The Dangers of Traveling Alone as a Woman

By Rina Weaver

On December 3, 2018, 36-year-old Carla Stefaniak’s body was discovered partially buried in a wooded area about 300 meters away from her resort in Costa Rica. Stefaniak, who was visiting Costa Rica for her 36th birthday, was killed by a security guard working at her resort. Stefaniak was stabbed seven times while defending herself from a sexually motivated attack. Recent headlines, including Carla Stefaniak’s, about violence and sometimes death subjected upon women have drawn awareness to the undying tendency of brutal acts committed against women across the world. Women face unique risks when traveling alone, however, this has not stopped the popularity of solo travel among women. In fact, travel statistics show that female solo travel has increased by 45% over the past couple of years. Despite the rising popularity of traveling alone as a woman, there is no clear picture of the scale of violence against female travelers, due to the lack of seriousness in many countries when it comes to acts of violence committed against women. This is why preparation is key when traveling alone. Here is a list of things you can do to keep yourself safe while traveling alone:

  1. Share your travel plans with trusted family and friends
  2. Make an emergency plan
  3. Avoid reckless behavior and use common sense
  4. Do research on places you are planning to visit
  5. Keep your valuables secure

Here is a list of the top ten safest countries for women to travel alone:

  1. Finland
  2. Canada
  3. Singapore
  4. Spain
  5. Switzerland
  6. Croatia
  7. Austria
  8. Iceland
  9. Germany
  10. Italy