"Travel Safety 101" is a carousel posted on Marjani Lane's IG page. This is the all text version of all of the slides.
*traveling alone to non-monogamous events
Non-monogamous events like conferences are increasing in number every year. However, one thing that people tend to throw out of the window when attending these events is their safety. In niche communities, sometimes there is a false sense of security and trust because of shared identities. while major events are great to attend for platonic, romantic, and sexual opportunities - don't forget to be vigilant about your safety especially when traveling alone.
At the airport, the hotel, driving in a new (or familiar) area, in public, at the events - pay attention to your surroundings. Try to avoid being absorbed by your music, festivities, cell phone, and other people that you lose sight of the situation.
Always identify your entries & exits - this can be done without being noticed by arriving early to look around or walking/driving around the property. You may even be able to squeeze it into your networking by walking around the room.
Watch people - not in the "creepy" way of course. Observe the actions of people around you. if someone seems agitated or acting abnormal for the event.
Put the phone down - you can still take a pictures or text your partners - just don't have your head stuck in your phone. A lot of situational awareness is lost when we are focused on our phones.
Take the headphones off - ...or keep one out or the volume down. So much information about your environment is lost if you cannot hear due to music.
Get Your Own Shit
Traveling can be very expensive, especially when you are doing it alone...however it is probably in your best interest to get your own room and car arrangements. It may be tempting to share a room or Airbnb or carpool with someone you vibe with or kind of know - but it is not the safest - even if you share the same gender. There is a chance for you to get stranded, be in uncomfortable sleeping conditions, have things stolen from you, incur damages costs and more. Not everyone at these non-monogamous events practices how you practice. There could be a situation where you decided to share a hotel suite with someone you met in a forum or local meet & greet. upon arrival you find out while this is a polyamorous event, and they are polyamorous - that they also swing or engage in group s*x. they have decided to turn the suite into a meet up spot for those wanting to swing after the event.
This may seem extreme, but it has happened and it may be well out of your comfort zone.
tout ce qui brille n'est pas or!* - all that glitters is not gold
Just because someone is generous and nice - does not mean they are. If your preference is couples, be aware that some het couples will use the woman as a lure - because people tend to trust women over men. "i'll go because a woman is going..." Just because someone seems to be ethical and respectable in the community, does not mean that they are. This means your favorite content creators, influencers, writers, and more are not necessarily the people you think they are.
Limit Your Trust
Whether it be alcohol, "vibes", or excitement from communing with likeminded individuals, people tend to hand out trust quickly at these events. Do not do that. No one needs to know your hotel & room number. no one needs to know what type of car you rented. no one needs to know your every plan while on the trip. These may seem frivolous, but questions like this can be easily inserted in a conversation and just as easily answered without noticing. The same rules you would apply at a bar/club, do at these events. Do not leave your drinks unattended, EVEN with the people you may have connected with at the event. if the location allows for it, carry your drink in a travel bottle for better control. Manage your liquor (& other substances) intake. this is not the time to "try new sh*t" or get so inebriated that you cannot get to the hotel safely. Make a plan and stick to it. don't let other people persuade you to change your plan.