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Nowhere in the World is Safe Travel Tip

In the registry of “safe places” in the world, Bangor, Maine ranks high on the list. A kid was shot in front of the house I am staying in a few nights ago. He, apparently, was fighting some other kids. One of them shot him. This happens everywhere. Designating places as being safe or unsafe [...]

In the registry of “safe places” in the world, Bangor, Maine ranks high on the list.

A kid was shot in front of the house I am staying in a few nights ago. He, apparently, was fighting some other kids. One of them shot him.

This happens everywhere.

Designating places as being safe or unsafe is often irrelevant, as, most often, it is a person’s actions which determine their safety far more than external factors. Bangor is safe, but, as has been proven, you can be shot in the street here.

Outside of extreme circumstances, the world is a safe place to travel. Don’t fear countries, fear your own actions in those countries, fear situations, fear circumstances.

Even these people could be dangerous too

You can be shot down, robbed, buggered anywhere in the world at any time. Don’t allow the fear instilled by newspaper headlines thwart your travels. Keep your head up, sleep at night, wake up early, look people in the eye, and walk where your legs lead you, and you will find that you can nearly be as safe in a “dangerous country” as in Bangor, Maine.

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Filed under: Travel Safe, Travel Tips

About the Author:

Wade Shepard is the founder and editor of Vagabond Journey. He has been traveling the world since 1999, through 88 countries. He is the author of the book, Ghost Cities of China, and contributes to Forbes, The Diplomat, the South China Morning Post, and other publications. has written 3396 posts on Vagabond Journey. Contact the author.

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Wade Shepard is currently in: Rochester, New York

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  • Michael Crosby January 30, 2010, 1:18 am

    I was thinking last night about times I put myself in peril. I feel very lucky things didn’t go wrong. I would guess Wade, its happened to you many times.

    Stay safe, I enjoy reading your thoughts and experiences.

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  • Simon January 30, 2010, 9:29 am

    Some great advice in the last paragraph. If you stay out of trouble, trouble won’t find you. Travellers can’t be scared, even if something does happen, like I was mugged once on holiday, you need to carry on to enjoy the world.

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  • Dan Engstrom January 30, 2010, 7:59 pm

    I was born and raised in Fryeburg, Maine. I can honestly say that I have had more guns pointed in my direction for doing something stupid when I was a punk teenager in my local area (For those who don’t know, Fryeburg is a rural town with a small resort community next door in New Hampshire) than I ever did in any of the major american cities that I have been through. People in this area look at me cross-eyed when I tell them that I have hoofed it through East Boston at 10:00 at night, or ridden through the slums of Dallas in a taxi, but as long as you know who, what, and why to stay away from certain people then 99 percent of the time you can keep yourself out of harms way. The one rule that I can give anybody traveling anywhere is; DO NOT LOOK EXPENSIVE.

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    • Wade | Vagabond Journey.com February 5, 2010, 4:34 pm

      Good tip, Dan,

      People take what they think they can get. A person in a slick suit is more likely to get mugged than some miser in rags.

      There is also a heightened degree of awareness that people have when traveling through potentially dangerous places, which is why I feel as if the balance of risks is often leveled out in the end. It is my impression that people often put themselves in compromising situations far more in places they feel safe — like in their home town or a bar with a lot of foreigners abroad — than places they don’t, so the risks they seem willing to take evens out a little. I know for sure that I have also done far stupider things where I grew up than I ever would when traveling.

      The more dangerous a place is perceived to be, the more awareness you should have when going there; the more awareness you have, the safer you should be.

      Thanks,

      Wade

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