How Dangerous Is Traveling Solo???

Recently, numerous articles about women’s safety when traveling solo abroad have circulated targeting specific city’s crime statistics like murder, rape, and robbery.

My favorite article is from a London based publication the Daily Mail, entitled “Sex attacks, muggings and harassment: World’s most dangerous holiday destinations for women (and some of the places may surprise you)”.

Honestly, the article really just makes me sick and it is an un-neccessary blow into the tourist industry.  It reflects the author in a negative way as she comes across like she is saying “if you are a woman and travel abroad you will get raped or murdered!”  Seriously????

As many of you know, I am a huge supporter of men AND woman traveling solo and think that it is a necessary rite of passage into adulthood.  When you venture out into the world, one day on the streets in a unfamiliar setting will teach you more than one week in a classroom.  Having traveled solo internationally many times myself, I have encountered only a few experiences where safety was a concern so it makes me sad to hear someone almost intentionally trying to dissuade people from traveling.

To me it does not matter if you are traveling internationally or domestically, the risk of violent and non-violent crimes exists and for the sake of being smart you should ALWAYS be aware of your surroundings and understand how to keep yourself safe.  Unfortunately, accidents do happen and sometimes no matter the precautions you take you cannot avoid fate.  This applies at home too.

And for the record – I HATE, HATE, HATE news channels.  They all make it seem like the world is falling apart and going to shit in each episode they air.  Anyone can make you afraid of any subject by highlighting the negative things on a reoccurring basis….basically brainwashing you.  The media has such an affect over the minds of millions that it is terrifying, they can make us perceive and believe anything they want to.

Not me.  My perceptions of the world will ALWAYS come from my own experiences.

But let me clarify.  Yes, I believe that traveling can be dangerous whether you are solo or in a group but I also believe that the risks of crime happening at home are just as prevalent.

Everyone has an opinion on the matter but it is important how you form your opinion.  Is it from following the news or from actual experiences?

Lets put this into prospective.
The article cites that in South Africa, “More than 66,000 sexual offenses were reported in 2012-2013, a rate of 127 sexual offenses per 100,000 population.”
Well according to RAIIN, the nation’s largest anti-sexual assault organization, “There is an average of 293,066 victims of rape and sexual assault each year.  Every 107 seconds, another American is sexually assaulted.  Here’s the math.  There are 525,600 minutes in a non-leap year.  That makes 31,536,000 seconds/year.  So, 31,536,000 divided by 293,066 comes out to 1 sexual assault every 107 seconds.”
So what is my point?  Is it really fair that she targeted South Africa when ANYWHERE in the world experiences sexual offenses???
My second point:
The author discusses female harassment in Morocco, which as we all know is a Muslim country.  Yes, it is common practice for female travelers to dress conservatively when in ANY Muslim country AND to understand the views of men towards women.  But is there really a difference between the catcalls in Morocco than Italy?
Why is Italy not on the list for harassment when all day every day men shout to women, “Ciao bella!”
That is how it is and I speak from experience.

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And I agree with Stephanie from Twenty Something Travel on how the best aspect of this article is the advice from her fellow travel bloggers.

My point is this, I do not think it is fair to target certain countries and state they are dangerous for a women to travel to when EVERYWHERE has dangers.

Simply choose wisely on your travel destination and while you are on home soil – be safe out there.

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