Each day thousands of people escape the repetition of everyday life in search of more exciting and adventurous escapades. Many of these travelers return bearing fond memories of their journey, but a small percentage of tourists aren’t so lucky. A growing number of travelers are becoming targets for crime abroad, causing stress, panic and ultimately ruined holidays. Thankfully fairly simple precautions can prevent you from becoming a victim. Whether traveling alone, with a friend or family, travel safety should be foremost on your mind.
For peace of mind, never leave home without travel insurance. Should you run into any trouble, insurance will provide you with immediate access to advice and financial help. Quality travel insurance can cover anything from a lost bag, to emergency medical attention or delayed flights. Research the many different options available and seek advice from your travel agent. Ensure you have sufficient cover and always read the fine print within the policy before signing it.
Guard your passport
Never leave your passport in your luggage or handbag, keep it on your person as often as possible. Aim to have your passport in a waterproof bag and kept within a zipped, hidden pocket. In the event your passport is lost or stolen, report the incident to your embassy immediately. From here they are able to start the process of reissuing your legal documents. This is neither a simple nor pleasant experience, so do your best to prevent the situation altogether. Also ensure you have photocopies of all documents and keep two spare passport photos with you.
Leave your jewelry at home
Never travel with a vast amount of jewelry, expensive watches or high tech gadgets. Displaying wealth can make you a quick target for pick pockets, car jacking’s, robberies or worse. Hide jewelry under clothing, or even better, leave it at home. The most important items you will need are a simple wrist watch and an i.d or medical bracelet. This rule also applies to money, avoid carrying too many credit cards or large amounts of cash with you, take only what you need and never let anyone see inside your wallet.
Never leave your luggage unattended
Not only is this increasing the risk of having your belongings stolen, it also makes you an easy target for trafficking. Always keep luggage with you and if you must put it down, keep one foot on the handle. Ensure your luggage is clearly named, utilizing covered luggage tags and padlocks on the zippers. This will prevent items from being removed as well as foreign items being put it. When it comes to your suitcases you can never be too careful, be aware of people watching or following you in airports and report suspicious behavior to the security personnel on guard immediately.
Know the location of your Embassy
In the event you run into trouble, your national embassy is going to be the first point of call. If distressed, locating the building will be a dubious task, so think ahead and research the location before you arrive. Photocopying directions and keeping them in your bag is not a bad idea either and if you’re planning an extended stay in a particular country, take the time to visit the embassy soon after you arrive.
Research the country first
Do some extensive research on the internet before you book your tickets, travel agents are not always so forthcoming with the negative aspects of a trip. Check for danger or high risk zones, gather information from other tourists who have visited the areas you wish to stay. Check the security of your accommodation, aim to have a room that has key-card access only and ensure it has a deadbolt on the inside. Check the weather forecast for the time of year you wish to visit, there is nothing worse than being caught in the middle of a typhoon while on holiday!
Ultimately safe traveling comes down to a strong sense of situational awareness, do not let children, car accidents or others in distress distract you from your own safety. Just remember you can never be too prepared, using the above tips will ensure a safe and happy trip. Bon voyage!
Written by Jess, a travel blogger for TOP 10 Holiday Parks. They have many Picton accommodation options ranging from motels to camping, and a variety of wonderful Blenheim accommodation options to choose from. Image by Public Domain Photos