It is very safe for solo female travelers in London – I lived there for a couple of years as a single female. I went out on my own day and night (areas I knew though) and using public transport. Here are a few tips on solo female travel London…
Solo Female Travel London – Transport
Don’t get minicabs – they are way too expensive anyway. Just get an Oyster Card and use the Tube. The Tubes have cameras on them and I always felt extremely safe using the tube. A few pointers on London transport…
- Avoid getting the tube on your own after consuming alcohol.
- Make sure that you pre-plan your route.
- Make sure that your Oyster Card is topped up with sufficient funds for the tube zones that you want to travel through.
- Check for tube strikes and make sure you know the times of the last Tube (they do not run all night currently, although this may change).
- There are alarm points that you should use if you feel threatened.
- Not all Tube stations have disabled access, so check this if you need to.
For more on safety on London transport, click here.
Compare hotels in London on booking.com or Agoda. I also recommend that you visit the Broke Backpacker’s site for the best hotels in London.
Wimbledon Tube Station. Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons
Dress in London
If you are worried about attracted unwanted male attention, just avoid wearing tiny tops and short skirts – they will give the wrong impression about you. However, the dress code is very liberal in the UK, and you have a right to wear what you want.
Of course, as a single woman, just keep your wits about you. No going around unknown areas or dark alleys late at night and you should be fine. There’s a risk everywhere really.
Solo Travel London – Safe Areas and Areas to Avoid
Most of the central London tourist destinations are relatively safe, but be aware of pickpockets. Check for terrorism threats which are rare, but do exist in central London.
China Town is amazing, as is Portobello Road.
East London (Brick Lane, Shoreditch) used to have a bad reputation, but are now very artsy up-and-coming areas. You will be safe there.
Camden is also safe, but expect to be offered drugs such as Marijuana! It is illegal in the UK, so just say ‘no thanks’ and walk on.
West London is generally very safe, including Ealing, Richmond, and Kew. You will probably be unlikely to visit these areas as a tourist unless you want to go to Kew Gardens.
You will want to avoid areas such as Hackney, Peckham, Brixton, and Tottenham, particularly at night and on your own. I have had a night out in Brixton and it was fine, but I didn’t go alone and was not drunk late at night. The crime in these areas is usually teenage knife crime or drug-related. As a tourist, you will have no need to go to these areas, and staying within the boundaries of the circle line, you will be fine.
London is Safe for Female Travel
Compared to other big cities, London is very safe for female solo travel. I had an amazing time there and highly recommend it. If you would like to read more, find out how to do London on a Budget.