Tag Archives: tips

Top ten tips re females travelling on their own

Georgian-Court-HotelI spend a lot of time out and about in my car. I often use the Laterooms service to get a good hotel deal and this has taken me to all sorts of off the beaten track hotels, some I’ve liked more than others.

But travelling alone as a female comes with certain risks and there are some precautions you can take to reduce these.

Most of these are fairly self evident things like ‘don’t run out of petrol at nights’, ‘always have your emergency breakdown contact details handy’, ‘keep a personal attack alarm handy’, ‘choose where to park your car wisely’, ‘don’t overdo the girly accessories onboard’ and always keep your mobile phone topped up of course.

But when it comes to staying at hotels on your own are there things you could do, to be safer and enjoy a more female friendly stay? Here are a few tips I’ve picked up based on experience…

1. If you can arrive at your destination during daylight hours it’s less intimidating.

2. If you plan to arrive late at night, ask in advance if you can park close to the reception area, rather than in a dark corner of a distant car park.

3. Choose your room wisely – if it’s a big hotel on many floors, ask for a room near the lift. Or an escort of course.

4. A breakfast menu for one hanging on your door is an instant sign that you’re on your own.

From a hotel point of view I’m always surprised that so few emphasise their safety features such as double locking doors (with an inside chain or similar) and a viewing eyeglass to see who’s there before opening up… And too many reception staff still proudly announce your room number at a busy reception desk when there’s really no need to.

The hotel services I consider to be female friendly, however, include:

5. Genuinely free wi-fi – not the ones that give you 30 mins free then expect you to pay for more…

6. A guaranteed range of quality toiletries (so I don’t have to bring all mine from home).

7. An evening menu/room service that includes healthy options eg fresh salads.

8. The choice of a wall-side restaurant table/seat where I can either look into the room or read without feeling watched…

9. Complimentary drinking water (in case I’ve run out).

10. A full length mirror.

I don’t normally stay in 5 star hotels on business (because I’m paying) but these are all fairly straight-forward and affordable areas that result in my future loyalty, positive feedback and word of mouth marketing.

And the safety matters should surely be minimum standards in any hotel that claims to welcome women who travel on their own.

Always look on the bright side…

clocks-go-backI live with a SAD sufferer and for whom the October clock change means the onslaught of winter and a good reason for his evident trials and tribulation.

After a summer of laid back and devil may care attitude he has his first cold this weekend and, as I see it, this is more to do with his mind than any truly congested head.

Not that I’m unsympathetic of course…

Which is why I identified with the latest wisdom from the IAM, coinciding with the clocks going back this weekend. Yes we get an extra hour in bed but thereafter this affects journeys to and from work and probably the morning school run as well. Which means we should remember the following things we can do to make sure our car(s) are as well prepared as possible for this in advance.

* To improve your view as far as possible, keep your lights and windscreen clean. It’s easy to forget the inside of the windows, but keeping them clean helps prevent them from misting-up.

* Use main beam on a dark unlit road, but when other drivers or riders are approaching make sure you dip your lights to avoid dazzling the oncoming road users.

* Making sure you can stop safely within the distance you can see to be clear still applies in the dark.

* Look at how the traffic ahead behaves for clues to possible problems you can’t see yet – the way other lights behave can tell you a lot.

* Use the headlights of the car you are following to help you see further ahead.

* Don’t look at any lights themselves, but at what they show – so you can make use of more of the light there is from any source, without losing your “night vision” any more than you have to.

* Use the reflective road signs and lines to help you see where the road goes and where there could be particular problems.

* If an approaching car forgets to dip its lights, look beyond the lights to their left to avoid being dazzled as much.

* If it’s gloomy in the morning, don’t forget to put your lights on then too.

IAM chief examiner Peter Rodger said: “The risk of collisions increases in the dark as visibility is reduced. In poor weather remember that you still need to see things like large pools of water or fallen trees in the dark – so adjust your driving to suit all the conditions combined.”

I’d add: “Check your tyres more regularly than ever and if you’re a Club member take advantage of our free seasonal car checks; they’ll make sure your tyres, lights, antifreeze and battery are up to the winter challenge ahead.”