Solo travelling is becoming popular. However, it’s important to take safety measures into consideration because it can be dangerous out there.
In one case, a Nigerian woman reported that she had been sexually assaulted at the Warere Beach Hotel in Zanzibar.
Zainab Oladehinde took to Twitter to share the alleged incident, which she says happened on April 16 last year, when she travelled to Zanzibar alone.
She states that while sleeping naked at night she felt a man touch her. She says she struggled as the man tried to force her to have sex before she convinced him to go bring a condom and he agreed.
In a Facebook post on Sunday morning, Warere Beach Hotel said the matter was reported to the relevant authorities who classified the case as personal, and not due to the hotel’s negligence.
“We tried our best to support Ms Zainab Oladehinde as soon as we learned of the accusations. We immediately brought her to the police and offered her support,” the hotel’s post said.
“As I struggled to not let him strangle me, he left the room and told me he’d be back with a condom. Immediately he left, I switched on the light, tried to call hotel reception but to my surprise, there were no intercom or phone lines to reach the hotel reception through the room,” Oladehinde said.
Once the man left, she snuck out of the room, seeking refuge with a Russian couple she had met earlier.
Do women really need safety gear when travelling alone?
Yes. Anything can happen, anywhere, any time, especially if you’re alone.
The ultimate safety gear
First Aid Kit
A first-aid kit should include things such as plasters, cold and flu medicine, painkillers, eye drops, anti-motion sickness medicine and any prescription medication you are taking.
Bear in mind that certain medicines are not allowed in some countries. The rules on banned substances differ from place to place.
Personal alarm keychain
A personal alarm is small and is easy to travel with. It can be activated by pulling on a ripcord. You can carry it in your pocket, wear it as a necklace or bracelet, or literally attach to anything you carry. The sound is quite loud and it’s a handy gadget to carry if you’re walking or running in a city.
The alarm can also be used to get the attention of passers by if you need medical attention or help.
Anti-theft Packs, Wallets and Cross-body Bags
This sounds like fashion and safety all in one gadget. An anti-theft bag is something you can carry around while sightseeing in a new city, taking day trips, or hiking solo.
Thieves are everywhere and they often target tourists. Anti-theft bags come with slash-proof bodies, so those sly thieves will not be able to get into your belongings, try as they may.
Portable door lock
This sounds like something everyone needs, whether you’re in an Airbnb or a hotel room, a portable door lock is what you need. It’s easy to install with a sturdy design, and works in most doors that open inwards. That way you can avoid any strangers opening your door while you’re sleeping.
Pepper Spray Keyring
Most pepper sprays deliver a spray that reaches 30cm. It also has a keyring attached to it, to conveniently attach to your keys or your handbag.
They are available at most stores or online and could save your life.
Car safety hammer
Being in a car with a stranger puts women in a very vulnerable place.
If you’re ever in an uncomfortable situation, this gadget will give you an edge. It is equipped with a double-sided hammer that can be used to smash the window and a hidden blade to cut your seatbelt if you have trouble taking it off.
These are just a few of the gadgets that are on the market today. If you do some research you will come across others that could make your solo trip a lot safer and easier.