July 15, 2024
what to pack when travelling alone as a woman

The key to packing right when travelling alone is to pack minimally. In other words, packing just what you need. From toiletries and cosmetics to medication, gadgets, travel documents, security essentials, and clothing, this article explores what to pack when travelling alone as a woman, so you know how best to keep things simple when packing for your trip.

But first, let’s discuss…

Factors to consider when packing for a solo trip

Destination

Every destination is different. To ensure you are comfortable and ready for any eventuality during your trip, learn as much as you can about your destination. What is the weather like? What about the culture? How safe is the town I’m travelling to? Are there any activities my destination is known for that I’d like to take part in? etc. Having answers to these questions will help you know exactly what to pack and what not to pack.

Duration of your stay

Considering the duration of your stay is crucial when packing for a solo trip because it directly influences the quantity and variety of the items you need to pack.

Over-packing for a brief stay can be burdensome while under-packing for a long trip might lead to inconvenience and additional expenses. Taking the time to assess the duration of your solo trip enables you to strike a balance, optimizing your packing choices for both practicality and comfort.

Itinerary

Your itinerary also influences the type of clothing, accessories, and essentials you’ll need.

For example, if your itinerary includes outdoor activities such as hiking, mountain climbing, etc., you need to pack appropriate gear. On the other hand, if you plan to visit religious sites or fancy dining establishments, or engage in business networking sessions, you ought to pack modest and formal attire.

What should a woman bring on a trip alone?

I will divide this section into sub-sections so this article can easily serve as the ultimate female packing list for you.

1. Toiletries

  • Lip balm
  • Sunscreen
  • Perfume
  • Sanitary pad
  • Hand moisturiser
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Body cream/ lotion
  • Face and body wash
  • Nail cutter and tweezers
  • Shaving cream/ shaving stick
  • Insect repellent- if you are travelling to the tropics.
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Shampoo and conditioner
  • Deodorant and body spray
  • Travel-size laundry detergent

It is easy to get toiletries anywhere you travel to, but it is advisable to travel with yours especially if your skin is sensitive and you use specific products.

2. Cosmetics

Getting the right shade/ tone of cosmetics products you need when you travel abroad is usually a bit harder than getting toiletries, especially when you travel to a community where people have a different skin colour to yours. If you’d like to make up during your trip, I’d advise you to travel with your makeup products such as your:

  • Primer
  • Foundation
  • Concealer
  • Powder
  • Eye pencil
  • Blush, bronzer
  • Makeup brushes
  • Lip gloss and lipstick
  • Mascara and eyeliner
  • Eye shadow palette
  • Makeup remover/ face wipes

3. Medication

  • Pain relief tablet
  • First aid kit items such as adhesive bandages, antiseptic wipes
  • Glasses or contact lenses and contact lens solution (if applicable)
  • And of course, any medication you are on (if any)

4. Bedding

The bed linens you need to pack for your trip depend on the type of accommodation you’ll be staying at and the hygiene standards of the place. Consider travelling with the following bed linens:

  • Bedspread
  • Pillowcase
  • Duvet cover
  • Mattress protector
  • Light-weight travel blanket
  • Sleeping bag liner

5. Security and safety essentials

Safety is a major concern for most women who travel alone, and rightfully so. Use an anti-theft backpack to pack your properties and take the following when travelling to keep you and your belongings safe.

  • Travel locks- for your bags, door, locker, etc.
  • Pacsafe backpack or bag protector
  • Money belt or hidden pouch
  • Personal safety alarm
  • Pepper spray
  • Door stopper
  • Door-stop alarm

6. Documents

Save the digital copy of your travel documents on your phone, email, cloud, or Dropbox, but also come with the hard copy of your:

  • Passport and visa
  • Travel insurance
  • Emergency contacts: Have a list of emergency contacts saved on your phone and a written copy in your bag.

7. Gadgets

  • Phone
  • Charger
  • Power bank
  • Torch/ headlamp
  • Universal travel adapter
  • Language translator device, if needed. Alternatively, you can download a language translator app.

If you’d like to create content, you may also need the following:

  • Camera
  • Selfie stick
  • Tripod stand
  • Laptop

8. Clothes

As a female solo traveller, when packing clothes for your trip, the climate/ weather and culture of the place you are travelling to are the two most important things you should consider. Please consider both. Some clothes may be suitable for the weather, but if they are culturally inappropriate, you could be exposing yourself to harassment or even danger by wearing them.

Prioritize clothes you can easily mix and match when packing. Remember we already established in the beginning of this article that the key to packing right when travelling alone is to pack minimally. Versatile clothes will help you achieve this.

Clothes to pack when travelling to a hot climate

  • T-shirt and tank tops: bring both long and short-sleeved t-shirts and tank tops
  • Light blouses suitable for different occasions
  • Swimsuits, bikinis, and sarongs, if you plan to visit the pool or beach
  • Light cardigan, in case it gets cold at night
  • Dresses, preferably sleeveless.
  • Light scarf/ shawl
  • Trousers and shorts
  • Skirts
  • Accessories such as wide-brimmed sunhat and UV-protective sunglasses
  • Don’t forget your underwear and bras

Before you start folding your clothes into your bag, it is worth noting that clothes and shoes made of breathable, moisture-wicking fabrics, like cotton or linen, are the best for hot climates.

Footwear:

Flip-flops, slippers, sandals and flat shoes are your best options. But you can throw in a pair of sneakers as well. If you plan to engage in outdoor activities such as hiking, you’d need hiking shoes for this.

Clothes to pack when travelling to a cold place

When travelling to somewhere cold, layering is key to staying warm and comfortable. You’d need the following to achieve this:

  • Insulated, waterproof outer jacket
  • Mid-layer: fleece or insulated jacket
  • Base layer: sweaters or hoodie, thermal top
  • Shirts, preferably long-sleeve
  • Waterproof trousers
  • Jeans/ thick trousers
  • Thermal leggings
  • Underwear
  • Accessories like insulated gloves, beanies, neck warmers, earmuffs, thermal socks, etc.

Footwear:

If it’s cold, then it will likely be wet. You want to travel with gaiters and insulated, non-slip shoes such as winter boots and sneakers. You’ll still need your slippers for staying indoors and flip-flops for the bathroom.

Remember what we said about the duration of your trip as a factor to consider when packing for a solo trip. How much clothes you’d need to pack depends on this. To avoid packing more clothes than you need, plan what you want to wear every day for the duration of your trip and use packing cubes to arrange them. I understand this may only work for a weekend, a 3-day or at most a 10-day trip and may not work if you’ll be travelling for longer. If you’ll be on a solo trip for longer, it may not hurt to travel light and buy some clothes when you arrive at your destination.

Other things to pack when travelling alone as a woman include:

  • Cash and bank card
  • Water purifier
  • Filter water bottle
  • Washing/ clothesline
  • Waterproof backpack protector
  • Puzzle book, novel or e-reader to keep yourself entertained in case you get bored
  • Journal and pen, for documenting your thoughts and feelings
  • Fake wedding band, for warding off unwanted suitors.

Frequently asked questions

Is it ok for a girl to travel alone?

Females who are referred to as girls are often minors. I don’t think minors should travel alone, especially abroad or on an adventure for safety reasons. However for women, it is ok to travel alone. In fact, it is advisable to as there are several benefits of travelling alone as a woman

Is it safe to stay in a hotel alone as a woman?

Hotels do what they can to keep their facility safe for both male and female guests. Yet, women can still get burgled or attacked. If you’ll be staying in a hotel alone, I recommend taking extra safety precautions.

How many suitcases can one person take on a plane?

Most airlines allow two (2) 23kg suitcases and one carry-on luggage. Check your flight ticket or your airline’s website to know what they allow. However, if you are travelling alone for a holiday, on an adventure or on a short trip, you may want to consider travelling with as little as possible as travelling with multiple luggage is often stressful.

Conclusion

To wrap things up, knowing what to pack when travelling alone as a woman contributes remarkably to a successful solo trip. Know how long you’ll be away and what kind of activities you’ll be doing so you can pack just what you need and avoid bringing too much stuff. Whether it’s a quick weekend getaway with simple outfits or a longer trip needing more clothes and essentials, pack accordingly.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *