July 21, 2020

Although some of these tips may seem like common sense, when we’re out enjoying ourselves on vacation, these safety rules can be easily forgotten.

  1. Make 2 copies of all of your important documents (passport, credit cards, driver’s license). Put one copy in your hotel room vault, leave one copy at home with someone you can contact from afar, take a photo of each document and keep it on your phone.
  2. Don’t carry all of your money with you; keep some in the hotel room vault. When traveling, keep your valuables in more than one location, e.g. in your pocket and in your bag, or in a money belt and in a wallet. Don’t keep it all in one spot.  Also, leave the passport in the hotel room safe.
  3. Know where you’re going. Review maps and directions before heading out for the day. Write down the name and address of your hotel or destination to show to drivers or those you might ask for directions.
  4. If you don’t know the language, learn a few key phrases, and consider putting a translator app on your phone.
  5. Always travel with your medication (and contact lenses) in your carry-on bag.
  6. Keep a list of emergency numbers in your wallet or bag, i.e. a list of who should be contacted if something happens to you.
  7. When you check into your hotel, know where the fire exits and stairs are located. Keep your shoes and bag handy to grab if you have to leave quickly.
  8. Be aware of your belongings. When you sit in a restaurant, café or on public transportation, keep your bag on your lap or between your feet. At the very least attach the straps to the leg of your chair. When you get up to leave, take a look back at where you were to make sure you haven’t left a bag, sweater or any other item.
  9. Make friends with the locals but don’t follow them into unsafe areas or eat or drink anything that they are not eating or drinking too. Check the Lonely Planet’s “Thorn Tree” forum for common scams – they are boundless!
  10. Have fun, be open to new adventures and experiences (that’s the point of travel after all) but keep your wits about you and pay attention.

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