Safety tips for night travel in Nigeria
I traveled at Night for the first time last week and it felt so good. What turned out to be a bad experience eventually afforded me the opportunity to tick off something that should legit be on my bucket list.
Fam, I had fun traveling at night and in a long time, I felt so free and reckless, in a good way. Some of the people in the car seemed to be pros at night travel.
It seemed to me like they frequented that route a lot. Work, possibly. I kept thinking to myself, if my mummy and my daddy are able to come to the knowledge of this, I am going to be forever in trouble.
It all started with missing my flight with Overland Airways. By the way, fam, I want to keep to road travel until where I am is developed. Overland is the only airline that operates here, so sad. That was the beginning of my story and I ended up on a night bus.
Interstate travel by night might be very scary. Your life is technically in the hands of a driver who might sleep on the steering if village people are involved. God forbid tho’.
Below are a few safety tips for those who are planning to embark on a night journey for the first time.
1. Keep your expensive jewelry from plain sight.
Trust me, this isn’t the night to wear gold or expensive jewelry. Wear simple clothing, comfortable enough for you to stretch, unzip to take a leak and be free. Tuck all your expensive things in your carry on bag.
2. Board your bus in the garage.
It is safer and better to board your bus where there is proper documentation of passengers. Grabbing a ride off the road is a no-no. Your night travel is that one journey you should be willing to spend and pay for normal interstate bus travel by road. Read this blog post on how to save money for travel
3. Fasten your seat belt if you are in front with the driver.
Hopefully, you are not the one to scream at minor issues or confuse the driver. Usually, it is always good to have the person in front as an alert individual who is also a great conversationalist.
For the good of everyone, be sure that is who is in front and if that is you, be quick to take that spot. I used to wonder why they would not allow women to sit in front even for normal bus travels. I discovered much later that this is because we are bad at absorbing shock.
4. Make sure your car is in great shape
Of course, you want to make sure this is sorted out as to the best of your ability if you are traveling in your car. Have a spare tyre, make sure all your vehicle documents are up to date and there is enough fuel.
5. Never make a stop at lonely spots
On no account should you stop your car at lonely, dark places. If you are going in your car, move to where there are enough people if you want to ease yourself. Also, strongly discourage a careless driver who is about to put the bus in harm’s way by parking at a lonely spot.
6. Make arrangements for transportation after you drop off
Is someone coming to pick you up at the garage? Are you going to use the accommodation service for the transport line till morning? If it is a relatively safe place, will you board a vehicle or bike to your destination? Be sure all of these things are settled to avoid being fidgety. Wicked people generally take advantage of people when they are vulnerable.
If you are in your car, you might sleep in if you can’t find a hotel. Be sure the environment is safe with street lights or with a police station around. Also, take turns to sleep if you are more than one. It is to ensure that at least one person is on the lookout for danger.
7. Tell people about your travel
In my case, only my sister knew. A few friends, maybe. But they are not close enough for emergencies. I suggest that you do better than I did. They can be sure to keep tabs on you until you arrive safely to your destination.
Ever done an interstate or long journey night travel by road before? How did it feel like? Would you mind sharing other safety tips I missed?
Related: How to pack light for travel