Travelling can be an adventurous experience, but it can turn into a dangerous one if you don’t stay safe. Travel thefts, scams, and kidnapping are extremely common and you can fall prey to it just as easily as the next tourist. Fortunately, these 10 travel safety tips can help.
- Learn Common Travel Larceny Scams
According to LY Lawyers definition of larceny, it refers to different forms of thefts while traveling such as pickpocketing and luggage theft. According to a study, the highest number of travel thefts occurred in vehicles and in hotels. And out of the tourists traveling abroad, most of the thefts occurred with those in Mexico, Italy, and Canada.
Now, theft can happen to anyone but tourists are an easy target. This is why it’s important to learn some of the most common scams so that you know how to deal with them on your next trip. The most common forms of travel larceny includes:
- Police office impersonators
- Taxis or tuk tuk overcharging
- Free bracelets scam
- Pickpocketing while bumping
- ATM card scammers
- Hotel room thefts
- Public Wi-Fi hacking
So how can you prevent yourself from falling for these scammers? The rest of the tips in this post should help.
- Research The Destination Well
Before you book your trip, research your travel destination thoroughly. Check traveler reviews and local guides for safe neighborhoods to stay and eat out in. National subreddits can be an especially good research tool for getting first-hand information. If you’re planning on staying in a hotel, make sure to check out these hotel booking tips.
Also remember to check the country’s state department website along with the crime rate of your chosen location.
- Make Copies Of Important Documents
It’s important to make copies of all your travel documents like passport, plane ticket, and identification documents. Losing your documents can wreak havoc on your emotional well-being and land you in legal or logistical nightmares. So make multiple digital and hard copies just in case.
- Get Travel Insurance
If you’re a frequent traveler, it’s best to invest in travel insurance. This covers any expensive items that you may be traveling with like your phone or camera. It also includes health and medical insurance in case of emergencies.
Different insurance companies offer different plans, so choose according to your travel destination and planned activities.
- Lock Up Your Valuables
It’s a good idea to get several locks and a traveling safe that can keep your valuables safe in times of emergency. You can also ask your hotel for extra locker space and stash your valuables there.
Remember, it might be unsafe to roam around with your passport, phone, and expensive gear out in the open in some parts of the world. So even if you’re sitting in a cafe for a meal, lock your bag to your chair for extra safety.
- Don’t Attract Attention
While everyone wants to look their best and post insta-worthy pictures while traveling, it might get you some unwarranted attention. Scammers may easily spot you as a tourist and make you their next target. So try your best to blend in with the locals and read up on the local dress code of the country you’re visiting.
You might also want to carry some form of self-defense equipment like pepper spray, tasers, or pocket knives for your safety. But make sure to read up on local laws before you do so.
- Share Your Itinerary With Friends And Family
Whether you’re vacationing for a month or just taking a weekend trip, always share your itinerary, hotel number, and a local emergency with the people you trust. It can be your family, best friend, or even your bank. That’s because somebody should know where you will be in case there’s an emergency.
Also remember to add friends and family to your emergency contacts. And check in with them from time to time so that they don’t get worried about you and raise a false alarm.
- Be Prepared For An Emergency
Keep a separate wad of cash stashed somewhere safe for emergencies. This can be your socks, hotel safe, or even your underwear.
Also make it a habit to carry a first-aid kit anywhere you go. Some essential items to always keep on hand include bandages, sanitizers, antiseptic wipes, safety pins, sanitary napkins, tissues, and pain killers.
In addition, make a list of emergency phone numbers of the country you’re visiting. It can be helpful to keep both a digital and hard copy of this list.
- Be Aware Of Your Surroundings
Staying aware of your surroundings is crucial for travel safety. For starters, don’t let strangers inside your hotel room even if they tell you that the hotel staff sent them. Always double check with the front desk to be safe. You can also add a jammer to your hotel room door for an added layer of protection.
And when you’re roaming outside, check the visiting hours of the place you want to visit in advance. That’s because many taxi drivers scam tourists by telling them that the attraction they wish to visit is closed or will open later.
Finally, ask locals or your hotel management for directions to a certain place instead of cab drivers and keep checking your location on Google maps as you travel.
- Stay Away From Public Wi-Fi’s
Public WiFi can be tempting to use but they are the main source of hacking these days. All your online private information can be shared with hackers within a matter of minutes on a public Wifi. So it’s best to download a travel VPN so that your information is secure, or carry your own portable device.