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Advice for female travellers

Information sheets

While France is quite a safe country, it's best to take a few precautions if you want to travel alone, especially if you're a woman. Here are a few tips to enjoy a good holiday with peace of mind.

Advice for female travellers

Before setting off

Before going on holiday in France on her own, a woman can take a few steps to ensure her comfort and reassure her loved ones.

  • To start with, you should reassure your loved ones, especially if they live in another country. To do this, don't hesitate to give them a detailed description of French culture and show them a few articles on life in the country. You can also put their mind at rest by giving them a detailed map of your itinerary, with contact details for the places you're staying, the towns you plan to visit, and all the ways they can get in touch with you.
  • While there is no special dress code in France, it's best to avoid revealing clothes if you want to blend in and avoid being bothered by men.
  • Booking your accommodation in advance can help you avoid having to look around at night trying to find a room at the last minute, which can be quite hard in high season.
  • Remember to take out travel insurance covering flights and repatriation. For foreigners, in the event of administrative problems, you can always consult the consulate for your country of origin in France.

On the road

As stated above, France is not a high-risk country for women travelling alone. However, it can be helpful to take a few steps to avoid being bothered during your stay.

  • Hitchhiking is not very common in France, even less so among women, and is best avoided. It's best to choose car-sharing with reputable drivers, take a taxi, or opt for public transport of course.
  • Women on their own are often seen as easy targets for purse-snatchers and pickpockets. You should therefore avoid displaying valuables unnecessarily. If you go to popular tourist spots, it's best to leave your valuables and papers at the hotel, in a safe or just at the bottom of your bag. In crowds, choose bags that you can close and wear on your front. Carry a copy of your passport, not the original, when going out.
  • Sometimes it's not very nice being alone in a restaurant at night. To avoid this, you can eat a big lunch and have a light snack in your room at night. Although this stops you enjoying the local nightlife, it has the advantage of giving you the chance to rest before the next day's activities. If you are alone at a restaurant, there are a few ways you can dissuade people from approaching you if you don't want to talk to them: bring a book, read the paper, work on your laptop, be on your phone, etc. If you do want to go out at night, it's best to take a taxi back to your room because public transport can be empty late at night.
  • When going to an unknown place, it's best to have a detailed look at it on the map before going there, rather than wandering around holding a map and looking lost . Some opportunistic criminals might think you're in a vulnerable situation.
  • Although being on your own can be an opportunity to meet wonderful people, travelling alone can also be lonely. When you feel lonely, you can always connect with your loved ones by calling home or speaking online.
  • If you change your plans and itinerary, always tell your loved ones, as it may stop them worrying unnecessarily.

While women on their own are liable to be bothered more than men or couples, it doesn't happen all the time. So you don't need to get too paranoid if you've decided to go on holiday alone in France. The precautions listed above are more than enough to ensure you have a great holiday in this beautiful country!

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