Solo female travelers...pros and cons

Discussion in 'Solo travellers' started by bennyyorkie, Nov 11, 2018.

  1. bennyyorkie

    bennyyorkie Funster

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    Hi,
    Im a beginner in my 30's..as in I am researching which van to buy for me and my yorkie's summer trips. I've seen lots of videos on youtube which "project" only positive elements of the solo female vanlife but would love to learn more about the day to day realities. I plan to travel around the UK and Ireland for a good while before going further afield.
    So not really sure what to ask about specifically? I dont really believe that a female solo travelers is automatically at more risk. I guess Im wondering what precautions should a female solo van gal take so as to feel secure on the road?
    Also, wondering how I might make my yorkie feel secure....I guess blacked out windows so that he wouldnt be easily seen when I'm away from the van for a few hours and an alarm?

    Lastly, I'm anxious to learn as much as I can about mechanical stuff...luckily have a mechanic in the family to help with that...but how do you feel about breaking down on the road? Is breakdown assistance reliable? I guess local garages are likely to put a premium on prices when they see a stranded foreign campervan?
    Would love to hear your experiences and how you handled them :)
    Trying to find a balance against the youtube vanlife falsehoods.
     
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  2. rosalan

    rosalan Funster

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    Mechanically motorhomes are pretty basic for a mechanic and other than possible size problems in their garage, there should be little difference from a car.
    Most, if not all vans have an assortment of blinds that leave you as private as you might wish to be.
    There are many solo female drivers in Motorhomes. A visit to a Motorhome rally might be a good way to meet other single lady travellers and to discuss any concerns face to face.
    Finally, from my own experience, the larger the van the easier the controls are to use.
     
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  3. Figaro

    Figaro Funster

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    You could do a car maintenance course at nightschool / college. This would give you a basic understanding of mechanical issues, most of which would be transferable to a motorhome.
    Breakdown cover is essential for all and on the limited number of occasions I've needed it they turned up pretty quickly.
    I think female drivers also receive priority attention.
    There are solo female members who I'm sure will be along soon to reassure you further.
     
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  4. Janine

    Janine Funster Life Member

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    I travel solo (except my vicious cocker spaniel :) )

    I don’t wild camp and stay on sites for security but other single ladies on here are happy to overnight in lay-bys. It all depends on your own perception of danger.

    I have RAC cover for mechanical emergencies with relay to get me home if necesssary.

    Enjoy the lifestyle without over-thinking it would be my advice :)
     
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  5. maz

    maz Funster

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    I was a solo female fulltimer for over 3 years - still fulltiming but now as part of a couple. Travelled around UK staying at a mixture of CC sites (in winter when it’s cheapest), CLs and THSs, Fun rallies and wild camping. No real safety issues - bizarrely it was on a CC site when I had my tyres deliberately let down and valve damaged by a creepy guy. There’s an ancient thread on here about it somewhere - Funsters were very supportive! (y)

    I have a good alarm system (Strikeback) and deadlocks on all doors. Also have a dog - a good deterrent. Breakdown assistance is part of the insurance cover.

    If you wild camp, choose your spot sensibly and park up so that you can drive off without having to get out of the van. I’ve never had to leave a spot in a hurry but it’s good to know that you can if you have to. :)

    Enjoy the adventure! (y)
     
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  6. Viennese

    Viennese Funster

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  7. Eggs

    Eggs Funster

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    There was a solo lady full timer on the site I'm over wintering on a couple of weeks ago. We got chatting when she pulled on and ended up sharing a takeaway in my van. She was an Ecologist that tutored the length and breadth of the country, she was telling me that she didn't wild but used CS. She said she hadn't had a problem in the 3 years she'd had her van.

    Good luck, and try not to worry, most people I meet and chat to seem like decent folk.
     
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  8. bennyyorkie

    bennyyorkie Funster

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    It really puts my mind at ease reading your replies. Every time you turn on the TV these days, it someone warning you of what you should be afraid of or a rare tragic story that looks like a realistic possibility by the time you finish watching it! Thanks so much for the great feedback :)
     
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  9. Rob and Val

    Rob and Val Funster

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    If you took heed of all the horror stories that you read about in the newspapers or watch on the TV then you'd never get out of bed! As long as you are sensible - and I'm sure that you are - then you have nothing to worry about. Happy travels. :)
     
  10. maz

    maz Funster

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    Would just like to add that Fun is a great support network. I really appreciate the help and advice that I’ve received over the years. And that help is not just confined to the online forums. Several Funsters have helped me out in real life too. (y)
     
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  11. rosalan

    rosalan Funster

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    Looking back I notice this is your first week with us so ....:welcomesign:
     
  12. Just smiffy

    Just smiffy Funster

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    ive Always wanted to travel in a Motorhome around Europe on my own and this year got my chance, came out a couple of months ago and now down in Spain for the warm weather ..... I intended/intend to stay out until March but I’ve really surprised myself by how lonely I get and I’m seriously considering my Motorhome life....

    My Motto at the moment is “be careful what you wish for” :Eeek:

    Don’t want to put a damper on your enthusiasm but it’s something to consider...
     
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  13. Langtoftlad

    Langtoftlad Funster Life Member

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    I think that all depends on why someone is going 'solo' doesn't it?
    If you're 'solo' already looking to go fulltime, that's one thing but if recently 'solo' trying to get away, fulltime might increase the feeling of isolation.
    All depends on circumstances.
     
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  14. Just smiffy

    Just smiffy Funster

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    Yes, too true...

    It’s early days for me so plenty of time for things to change....
     
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  15. Theonlysue

    Theonlysue Funster Life Member

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    There are some female only fb sites. Very interesting and worth joining.
     
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  16. Indy259

    Indy259 Funster

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    Welcome to Fun. I am solo and spent five weeks in France this year with a few other solo women. I think you just have to be sensible, I do not wild camp unless with others but stay mainly on camp sites. As someone else said, don't over think, but also be aware.
     
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  17. Lot lover

    Lot lover Funster

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    A few weeks ago a friend had her handbag stolen while in Barcelona. Does this mean that all you lone females should shun Spain?
     
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  18. Sundowners

    Sundowners Funster Life Member

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    If you don't have a van yet, try not to get a Ford Transit. They seem to be highly desirable for thieves at the moment, easy to get into. If you had a good alarm system, that might deter them.

    However, don't let that put you off going solo. Just be careful don't take any chances and trust no one.
     
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  19. SGNV

    SGNV Funster

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    I'm on my own and fulltime about a year now, have not left the UK yet, love exploring in winter. I don't wild, just feel safer on a cl or campsite, I did work on a campsite all through summer, way too young to retire, but not wanting to spend the rest of that time just working, there's more to life.
    I do have the Strikeback alarm, which I can turn on at night if I'm not quite sure. Don't let the whole Ford Transit bit stop you, if the van you like is a Ford, then get a good alarm, being comfortable in an environment you like is really important. I spent a lot of time thinking and looking around at what kind of lay out would suit me and the kind of things I like doing. I am very happy with it.
    And as to breaking down, touch wood, hasn't happened yet but breakdown cover comes with the insurance. I wouldn't consider doing any more 'maintenance' than check oil, water, tyre pressure etc.
    My approach to life is that the vast majority of people are nice, be cautious yes, but don't let it hold you back. I by now have quite a few places where I keep going back, people are kind. Also getting involved here on Fun is good, people keep an eye out for each other, I get a text from one or another if I haven't been on-line for a while just to check that I am ok and I really appreciate that.
    As to loneliness, again depends as to why you choose this life. I am a natural loner and it is suiting me ever so well. I still meet plenty of people.
    Sadly there are still far too many patronising attitudes around and comments as 'aren't you brave driving something that big', really annoys me, but hopefully the more of us doing it, the better, more 'normal', it will get.
    Give it a try, I just told myself to try for a year and I've decided now to add another year. But there's no shame in saying that it isn't for you, but if you don't try you will spend the rest of your life wondering what if.
     
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  20. scotzsue

    scotzsue Funster

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    Well said @SGNV
    Another vote for OP to do her homework and get out there and enjoy herself.
     
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