travel advice & savings
 
SAVE on RAIL PASSES LOWEST PRICES / FREE SHIPPING on orders over $449!
Now use the Trip Planner to:
  • Find and Buy Rail Passes
  • Find and Book Hostels
Already know which Rail Pass you need?
Click here and buy now!
Special Eurotrip Member Savings!
1 reply
First timer Slightly worried!
arwyn89
arwyn89's profile picture
New Member
New Member
Eurotrip Points: 33
Member: 15459
Joined: 06/26/2009
User offline. Last seen 4 years 29 weeks ago.

So i plan to go back packing across europe – just western – next summer. I was a bit worried about all the horror stories ive read so far, and wondered was their anything i could do – or avoid, when backpacking alone? Ive already rulled out night trains, as they seem to be when a lot of people get hassel, but im still worried about the stories ive heard from people being harassed in Italy by gypsies. This is where i plan to spen most of my time, so advice would be greatly appreciated!!!

I am leaving from Edinburgh, Scotland with $4000 for 28 days
Bruges, Paris, Milan, Volterra, Rome, Naples, Verona, Zürich, Luxembourg, The Hague, Amsterdam
Requesting help with Transport, Hostels, Budget, Itinerary, Food, Sights
I am leaving from Edinburgh, scotland with $3000 for 20 days
Naples, Rome, Amsterdam, Delft, Bruges, Paris
oldlady
oldlady's profile picture
Moderator
ModeratorModeratorModeratorModeratorModerator
Eurotrip Points: 12
Member: 778
Joined: 01/03/2007
User offline. Last seen 1 day 5 hours ago.

Quote:
I was a bit worried about all the horror stories ive read so far, and wondered was their anything i could do – or avoid, when backpacking alone?
What horror stories? In decades of travel and over 10 years on this and other travel sites, I have heard/read exactly 2 horror stories from solo females. One was from Latin America and was an extremely frightening gang attack, but ultimately just that — extremely frightening as she wasn’t harmed and they got only her pocket change. The other was from a woman traveling Europe. She was out running in the early morning and got hassled by a couple of guys — she out ran them and came to no harm, although she was very frightened by the ordeal.

1. You have little to worry about in terms of personal safety. As with all places where there are tourists and all situations where you don’t have somebody else looking out for you, you do need to take extra precautions with your belongings. Use a money belt. Carry only enough cash for the day in a pocket. Don’t flash wads of cash, expensive cameras and electronics, expensive jewelry.
2. Gypsies in any Italian city I’ve visited are no worse and no more numerous than the pan handlers in major cities anywhere… Bucharest is another story.
3. Trust your instincts. If it feels uncomfortable, don’t go there. Avoid lonely, dark streets, etc.
4. Look confident and like you know where you’re going. Don’t look lost. If you need to consult a map go into a shop or to a cafe.
5. If someone bothers you, do the following in this order: a) ignore them b) say “no,” “go away,” whatever similar phrases you know in English or local language. Be firm and definite, but polite. c) Make enough noise, with your “no,” etc. to attract attention.
6. Sun glasses help avoid unwanted eye contact. The smile and/or greeting to everyone you meet that may be normal behavior at home may be interpreted as a come-on from a solo female in Europe.