I loved travelling during my student years with my friends, be it in a group or with a partner. Although it may be daunting because you’re a girl and safety is definitely an issue.
So my main advice is; be sensible and be safe. That’s number 1. will elaborate below. Again, my travels are always budget travels. So please prepare well in advance. My top tips would be:
- Stay safe: Please be sensible, don’t go into dark alleys, travel alone at night at a place you’re not familiar, follow people you don’t know. That kind of thing. Please make lots of dua (prayers) to be protected and that you meet with only nice people.
- Tell others where you are heading, so that they know where you are update them regularly or give your travel itinerary, this way at least someone knows where you and your friends are.
- Take a picture of your passport/ travel insurance/important documents and mail them to yourself. This way if you have these important documents stolen, you at least have a copy somewhere the internet is accessible.
- Please do not carry too much cash around, bring a credit card for emergency use. When bringing cash please separate the cash. Some ideas: front jeans pocket, inside jacket pocket, spectacle case, inner zip of bag.
- On the topics of bags : I recommend zipped and sling bags so that you can see the bag once you sing it in front of you. Backpacks are easy targets as you don’t necessarily see the back behind you
- If you look like me and is obviously a tourist being approached by someone who looks fishy, just pretend you don’t understand them and walk on. In Paris; some would approach you trying to get you to sign a petition for the disabled-just ignore. Some would ask for money. Again; ignore. As I am one to give to charity-in a foreign land, best be safe.
- Try and avoid bringing too much gadgets, keep it to a minimum. Upload your pictures online and delete them on your device. This is why free wi-fi in hotels are important to me!
- A good place to try to get help is a mosque. There you can ask people who work there, a lot of advice on where to stay, and places to eat. I also like to ask advice at halal restaurants. Most of them are welcoming; but again please be careful.
- On booking of places to stay; make sure you check review on free websites that are not selling you anything. One of my trusted places is Trip Advisor. When you get back, please do your part and do a little review to help other travellers. The more the reviews the better. Be careful on bookings that are private homes and rooms.; for me I prefer hotels but if it was a homestay, I would only book if my friends have had experience booking there
- Traveller tips on places to visit on Trip Advisor is also the best. This is why homework is important before you go. Find out what you want to see, how much it may cost and most importantly advice from other travellers. Some places you need to be more vigilant than others
- Don’t forget to download maps, to save on roaming so that you know where you are
- other apps: prayer times, and at least one or two words in the local native language
- I would recommend prayers at a local mosque: so that you get tips as above. If not, then a changing room will suffice (to pray for a safe journey). The only prayers that you may have to pray would be Zuhr-Asr combined and the rest at a hotel.
- Lastly-gosh, have fun! If you do have a tiny bad experience; at least you’ve done your best, and look ahead; enjoy the rest of your trip
More on my Hijabi traveller series, please take note all are just my experience and may be very different from yours. enjoy!:
always on the move
Amna Hijabs: amnahajar.tictail.com