Now, I’m receiving lots of commendation regarding the GO GIRLS Travel Tips Series. As much as I want to get the credit, the praise should be to the girls who are brave enough to make trails that even boys follow. Let me continue the series with 2 of the bellas of the Philippine Travel Blogging scene:
Be friendly to locals and fellow travelers.
Traveling alone as a woman entitles you to certain benefits. And one of them is that everyone you meet will want to take care of you. They will give you advice, free food and go out of their way just to make sure you make it safe to you next destination. I’ve had a couple take me under their wing on a bus ride from Bangkok to Koh Samui, Thailand. They woke me up when we had to change buses and made sure I had a place to stay. I’ve had complete strangers offer me homemade food when they saw I got lost trying to find a restaurant in Nancy, France. Traveling alone, especially as a single woman, opens you up to all sorts of generosity and goodwill. Just accept it and be thankful. You will get help when you most need it.
Plan ahead of time. But see, you plan and then you don’t. It’s nice to know where you are going and the places to see when you get there. But you have to give room to spontaneity. Research on the place, not so much on the tourist spots but on what makes the place unique. I never fail to read history. It gives one so much understanding of the culture, thus, one would know how to act and carry themselves when walking among the people of the place for the first time. Don’t plan too much that you miss out on talking to people. I see a lot of backpackers so drawn to the backpacking circle that they forget the locals who can share so much more.
What to bring/wear
I’m a terrible obsessive compulsive so I photocopy documents twice. My backpack has a secret compartment for drugs… wait, no. haha! A compartment where i put important phone numbers, photocopy of my travel documents (plane tickets, hotel/transport reservations, and passport). a guide (no, not lonely planet) which I myself put together from my research. My toiletries are basic: soap, shampoo, and moisturizer. One thing that I really recommend is sun screen. Also, micro-fiber towels. They’re small but super absorbent. I have long hair so I need to have that to get on with my bathroom rituals quickly. I bring lightweight clothes. Something that I never leave without: a sarong because it is multi-functional.
Remember the “incessant proposal” article? I picked up a lot of tips there from everyone, including you. Now I bring a ring I put on my ring finger so I can always say I am married or engaged to ward of unpalatable conversations. If that doesn’t work, I always have my Swiss knife. Aside from courage, I bring a handful of common sense and a lot of intuition. I am a girl and I always trust my gut.
How to look like a person (my version of how to stay fresh and beautiful)
I take showers twice a day, before I leave the hostel and before I go to sleep. It’s the Pinoy in me who’s talking. I always have wet and dry tissue in my day pack. I throw in my hand sanitizer and a small kikay kit (I know, so not halata) that has powder, cologne, and lip balm and I am good to go.
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"Go girl! You can do solo travel..."
GO GIRLS TRAVEL TIPS SERIES is my way of saying “thanks” and “go girl, you can do solo travel” to my female readers I hope you many will try and embrace the adventures of female solo traveling.
I asked 10 female travel bloggers for help on topics like safety, solo travel, outfit & fashion, staying pretty while on the road, travel secrets and more girls talk.
Nina & Paula / Chyng & Lisa Marie / Claire & Kaiz / Lois & Monette / Gael & Gay