self-defense kit

Traveling abroad and at home can be a wonderfully enriching thing—something that allows us to experience as much of the world around us as possible. The experiences gained from traveling can provide a lifetime of positive experiences, but horrible travel stories can similarly dog our heels for many years to come.

One negative travel experience some people may have had, at some point in life, is traveling to an unsafe place. While you can have a general idea of what to expect, if you’re not physically prepared, you may not be able to protect yourself if forced into an unfortunate scenario. That’s why it’s so important to have a self-defense kit so you are well equipped for whatever situation arrives. 

You never know when you’ll stumble across an unsafe area or situation. To properly protect yourself, you should consider traveling with the following personal safety devices and accessories. Consider making use of the following 11 non-lethal weapons when traveling—it just might protect you when you least expect it.  

1. Self-Defense Training

While not a personal safety device, think of self-defense training as a necessary self-defense accessory. Such classes will provide you with the knowledge required to keep you safe, whether defending against specific types of attacks or learning which scenarios to avoid. Moreover, classes can teach you how to safely deploy the following non-lethal weapons.

2. Stun Guns

Easy to deploy and effective from a distance, stun guns and stun devices are perfect for incapacitating aggressors while giving you the chance to escape. While legal in most states throughout the U.S., you should brush up on state and global laws prior to carrying a stun gun. While it’s a great idea to protect yourself, it’s equally important to stay within the protocols of the law.  

3. Flashlight

If you’re ever traveling through a darkened area, you can utilize your flashlight to light the path, all while letting others know of your presence. The device can be used to identify possible aggressors and strangers, too. And, if attacked, it can be used as a last line of defense, as you can turn it into a physical weapon.
 
4. Stun Gun Flashlights Combo

The pairing of two excellent items, stun gun flashlights provide the perfect means to protect yourself and deter crime. Disguised as a simple flashlight, this non-lethal weapon can be deployed whenever necessary, allowing you to stop any aggressor in their tracks.

5. Smartphone Apps

The means of staying safe has only increased with the continued growth of technology. That now extends to personal safety smartphone apps, which can employ GPS tracking and SOS functions to keep you safe whenever traveling by yourself. Rather than taking risks while out walking through a new city or hiking in the mountains alone, you can keep an app within reach that can give you a lifeline back to protective services.

6. Pepper Spray

Pepper spray is popular for a reason: It’s deployable from a distance and is extremely painful for any recipient, forcefully spraying liquid with millions of Scoville heat units (SHU) into their face. Most canisters offer keychain attachments, too, making it easy to carry one unnoticed while being able to use it in an instant.
 
If you’re traveling via plane to get elsewhere in the States or somewhere abroad, you should know that the TSA does allow you to carry pepper spray, but it must be a 4-fluid-ounce canister that is packed within checked luggage (it cannot be stored in a carry-on bag). Furthermore, prior to purchase or carry, you should check on pepper spray legality by state to guarantee you don’t unintentionally break the law.

7. Pepper Guns

Regarding non-lethal weapons, pepper guns pack quite the effective punch. Often deployable with accuracy up to 20 feet, pepper guns can easily be stored in a purse or bag and used for protection in a moment’s notice, allowing you to remain safe while avoiding dangerous scenarios.

8. Expandable Batons

Easy to store by your hip, in your jacket, or in the pocket of your purse, expandable batons can be a great form of protection, whether used for intimidation or for physical defense. Often expanding from 16” to 31”, expandable batons can help keep you safe while on the road, all while providing some distance between you and an assailant.

9. Keychain Weapons

When considering self-defense weapons, you want accessible ones when you need them. Some people have taken to carrying their keys between their fingers when walking alone at night. To enhance this protective method, consider adding a keychain weapon to your keys. Pronged and sharpened, this can be wielded in an instant, allowing you to fend off an attacker with something more effective, durable, and harmful than just your house key.

10. Kubotans

Easily attachable to your keychain or the belt loop of your pants, a kubotan—designed by Grandmaster Takayuki Kubota—is an effective pressure-point weapon that can be wielded either to stabilize your fist while punching or to apply pressure against wrist locks and sensitive joints of the body. Some of them are designed to look like pens, making them inconspicuous items that can be deployed immediately without bringing attention to you like the sound of a stun gun might.

11. Self-Defense Knives

Sitting in a murky place among non-lethal weapons, self-defense knives make a great last resort. While you never want to have to use this type of weapon on a person, it’s a self-defense device that could save your life. Thankfully, in some cases, just flashing the knife at an aggressor can cause them to back down. And, just as you should consider carrying a knife, you should understand how to use it and how to defend yourself in case an attacker has one of their own.

Self-defense comes in many different forms, and there’s no way of knowing which is right for you unless you learn more and try them out. Consider taking a self-defense course before you travel next. Moreover, consult professionals to better understand which non-lethal weapons are right for your needs.

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