NO FLASHY JEWELRY
Wearing expensive jewelry when traveling can make you an attractive target. You could be injured if a thief were to grab a chain from your wrist or neck. A diamond ring may attract unwanted attention. If you MUST wear jewelry, choose something pretty that clearly has no value and turn your ring so that only the band shows.
Choose comfortable, flat shoes that make it easy for you to run. You need shoes that protect your feet and allow you to move quickly. Select comfort and practicality over looks.
RESPECT FOR LOCAL SENSIBILITIES
Be aware of local customs when you travel. You are a guest where ever you go. Dress like one. The locals have had generations to develop a way of dressing that suits the climate and the culture. Learn from their example. Find out what is appropriate apparel for the places you are visiting.
Be modest, casual and comfortable. Consider how you might appear to a predator. Women wearing tight clothing, revealing tops and shorts can invite scrutiny from undesirable characters, lewd comments and attempts to look down shirts. Scantily clad women can also be offensive to residents. When it comes to safety, how you look is more important than your intent.
It isn't necessary for a female traveler to cover her head in most places, but there are places where having a covered head means you will get help easier should you need it. When in doubt cover your head. Lay aside opinions about appropriate dress and carry a bandana, scarf or crushable hat. A willingness to cover can convey respect, prevent prying eyes, and help avoid unwanted attention.
In some communities, bare arms and legs are only acceptable during swimming. A lightweight long-sleeved shirt, jacket or sweater can be wrapped around your waist. It will be available for sun protection or warmth and is easily removed when not needed. If you find yourself in a place where bare arms aren’t permitted, you’ll have a quick and easy slip-on solution.
A scarf shows its versatility in this regard. A scarf can be used as a head covering, a shawl or a shrug. If it’s long enough, it can cover your shoulders and your head. A silk scarf can even double as a cover for your motel pillow. In a pinch, it can be folded and used as a sack to carry items.
THINK BEFORE YOU GO
Dressing for safe travel won’t cost you a lot of money, but the time you invest in selecting your garments carefully can be priceless. Instead of drawing unwanted attention, remember that it’s more important to your loved ones that you arrive safely.
In the following clips, Kirsten and Liz discuss how women can dress for safety when traveling. Bulk Herb Store’s Shoshanna demonstrates many ways to accessorize with a scarf.