Safely Traveling With an Abusive Partner

Planning a trip can be stressful, but if you’re leaving town with your abusive partner, you might be more concerned about your own safety while traveling.

Emotional and physical safety while traveling with an abusive partner

We always emphasize creating a safety plan for any given scenario. Having a plan can help you cope while traveling or provide opportunities for escape if necessary. If you are traveling with your abusive partner, consider making a plan for your emotional safety. What this looks like can differ from person to person, but it might include books, music, or other favorite activities that calm you or make you comfortable. Don’t forget to incorporate self-care while on the road, even if it’s something small, like a quick meditation. offers guided meditations in varying increments of time and even has apps for Androids and iPhones.

It’s also important to consider your physical safety and health while traveling. You may want to fully know your rights and options for seeking safe/affordable healthcare while traveling away from home. Because reporting laws for medical providers are different from state to state, you may want to ask your provider what they would need to disclose to the authorities if they are made aware of it (e.g., “If someone was to disclose that someone else harmed or attempted to harm them, would you have to contact law enforcement to make a report?”) This way you can best decide what you feel comfortable and safe disclosing. If you do decide to make a report to a healthcare professional, ask if a copy of the medical report can be given to you or sent to a safe address for documentation.

If you have insurance, you can contact your health insurance company about how your benefits transfer if you seek medical care outside your network, or try searching for in-network providers in the area that you are traveling to. If you do not have health insurance or your insurance does not offer affordable care options in the area you are traveling to, you can look up information about low-cost, sliding-scale HRSA health centers.

If you are pregnant and traveling, you may want to talk to your home prenatal care provider about suggestions for staying safe during travel, including stress-reducing strategies. Keep their number in a safe place so you can contact a nurse or doctor in case of an emergency during your travel.


traveling safely with an abusive partner
traveling safely with an abusive partner

Other tips to consider:

  • Give your itinerary to a trusted friend or family member, including where you’ll be staying and all contact information.
  • If possible, keep copies of your documents (passport, driver’s license, visa, etc.) with you, and/or leave copies with a trusted friend or family member your partner will not influence.
  • Have a stash of money for yourself that you keep in a safe place. Consider keeping enough for cab fare and a night at a hotel.
  • Be aware of the available resources, such as shelters or coalitions, in the area you’re traveling to, and keep their information readily available to you. Visit for a directory of domestic violence shelters in the U.S by state. It may also be a good idea to have a list of nearby hotels you can stay in if you have to escape your partner.
  • Know the emergency number for the city/country you’re staying in.