The lure of travel can be one of the most exciting adventures of your life, it is exciting and life enriching. The adrenalin rush and excitement of being in a strange new place, discovering and experiencing things you only see on TV or read through publications can easily make you forget about some risk, safety and travel security while abroad – it is very easy to get caught up in the thrill of adventure!
Below you will find some essential travel safety tips to ensure that you’ll have a memorable vacation for all the right reasons.
Research Is Golden
As I have mentioned in several of my post, planning ahead can make or break your trip. Do your research with diligence and get to know the country or your destination well before you arrive. Traveler reviews online such as tripadvisor, google reviews, or even yelp can be a wealth of information. When you have arrived and checked in your hotel, you may also casually ask your local hotel or even restaurant staff for useful information and tips about area safety, places to avoid, and places to venture.
Below I have provided a link to check Travel Advisories from the U.S. Department of State which is very useful especially if you are still planning your vacation.
Another useful tip to keep in mind when vacationing abroad is to know important emergency numbers in case of emergency such as:
- Embassy or Consulate
- Police Emergency Number
- Hotel Emergency Number
People who look like they’re from out of town are especially vulnerable to crime, so try to blend in as much as you can. Choose inconspicuous clothing that won’t attract attention. Move to a safe corner when looking at maps and approach people politely but cautiously if you need to ask for directions. Wear clothing and gear that will make it more difficult for pickpockets to steal money and other personal items.
Have Important Documents Copied & Secure Your Valuables
You never know when you might need a copy of your passport, driver’s license or another form of identification. Scan these documents to save online and print out several hard copies. That way, you won’t be scrambling to find proper documentation if you need to get home. When you’re out and about exploring during your vacation, make sure all valuables are safely stashed away. Most hotels have a safe deposit box in the room or if not, you may ask the concierge or front desk staff, this is better than carrying your passport all over the place while you are exploring especially in cities where they cautioned you for pick-pockets. If you don’t want the chambermaid or house keeping crew to clean your room for the day, just put the “Do Not Disturb sign on the outside of your door, keeping your blinds and windows closed.
Stay Connected with Family & Friends
Whether you’re going on an overnight trip or a month-long getaway, Keeping your family and friends back home informed of your whereabouts is a great idea. Days before your departure, email or text a copy of your itinerary either to your brother, sister, mom or dad or to your most trusted friend who can periodically check where in the world you are. Check in regularly with your contacts so they know where you are either through text or email. Posting memorable adventures, images, buildings, and moments in your social media platforms can also help your family and friends stay on track as to where you are! Keeping all your loved ones apprised of your whereabouts especially being in a foreign land is always a good idea.
Know Your Surroundings and..
Always use common sense, this innate human attribute is universal and knows no cultural, racial, language or ethnic boundaries. One of the biggest rewards of traveling is the experience it gives you and the ability to meet new people, learn and immerse yourself into their culture. It is one of its biggest joys, however, do not let your guard down even in the most enjoyable moments, always have an eye on your personal belongings, always be polite and kind but keeping in mind to use your better judgment when talking to strangers. If someone near you is acting suspiciously, or if you feel uncomfortable, go find the nearest exit or leave the area immediately. In most occasion, your gut feeling is always right, use your better judgment and trust it.
There are lots of travel safety tips out there, they are all very handy and useful especially if you are a first time traveler, it all boils down to using your better judgment and common sense. No matter how many precautions you take or how prepared you are, the unexpected can or may happen but don’t let this thought run through your head constantly – Live the moment! Enjoy and have fun! As I have mentioned in my previous post ” Let’s get you on that first trip“, you can give yourself some extra peace of mind by purchasing a travel insurance, a precautionary cushion that is always good to have especially when you are miles and miles away from home. I have listed them again below for your reference. Compare and shop around for what you feel comfortable and suits your budget. Please know that I am not affiliated with these companies nor get any compensation but I have used them both in my travels and both have great coverage.
I hope these pointers and tips help you with your trip and help you travel safely. Whether this is one of your many trips or the adventure you have been waiting for all your life, It is my hope that you apply these suggestions as you venture out there, to see and enjoy some of the best experiences and moments you’ll ever have outside the comfort of your home. Memories that will enrich your life and expand your view of the world.
Enjoy and have an incredible time!