Summer is here! Many of us are already enjoying long afternoons in the beer garden and BBQs with friends after what feels like the longest winter. It’s great to be out catching up with everyone again, and with the warm weather, many of us will be choosing to stretch our legs and walk to our destinations rather than using the car. If you need to walk it’s always best to pair up or walk with a group if possible, but if you do find yourself walking alone, here are some tips for an enjoyable and safe strol.
Wear appropriate footwear
So after months of lockdown and restrictions, we can finally hit the town again and enjoy a night out. You may be tempted to dust off those heels and smart shoes. However, if you are walking to or from your destination, consider swapping them for a more comfortable option for the journey ahead. If you really don’t want to team your cute new summer togs with trainers, consider taking a bag with some flat practical shoes that you can slip into when you arrive or leave your destination. Not only will you be able to flee or speed up should you feel uncomfortable, but your feet will also thank you for the comfy walk!
Stick to the main roads
When walking alone, always stick to well lit, populated routes. There may be a shortcut across a field or an alley you can cut through to shorten your journey but in reality, cutting corners to save 10 minutes isn’t worth the risk.
Plan your route
If you know where you are going, you’ll appear more confident and will be less likely to find yourself in unfamiliar surroundings. Review your route before leaving your destination to ensure you stay on track and save the journey to your phone using an app. If you find yourself a little lost, don’t wander the streets, find the nearest petrol station, shop or restaurant and ask for directions.
Phone a friend – but avoid texting!
If you’ve got more than a short trek home, call a friend or family member on the way for a chat. A conversation will put you at ease if you feel nervous. You can also let them know where you are and where you are walking to and from for your safety. If it’s possible, stay on the line until you reach your destination. Avoid texting and playing games while texting to ensure you are aware and alert of your surroundings. You can also share your location with a friend as an extra safety precaution.
Walk with confidence and purpose
Would-be attackers are looking for easy targets, so don’t be one. Walk with your head held high and adopt a confident posture. This will silently intimidate anyone looking for trouble. If you stroll and look down at your phone, you may appear an easy target. Do not stop to check your phone or map until you are in a well-lit, populated, safe area.
Don’t wear headphones
Although listening to your favourite tunes seems ideal for a walk alone, we would recommend you put those earbuds away. You’ll want to be aware and alert of your surroundings, especially after dark. So save the headphones for your morning jog or busy commute.
We want all our customers and friends to enjoy the upcoming summer evenings safely. If you are visiting us, always let someone know where you are going and when you’ll be back and walk with a friend where possible.