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  1. Default Traveling Safely from East Coast to Arizona

    Hi! I'm planning a southern-route road trip from Maryland to Arizona in November. I'm very excited about this trip and will be traveling alone (female). I plan to travel on main highways but am concerned about traveling alone (have seen too many movies) and am hoping that I won't experience not being able to get a signal on my cell phone in some areas. Have any other women made a solo trip like this who could offer some tips on safety?

    Hope to hear from you!

    Susan

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,063

    Default just for you

    Welcome to the RTA forum!

    We've had several people in the same situation with similar concerns, and the best part is, they've done their trips and shared their sucess stories!

    Here's is Babybird's Planning thread (first solo trip and scared as hell) and then here is the field report from her trip. I'd also read this thread and this article for more great soloing tips.

    Hopefully, those should help ease your fears a bit. Let us know if you have any more questions.

  3. Default

    Thank you so much for your response. I read the threads you suggested and found them very helpful! I've got a lot of planning and exploring of your website to do until I leave. :)

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    South of England.
    Posts
    10,747

    Default Can we help ?

    Quote Originally Posted by offtoarizona View Post
    I've got a lot of planning and exploring of your website to do until I leave. :)
    Hi Susan,

    If you need any other help planning your itinerary be sure to let us know, we maybe able to help you piece it together.

    Dave.

  5. Default

    Thanks much, Dave! My biggest concern is always having access to my cell phone. I don't want to hit any "dead zones" in the middle of the desert. I do plan to stay on major highways (I believe highway 40 is the one).

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Green County, Wisconsin
    Posts
    13,063

    Default not universal

    While cell phone coverage is pretty good along the major interstates, coverage is not 100% for any carrier. However, since the roads are always well traveled, you should never have to wait too long for help, should you need it.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Western/Central Massachusetts
    Posts
    1,703

    Default Cell coverage

    Quote Originally Posted by offtoarizona View Post
    Thanks much, Dave! My biggest concern is always having access to my cell phone. I don't want to hit any "dead zones" in the middle of the desert. I do plan to stay on major highways (I believe highway 40 is the one).
    Sounds like you'll be on I-40 for much of the trip ("highway" 40 is US-40, a different road). Most cell providers have a map on their webpages that show their coverage. I don't think there are too many places near major highways without coverage. I-40 is a popular route and you should be in good shape.

  8. Default

    Hi Guys:

    Thanks again for the info! So glad there should be adequate coverage. I have an incredible fear of breaking down and having a stranger approach. Again, too many movies!

  9. #9

    Default

    Hi offtoarizona,

    I'm currently on the road for my first cross-country trip and I'm doing it solo, and before I left, I had the same concerns, including cellular coverage. I don't know what carrier you have, but I have AT&T, and coverage was pretty decent even on some of the more rural routes. I was on I-40 for a while, and coverage was pretty good, but everyone is right about there being no need to worry.

    Even when I would get hit the occasional dead zone (which I only noticed on some of the more rural paved roads and highways), cars weren't too few and far between, so I felt like if anything happened, there were people passing by who would notice a problem.

    Just don't go with any strangers and simply ask them to call for help for you when they get to a coverage area or a town. One of the suggestions I came across when planning this trip was to make a sign for the back window saying, "Call for police" and have that handy just in case you're in a dead zone - just make sure not to leave your car.

    All of the advice here on this forum and site is fantastic and was a huge comfort to me before I got on my way, and since hitting the road, I feel a lot better and more confident about being a woman traveling alone.

  10. Default

    Well, your experience has made me feel much better! The last time I was this adventurous on my own was when I was in my early 20s, and I'm now in my late 40s. After I had my son in 1988, I calmed down a bit and stopped driving alone on trips at night.

    You mentioned the "Call for police" sign, and I think I've seen those kinds of signs already printed up, so I'll take a look for one. I think I'd like to get some pepper spray or something like that, too. I'm very wary of strangers, so I don't plan to talk to any along the way, which is unfortunate. I'm sure waitresses and other workers in places will be OK, though. In today's world, you just don't know the motive of many seemingly kind strangers, and my nature is to trust everyone--but as I said, fear, especially from movies when I was younger, has taken over. I'm hoping that maybe that goes away, because I think I'd get a more full experience getting to know others along the way!

    Thanks so much for your reply!!

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