For travelers who love adventure and seeing the world on motorcycle, here are some exclusive expert motorcycle travel safety tips for women.
I’m not going to tell you that there are places you can’t or shouldn’t travel to by motorcycle, but it is important to be prepared before heading out on your journey.
Research the area
Because you are on a bike you will be more physically vulnerable even when you are driving. It is important to know the traffic and road conditions of the area, as well as areas with high crime rates.
If you are travelling internationally, you will also want to research customs and culture. Women are treated differently in different areas, and if you are spending time exploring the cities, you may find yourself reacting differently to the locals depending on the traditions of that region.
It is also important to know destinations that you want to see, and helpful stops for fueling and rest.
Blending in can also be important in a foreign country. Knowing the language will allow you to have a much better idea of what is going on around you.
Wearing similar clothing to the locals will make sure that it is appropriate by their standards, and will make you less vulnerable to robbery and other types of crime targeting tourist and foreigners.
Knowing local etiquette is also important in avoiding unwanted confrontations. In Thailand, for example, utensils and table manners are completely different than most other places. They use a fork and spoon, but instead of stabbing solid foods and eating them off of the fork, they use the fork to push food onto the spoon, and put the spoon to their mouth.
Because it is unavoidable to be recognized as a foreigner people will likely understand bad manners, but the best way to stay out of trouble—and make friends— is to know local customs.
Have a backup plan
Have a plan B, C, D, all the way through Z. Don’t worry about or expect something bad to happen, but know what you will do if you have your credit card stolen, if your bike breaks down, or if you get lost.
GPS devices are very useful, but also carry paper maps in case the device malfunctions or cannot get a signal.
You may also want to carry a telephone. Providers like AT&T and Verizon have international plans with a monthly cost, which will allow you to use your phone outside of your home country at a reduced rate. There are additional per-minute charges, but if your provider has the capability, it is an important safety measure to take so that you can make a call if you have trouble with your motorcycle or if there is an emergency. Have a list of important phone numbers written down in case you need to borrow a telephone for an important call.
Be confident in yourself
Carry yourself as if you know exactly what you are doing, even if you don’t. It is absolutely okay to stop and ask for help or directions, but project confidence to avoid unwanted negative attention. If you appear vulnerable, you are vulnerable.
Having a knowledge of self-defense is also helpful both because you will be able to protect yourself physically, and because it can help settle worry and allow you to focus more on your motorcycle journey and less on the “what-ifs”.
Having a solid plan and being aware of yourself and your surroundings is the best way to ensure a safe and exciting trip.
About the Author
Morgan Sansotta travels through the United States and internationally writing about her journeys. This Morgan’s first guest blog post for Travefy.