A study of the world’s most dangerous countries for women traveling alone reveals the good, the bad and the ugly
There’s hearsay. There are personal anecdotes from other travelers. There are specific worries. Then, there are the hard facts. We’ve gathered data from a variety of trusted international sources to create a “Women’s Danger Index” that will help you find the worst (and safest) countries for solo female travel.
At the end of the article we also have 42 tips on how women can stay safe while traveling alone.
Ranking the top 50 countries with the most international tourists by a grand total of eight different factors, our “Women’s Danger Index” was compiled using the following data sources:
Gallup World Poll (2018): Percentage of women who feel safe walking alone at night = 2 points
Equal Measures 2030 (2018): Female victims of intentional homicide index = 2 points
UN Women (2016): Lifetime Non-Partner Sexual Violence = 1 point
Georgetown Institute (2017/2018): Lifetime Intimate Partner Violence = 1 point
Georgetown Institute (2017/2018): Legal Discrimination = 1 point
World Economic Forum (2017): Global Gender Gap = 1 point
UN Development Program (2017): Gender Inequity = 1 point
OECD (2018): Attitudes Toward Violence Against Women Survey = 1 point
To measure safety abroad, one cannot look at only data on street safety, rape or violence. It also depends on the general attitude of the culture, minutiae of the legal system, and systematic oppression of local women. These issues can affect everything, from easily getting a taxi alone to having your voice be heard in a conversation to even needing a male escort for your personal safety. A lot on our list, such as attitudes toward partner violence, may not affect solo female travelers directly, but these factors are a good indication of overall attitudes within the culture.
Sadly, not one country received an “A” which indicates we have a long way to go before there is true equality between men and women on Earth. Thankfully, there are many signs that things are improving and there is light at the end of the tunnel.
Please note: We gave both the “percentage of women who feel safe walking alone at night” and the “female victims of intentional homicide index” a double weighting score because they are very good indicators of safety for foreign female travelers and are more likely to be highly accurate since it isn’t “shameful” to admit. Whereas, non-partner and intimate partner sexual violence are obviously strong indicators for rape but the seriously widespread underreporting (to differing degrees per country) makes it hard to justify double weight because it could skew the results more than is fair.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has made it clear that his visit to the United States may take place this summer.
“Discussions are under way. Everyone has a busy calendar, they are looking into dates. It may happen in summer, as I understand,” he told the Interfax-Ukraine news agency on the way from Mariyinsky Palace to the Presidential Office after the Ukraine-EU summit.
In the middle of June, Kurt Volker, the United States Special Representative for Ukraine Negotiations, said that the exact date of Zelensky’s visit to Washington, D.C., had not been set yet. “Donald Trump sent an invitation to President Zelensky to visit the White House. However, the dates of this visit are to be agreed,” he said.
Ukraine increased imports of coal and anthracite coal (HS code 2701) by 9.9%, or 1.719 million tonnes, in January-November 2018 year-over-year, to 19.095 million tonnes. Coal shipments over the period under review were estimated at $2.693 billion, which was 10.8% more than in January-November 2017 ($2.431 billion), Ukraine’s State Fiscal Service said.
In particular, coal bought from the Russian Federation (61.91% of all imports) was estimated at $1.667 billion, from the United States (29.94%) at $806.349 million, Canada (4.78%) at $128.608 million, and other countries (3.37%) at $90.865 million.
In addition, Ukraine in January-November 2018 exported 63,617 tonnes of coal and anthracite to the tune of $8.627 million, including to Russia ($4.597 million), Slovakia ($3.201 million), Moldova ($0.715 million), and other countries ($0.114 million).
As reported, Ukraine plans in 2018 to increase import of steam coal by 11.3% compared to 2017, to 5.669 million tonnes.
In particular, it plans to buy 4.882 million tonnes of coal from Russia (a rise of 29.6% from 2017), 664,000 tonnes from the United States (a rise of 47.7%), and 123,000 tonnes from South Africa (a fall of 83.8%).
In 2011, Ukraine’s coal and anthracite imports totaled $2.761 billion and exports $775.109 million, in 2012: $2.637 billion and $609.392 million, respectively. These indicators in 2013 were $1.974 billion and $737.009 million, respectively, in 2014: $1.773 billion and $521.017 million, in 2015: $1.632 billion and $53.651 million, in 2016: $1.467 billion and $44.762 million, and in 2017: $2.744 billion and $105.494 million, respectively.
Ukraine exported conventional weapons to six countries under contracts in 2017, the Ukrainian State Service of Export Control said in a report detailing international transfers of individual types of Ukrainian armaments last year. The figures published by the Ukrainian State Service of Export Control since 2004 are a key to the annual United Nations Register of Conventional Arms.
According to the latest report, in 2017 Ukraine exported 16 units of armored military hardware, namely 16 Oplot main battle tanks to Thailand, and also more than 17,000 small arms and over 800 light weapons to the United States, Uzbekistan, Jordan, Mongolia, and Turkey.
According to the figures, the main importer of Ukrainian small arms and light weapons in 2017 was the United States, which bought 15,040 automatic weapons and submachine guns, and also 790 portable anti-tank rifles and grenade launchers. Uzbekistan purchased 2,000 automatic weapons and submachine guns from Ukraine last year. A total of 22 portable anti-tank rifles and grenade launchers, two hand-held under-barrel and mounted grenade launchers, and one revolver were exported to Jordan, ten rifles were delivered to Mongolia, and three trigger mechanisms for anti-aircraft guns were exported to Turkey.
The effect of the Generalized System of Preferences, which allows for duty-free import of more than 3,500 types of goods from Ukraine to the United States, has been suspended for 155 types of Ukrainian goods from April 26, the Ukrainian Economic Development and Trade Ministry reported on Saturday, May 5. “A total of 155 types of goods fall under the restrictions, in particular, some products of the food, light, woodworking industry, engineering, and some electrical appliances,” the ministry said.
The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative enacted these restrictions from April 26 this year, 120 days after the publication of the respective presidential proclamation of December 22, 2017.
“The Economic Development and Trade Ministry has been in constant dialogue with the U.S. government and is working to resolve the problem. At the same time, the lifting of the restrictions largely depends on the adoption by the Verkhovna Rada of bill No. 7466, known as the bill on the organization of collective management,” the report says. It recalls that the bill drafted by the ministry is aimed at establishing an effective and transparent system of collective management of property rights in the field of copyright and related rights in Ukraine. The document was adopted at first reading on March 1. On April 19, MPs began its consideration at second reading.