at the world around you at your own pace, and you’ll get to really feel free and inspired to do big things!

FAQs for solo female travelers

A person sitting on the ground against a bright yellow and orange wall, taking a selfie with a smartphone. A turquoise suitcase is positioned next to them.

☔ How do you protect yourself as a woman traveling alone?

As a single woman traveling, always share your travel plans with friends and family, keep your valuables hidden, use common sense, and maybe even learn a few self-defense moves. 

🗺️ Where is the best place to travel solo for females?

In general, countries with lower crime rates are best for solo female travelers. I had a lot of fun in Europe, but Japan, Singapore, and New Zealand also seem to be popular for solo women travelers. Read our special article on this topic here.

🦸‍♀️ How to travel alone as a woman for the first time?

Stay confident, use common sense, and engage in the local community. You can stay in sociable hostels or with a local, so you’ll feel safer and less lonely. 

📅 How long should a solo trip be?

There’s no rule about how long a solo trip should be. Anywhere from a weekend to a month or two is pretty common. It really depends on the nature of your solo trip and what you want to see or do there. In this regard, I wouldn’t treat solo trips any differently from group trips.

🗒️ How do I prepare for solo travel?

Do intense research on the destination, including safety alerts, things to do, solo travel-friendly activities, and public transportation. Also, check online expat groups for your destination. 

🙅‍♀️ Is it awkward to travel alone?

Only to beginners. It’s normal to feel awkward when you’re first planning a solo trip, but traveling alone is now becoming a much more common activity. Plus, it gives you so many new opportunities for personal growth and meeting new people!

💡 How can I travel alone but not lonely?

Immerse in the local community, go on organized tours, meet with locals using online groups, and stay in hostels. Don’t be afraid to get out of your comfort zone and be the first one to engage in a conversation!

Final thoughts on solo female travel tips

A woman with sunglasses on her head stands outdoors in a park during sunset, looking off into the distance. She is wearing a sleeveless black top with a pattern of small white shapes.

Well, that’s it! I’ve shared my best solo female travel tips that I gathered after being an active traveler for over 15 years. Hopefully, you found the inspiration and encouragement you were looking for, and are now ready to embark on a beautiful new adventure!

Traveling alone as a woman is much more common today than it was just 10 years ago, and there are plenty of possibilities to connect with locals, meet other women travelers, and make the most out of your visit!

I tried to include the most important things, but I’m sure there are other things worth mentioning. What tip from the article was the most helpful for you? Do you have any other tips you’d like to share with fellow female travelers? Drop us a comment below!

Stay adventurous,


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