Women travelers may face challenges as they move from a location where they understand the rights and the cultural and societal expectations for women, to locations where these rights and expectations are different.
The World Health Organization published on November 21, 2014 the article Call for urgent action to address global crisis of violence against women and girls. “Every single day, many women and girls across the world face violence… including intimate partner violence, rape, female genital mutilation, trafficking, and forced marriage… Estimates suggest that one in three women globally have experienced either physical or sexual violence from a partner, or sexual violence by a non-partner at some point in their lives…”
Many women travel abroad without incidents. Understanding the culture, expectations and rights women have in the chosen destination can go a long way in ensuring an uneventful trip. Some questions you may want to ask yourself are:
- Is it safe for me to go out alone? at night?
- What areas at my destination should I avoid?
- How are women expected to behave?
- How are women expected to dress?
- What are the cultural norms regarding friendship, dating and sexual relationships?
- What are the safety and self-protection practices women follow at my destination?
- Do people in my host country have stereotypes of women from my home country?
The following are some options you have to get answers:
- Get a good guide book for your destination. Some of these will have a section for women travelers.
- Request feedback from other UT Dallas female students who have traveled to that location before and find out what their experience was like. Contact Education Abroad at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Request to get in touch with other UT Dallas female students whose home country is your planned destination. Contact Intercultural Programs at ISSOPrograms@utdallas.edu.
You may also find helpful the following resources:
- Traveler toolkit.
- SAFETI Sexual Harassment and Prevention in US Students Traveling Abroad article.
- U.S. Department of State Information for Women Travelers.
- Canadian Government A Woman’s Safe-Travel Guide.
- UT Dallas
The information on this page may change without notice