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Safety tips for women traveling alone in Peru

Safety tips for women traveling alone in Peru

Travel Tips and Safety Advice – Part 10

Part 10

As already mentioned in our article "How dangerous is Peru", Peru is a diverse country full of vitality and South American lifestyle which can be visited easily and safely, even for solo female travelers.

Most of the recommendations for a safe and problem-free stay apply to all travelers and foreigners living here and are already covered in the many articles of our "Safety, Security & Travel Advice" series  To avoid lenghty repetitions here, best take your time and read through them.

Anyhow, one topic foreign women traveling alone must deal with in Peru is macho behavior and male chauvinism. Unfortunately, both are common occurrences and female foreigners are often seen as "fair game". Already a friendly conversation, a smile or similar could be misinterpreted. Wearing fancy, sexy outfits only increases unwanted attention. So best adjust your behavior to avoid uncomfortable situations.

More annoying than dangerous are unwanted looks and stares, frequent whistles, and flattering compliments by Peruvian men. The best reaction is to just ignore it!

As everywhere around the globe there are men that take advantage of crowded conditions in busses or trains by groping women. This, of course, can happen to you in Peru as well. Don’t be ashamed, but rather speak up and seek help from the bus driver or fellow passengers. Even shouting something simple through the bus like "Estas loco? No, me tocas!" surely will throw him off and attract attention.

Getting around with taxis is another story. While there are literally thousands of honest and nice taxi drivers in Peru that only want to earn a few bugs by driving you safely to your destination, there are as everywhere a few rotten apples.

For your safety as a woman traveling alone we recommend instead of flagging down a taxi on the street, please only use established taxi companies such as Uber, Cabify and others or registered other taxi services that are usually only one phone call or a click on their app away. Please read our article "Taking a taxi"  for more detailed information.

Not only in Peru, but everywhere in the world hitchhiking is a bad idea, especially for women traveling solo. Even if you are on a tight budget, please avoid this dangerous way of getting around; public transportation is affordable in Peru.

As already mentioned in our article "Meeting the opposite sex in Peru", be careful who you trust. There are some male Peruvians out there, called bricheros, targeting female visitors with the sole goal of taking advantage of them. While they seem to be the perfect friend and lover, everything you ever wanted, don’t be fooled; actually they are selling their affection and "services" to you for material benefits and probably even the prospect of a visa in your home country. So be careful who you give your heart to.

And finally, especially when traveling solo, use your common sense and always listen to your gut feeling. Trust your instincts more than anything else. If you don’t feel comfortable with a situation or a person, walk away.

And last but not least, enjoy Peru with all its beauty and lovely people!

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