Security measures for solo's
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I will be going on my first solo cruise in May (always cruised with the hubby-- he passed away a year ago). I am excited, but as time draws near I am getting a little nervous about security issues. What particular measures do you experienced solo travelers take that I may not be thinking of-- I always had the DH to watch my back. Thanks for any advise.I've only cruised solo once, but I travel solo very frequently for work and I don't think the "tips and tricks" for solo cruising are any different from solo work travel.
Basically, be aware of your surroundings, don't publicize your cabin number, use the safe in your room to store items, have a money belt and/or lanyard for credit card, room card, etc. especially when going onshore. Don't get drunk (unless you're in your cabin and going to stay there until you're sober again...but who wants to drink alone!) Don't go wandering off the beaten path by yourself in ports.
And don't worry! You're really just about as safe on your own as you are with a spouse along.
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I am not married, and have cruised many times solo the last five years or so. I used to scuba dive (don't do it anymore) and would set up my own dive trips in every port (mainly sailed the Caribbean). I never felt like I was in danger at any time, going out on my own, because I looked up and booked well known scuba shops from the internet. If you want to strike out on your own, do a little research on the internet. There is a site called TripAdvisor that is invaluable; it even has reviews of "things to do" in various cities, many of which will be on your port schedule.
My advice to you is to just take the same kind of precautions you would at home. Pay attention to your sixth sense; keep your money hidden and secure; stay in groups if you can.
The most important thing is, if anyone even begins to start to harrass you, smile and walk away. You'll be just fine.
In a group, one person can keep an eye on the carry-ons while the other fetches checked luggage. It is easier for bag snatchers when solo passengers lose line of sight to their bags.
Here's a thread on flyertalk for solo women travel tips
Thank you for the re-assurance that "I can do this." I just get to thinking about those times one of us would be lost and the other would know which way to go - or one of us would loose something important, but the other had a spare. You know--- We used to have a slogan "It takes two." Well - maybe it just takes one-- and a shipful of new friends.Jules, last year I traveled alone to Peru. I spent 2 weeks there alone and only once did I get lost and felt a little worried because I didn't have my tourist map. But it was a learning experience. I was being hard headed and wanted to find my hotel on my own because I knew I was close. After 30 minutes of walking in circles, asking a cop, and asking a local, I decided to take a taxi. Turns out I was 3 blocks away.
A few weeks ago I went on my first solo cruise and had a great time. When it comes to safety while traveling alone I can tell you that first thing everyone says is to use common sense. Don't wear flashy jewerly or clothing. The best bet is to research the port you are going and determine what you will be doing there that day. Are you going to the beach? Are you taking an excursion? Going shopping and walking? Then you can decide if will be better of in an excursion, need to take a taxi, walking on the street, or getting off the ship and walking on the beach.
If you are going to do your own thing at a port city, then research on google for a street map of what's close so you can see how to get back to the ship. If you get really lost grab a cab and only an official one.
If you want to be around people and meet others, then I would recommend doing an excursion. I did excursions at 3 of the 4 ports I went to and I had a great time with others. Again, maybe that's not what you want and want your piece and quiet. Then you could just do your own thing but that depends on what is there to do at the port you are visiting. Do your research. If you are concerned about being alone, then do an excursion.
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Hello, the one thing I did was going on cruise sponsored excursions ( I didn't want to be out by myself in unfamiliar places). I brought a mix of cash and travelers checks. Also, I did keep my passport with me on all times (you never know when you might need it).Just my 2˘, but I would not carry my passport ashore. There are pickpockets everywhere, and US passports are valuable. I make a photocopy of the passport and take that off the ship along with a photo ID like a driver's license, leaving the original passport in the cabin safe. I also make a photocopy of all photo ID and credit cards to leave in the safe if I take the originals off the ship. In the very unlikely event of your being stuck ashore needing your passport (medical emergency, etc.), the ship can retrieve the original for you.
Hello, the one thing I did was going on cruise sponsored excursions ( I didn't want to be out by myself in unfamiliar places). I brought a mix of cash and travelers checks. Also, I did keep my passport with me on all times (you never know when you might need it).I would recommend against Traveler's Cheques (or Travelers' Checks).....there are fewer and fewer places that accept them, and the exchange rate can be horrible. I'd recommend using ATMs and credit cards instead. However, like you, I carry my passport on shore days, if I'm given the choice (the risk of being pickpockets, IMO, is less than the risk that I will need it to speak for me in case of an accident.....YMMV).
I would recommend against Traveler's Cheques (or Travelers' Checks).....there are fewer and fewer places that accept them, and the exchange rate can be horrible. I'd recommend using ATMs and credit cards instead. However, like you, I carry my passport on shore days, if I'm given the choice (the risk of being pickpockets, IMO, is less than the risk that I will need it to speak for me in case of an accident.....YMMV).I found you can just cash them on the ship before heading out for the day-
While there of course is a risk of pick pockets; I would wear jeans or denim shorts while in port and carry my wallet and passport only in my front pocket.
I have been sailing solo for 10 years and love it. I am 55 and one of
my suggestions are 2 words..."common sense". If I am going off
the ship on my own (depending on what port I am in) has an impact
on where I will go......if it is a place I know and have been to before?
Or a new place? That would help in my decision making of going on
my own or not.
Also, see if there is a roll call for your cruise. THAT can be a wonderful
way to meet other people on your cruise. I am sailing a week from
Sunday and we have a terrific roll call....friendly, courteous, and helpful.
Tours? I have shared in private ones with roll call mates and have had
Other times I have gone on ship's tours...it just depends on what
I want to do.
As for feeling safe? On the ship? I feel very safe. Staff and crew
have always been extremely respectful and friendly. I have never
had any issues with other passengers either.
The cash/credit card question?....we all have our own ways of
traveling. I bring cash and at least 2 credit cards. For me? I don't
care about having a "pre-paid card'....not something that is important
to me. And I have not used traveler's checks in years and years...
That even seems more like a pain...if it is like the old days...2 parts,
one goes in one place, pack the other in another place.....no thanks.
As you can see, we all love to cruise, but we have our own ways
of doing things.
Do what you are most comfortable with and have a wonderful time
I'm thinking of getting a few of the pre-loaded "credit" cards to use when I'm traveling. It seems that would limit my losses if something happened. But I guess losses are limited with most credit cards, aren't they. I don't know. I feel like traveling alone is like having a sign that says "I'm carrying a lot of money, I'm vulnerable, rob me" LOL. As I said, I'm just getting nervous...but it's not going to stop me!If I may make a suggestion when your in port - project an attitude that your not a solo traveler, that your S.O. is back on ship or that your heading to meet them shortly. Your state of mind is what others sense and that will make you 'less of a target'. Have fun and enjoy your travels!
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I take a smallish purse that I fit over my shoulder and under my arm so I can close my arm over it.
I take cash with me for the area I am going, but distribute some to my purse and leave some in the safe. Then take 2 credit cards, one visa/one Master card - never had a propblem. Ship can exchange small amounts of $ to local currency for you. Do not spend time on shore looking for ATM or bank.
Inform card co you are travelling, so they will not refuse to accept your card.
I also take a photo of my passport and drive lic and carry it always with the name of the ship written on the bottom incl tel num for on board - they could call if you had an accident.
I never have needed it.
Beware in some cities some men rove around looking for women alone, and offer to buy you a drink, then lets go for a walk - never got to the walk stage, always say "no thanks" I am on my way to meet someone.
I took a big suitcase on wheels last year because I was away 6 wks, but, found it too much for me to handle. This yr, I will pack less.
When you go for a walk, look like you know where you are and what you are doing, do not carry a bunch of maps and wear clothes that blend.
If you want a taxi to go back to a ship, go to any hotel lobby and get them to get you a taxi - always works! Better than trying to wave one down. Some countries have strange lights on top - full/onorder/out of service/airport only -i cannot deciefer that.
Relax, and enjoy! I have been to over 50 countries in the last 10 yrs, and never had any problems!