Deciding to take a solo trip to Europe can be exhilarating — traveling to a foreign land, constantly being on the go and learning about yourself. Unfortunately, the trip can come with fair warnings. Although it’s unlikely you’ll wind up kidnapped like the daughter in action thriller Taken, you do need to take steps to stay safe in Europe.
First, be prepared. Many large European cities have a high rate of pickpocketing and theft. Make sure your money, passport and travel documents are close to your body — not resting in the outside pocket of your backpack. Also, invest in a padlock before you leave. If you’re sleeping on the train, attach your luggage to the rack with a padlock.
Second, try to become familiar with public transportation. Download the Ulmon app, which offers a fully loaded city map with restaurant listings and sightseeing spots.
If you’re staying in a hostel, start making conversation. Getting to know the other travelers will inherently add an element of safety to your stay. But, don’t be too trusting. If there’s a locker available, spend the money to lock up your valuables. You can also go Couchsurfing and or choose a homestay to avoid hostels.
Now that you’re cautious, enjoy! Europe is full of history, culture, sights and art.
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