Once again the world is in shock over the pointless deaths of people involved in a terrorist attack. The latest event happened in Sri Lanka over the weekend. More than 250 people are reported to have lost their lives in this tragedy that targeted churches and hotels. Once again the world is mourning and many of us left wondering how can something like this happen. Why are people so awful to each other? How can people purposely take the lives of others in such a dreadful manner? Why is there so much hate towards others who are different from us? Why can’t we live peacefully? I just don’t understand and am saddened by the current state of the world.
Keeping safe as a solo traveller
As a solo female traveller, I’ve been to a number of places considered as being a higher risk for travel than others. In many countries a higher level of alert also means a higher level of security. In Istanbul I was surprised when my taxi was bomb checked before entering the grounds of my hotel. In Paris, you’ll see armed personnel everywhere you go. The recent terrorist attack in Christchurch New Zealand, highlighted that no place is really immune to attack. Travelling alone has given me the skills to sense trouble, to make sure I portray a sense of confidence, to be aware of my surroundings and to not put myself into situations that would be dangerous even at home. I do know however, that although I can’t guarantee my own safety, that there are many things I can do to make sure I don’t purposely put myself in harms way. You can read my tips to keep yourself safe here.
On my last trip to Paris, although I’d always wanted to experience the Bastille celebrations, I purposely took off to Rome the day before so not to be in France for Bastille. Terrorists often attack on nationally significant days. Whilst in Rome I learned of the Nice attack. Use your intuition, it’s there for a reason.
Check your country’s alerts
#travel update: Travel advisories are advising against travel to Sri Lanka due to the high risk of terrorist activity
Most countries have services to warn their citizens of travel dangers in certain countries. In Australia we have Smart Traveller. These websites/services give you information on areas to avoid, places where they advise you not to go and information on how to register your travel just in case you do get into trouble. Make use of them.
Just in case
When your out and about on your solo travels make sure you have a copy of your passport, drivers licence or identification, and your travel insurance certificate with you at all times. Make sure you are fully insured before you go. Let people at home know where you’ll be and where you are staying. Keep away from demonstrations and protests. Do not enter war zones.
If something happens when you’re away
If something happens near where you’re staying let people at home know you’re safe if you can. Mark yourself safe on Facebook. Make sure you take advice from local authorities and stay away from incidents. If you’re country advises you to leave, do so.
I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again, I am not frightened of the world. The majority of people are good and many countries rely on tourism for their economies. Even though at times the world seems messed up, if you are sensible you can still keep yourself as safe as possible.
My thoughts are with our brothers and sisters in Sri Lanka.