Learn how to keep you and your family safe while you travel with these 5 essential tips!

Whether you travel for business or pleasure, circumnavigate the globe with a backpack or fly first class, or enjoy visiting the neighboring state or foreign lands far away, travel comes with certain risks. You’re away from home, maybe on your own, and find yourself more vulnerable than usual. To help you enjoy the fun and exciting experience travel should be, here are five essential tips for your travel safety.  

5 Essential Tips for Travel Safety

July 26, 2017

Keep you and your family safe and secure when you travel with these 5 great tips!

Whether you travel for business or pleasure, circumnavigate the globe with a backpack or fly first class, or enjoy visiting the neighboring state or foreign lands far away, travel comes with certain risks. You’re away from home, maybe on your own, and find yourself more vulnerable than usual. To help you enjoy the fun and exciting experience travel should be, here are five essential tips for your travel safety.

1. Keep connected, but keep it quiet.

Keep close friends and family updated on where you are, what you are doing, and where you are going next. This assures that they know where you are, and when to expect to hear from you. Leave a copy of your itinerary with them, and include contact information for your accommodations, people you’re visiting, and any other information that will help them track you down if necessary.

However, as much fun as it is to share with everyone; do not announce your travel plans on social media, or any other public place. To the wrong people, this can be an open invitation to visit your home while you’re away.

2. Pack and carry your valuables wisely.

When you pack or carry your belongings around, keep in mind that you could somehow lose your bag, suitcase, purse or backpack.

Before you leave, make copies of the front and back of your credit cards, ID, and insurance documents. Leave a copy with close friends or family, and put a copy in a safe, cloud-based storage, so you can access it from anywhere.

Don’t keep all your payment methods, IDs and documents in one location, and keep a secret emergency cash stash hidden away somewhere deep in your luggage. Use your hotel safe, and only carry with you what you’ll need when you venture out.

Never put anything you can’t stand losing in your checked luggage. Most airlines will not reimburse you for jewelry, electronics or other valuables if they lose your suitcase. Spend a little extra time securing your luggage when on public transportation, so you’re less likely to nod off and wake up to a picked clean or missing bag.

3. Bring a door stop wedge.

Whether you’re staying in a hotel, Air B&B, or couch surfing, you want to feel safe when settling in for the night. A door stop wedge is a cheap, easy, and portable security measure that will keep accidental or intentional intruders out of your room. As an added bonus, you’ll never wake up to housekeeping barging in on you again.

4. Buy travel insurance.

Travel insurance offers peace of mind before and during travel, and is the indispensable ingredient that will save your vacation, and your wallet, should things go awry.

Travel insurance doesn’t have to be a costly investment. Before booking your trip, check if any of your credit cards include travel insurance if you use them to pay for your trip. Also check with the organizations where you have your other insurances, as they might offer low-cost coverage as part of your policy.

Once you have coverage, there’s no need to add the additional insurances offered by airlines and other vendors. And remember; valuables, such as jewelry and electronics in your checked luggage, might not be covered. Keep these things in your carry-on. 

5. Keep your wits about you.

Meeting and engaging with locals is one of the absolute greatest benefits of traveling. Don’t be afraid to spend time and interact with the local population. They’re the ones that can truly teach you about the place and people you’re visiting, advise you on anything from cab fares to drinking water, show you how the locals really live, and maybe even become your friend. However, especially if you’re traveling alone, always keep your wits about you.

Don’t go anywhere with someone alone, and don’t divulge too much about your travel arrangements or yourself. If you’re recommended a local spot, look it up online or check with the hotel staff, tourist information, or police department before going. If you’re told to stay away from certain places, take the advice. Try to dress and look as local as possible. If you can’t pass as native, dress appropriately, walk with purpose, and act like you know the place well. Stay aware of your surroundings, and don’t drink too much.

Following these five essential tips for travel safety, you should be prepared for a positive and carefree experience. The world is your oyster—go explore!

This article was adapted from our Aspire! member newsletter. See all the articles here

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