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Basic Tips for Staying Safe on Vacation

How to get there and back in one piece.

Travelers dancing

Traveling is a great way to escape the stress of day-to-day life. If you’re planning a getaway that’s near or far, whether it’s a Melbourne, Florida vacation or a trip overseas, it can even improve your physical and mental health, while being a fun, carefree time, but it’s important to prepare carefully in order to ensure you return safely.

Give a Family Member or Friend a Copy of Your Itinerary

Anytime you go on vacation, there should be at least one person who knows where you’ll be throughout the trip. Not only will someone be able to reach you if there’s a problem at home, but if an unfortunate event happens to you, such as getting lost while you’re hiking in the Swiss Alps or having a rental car breakdown in an area where there is no cell service, they’ll be able to give emergency crews a better idea of where you might be.

At the Airport

While your first thought is probably how you’ll stay safe once you arrive at your destination, your greatest risk of becoming a crime victim may be in that first 24 hours at the airport. When you’re there, be sure to keep address tags on your luggage covered as would-be burglars have been known to hang around looking for addresses to determine where empty homes are. Airports also provide an inviting atmosphere for thieves simply because of the chaotic atmosphere with crowds, long lines and delays at security checkpoints. In fact, even TSA agents can be a problem as one convicted of stealing over $800,000 worth of goods from travelers noted that it was “commonplace” among airport security.

To decrease the odds of having your laptop stolen, place it on the conveyor belt last, after all your other items, and only after ensuring there aren’t any delays so that it will arrive on the other side about the same time you do rather than sitting out in the open. Keep an eye on all your valuables as closely as possible.

Bring Several Different Forms of Money, Keeping Them in Various Places

Whenever you travel, don’t bring just one form of money. If there’s a problem, such as a credit or debit card not working, or you end up losing your cash, you could end up stuck. Carry one or two cards in your wallet with some cash, and keep an emergency card in a separate place, perhaps a mini-clip stash wallet. Be sure to use an RFID Credit Card shield holder that will block access to all your personal data stored on credit card microchips. Stash some extra cash in a hotel safe after you arrive and/or safely zipped up in your luggage.

Make Copies of Your Passport Before Traveling Internationally

If you’ll be traveling outside of the country, make two copies of your passport before you go, leaving one with a trusted family member or friend, taking the other with you. Once you’re there, whenever you’re out exploring, bring the copy with you and keep the original in a hotel safe.

Be Alert and Cautious When Heading Out

When you’re exploring a new city, it can be easy to get distracted by all the sights. Be extra cautious by staying alert at all times and being aware of your surroundings, not getting so caught up in capturing that perfect picture that you become vulnerable to pickpockets. Don’t wear any expensive jewelry, as that bling can also make you a more likely target.

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