It’s no secret I love traveling, and if you’re here reading this, I bet you do too. And while travel has given me some of the best memories and experiences of my life, that doesn’t mean it’s all sunshine and roses. In the world we live in, there’s always a small risk of danger, and that doesn’t go away when you’re traveling. That’s why I’m sharing Travel Safety Tips to help you stay safe while traveling and have the best time!
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Travel Safety Tips: Before You Go
Do Your Research
The best travel safety tips for your trip will vary depending on where you’re going. Here’s how to do your research and ensure you’re staying safe:
- Get to know the scams that happen where you’re going. Headed to Paris? Make sure you know about the infamous ring scam. Booking a trip to New Orleans? You’ll want to research the sneaker scam.
- Read reviews for the accommodations you’re booking, especially if you’re using a platform like AirBnB. In particular, look for what reviewers say about the neighborhood’s safety and the listing’s accuracy.
Prepare Your Documents
Before you leave for your trip, make sure you’ve got digital copies of all your important documents. Think credit cards, passports, ID cards, etc. That way, in the unfortunate case that you’re robbed or you lose your things, you’ve got access to all your most vital documents!
On top of that, make sure to have emergency info on hand in case of a dire situation. Having the local police number stored in your phone is a great idea if you’re going to another country. You also want to keep the name and address of where you’re staying somewhere you can easily access it.
Bonus Travel Safety Tips: Insure Your Travel
You can save yourself from the financial misery of a missed flight, a lost suitcase, or even an emergency medical situation abroad when you have the right travel insurance. There are offerings out there for all levels of protection. You could just insure your flights, or you could purchase travel medical insurance as well.
Travel Safety Tips: How to Stay Safe While Traveling
Protect Your Belongings
One of the biggest safety threats when traveling is theft and robbery. Of course this threat exists both at home and abroad, but when you’re traveling it’s especially inconvenient when you lose your things. To save yourself from the headache theft and robbery causes, try out these tips:
- Use anti-theft bags (I love PacSafe and Travelon) to deter anyone from cutting into your bag to steal your things.
- Keep valuables locked up at your accommodation when you’re not using them.
- Only carry the valuables you need that day, and limit the amount of cash you’re carrying to what you think you’ll need plus a little extra just in case. And don’t carry all your cards at once!
- Don’t show off expensive belongings. Not using your DSLR camera? Put it away instead of letting it swing from your neck.
- Stash some cash in various places. In case you get robbed, you’ll have a backup cache of money to tide you over. I spread a little cash between my purse, suitcase, and toiletry case.
- Before withdrawing cash from an ATM, check to make sure it hasn’t been tampered with.
Connect with the Locals
Connecting with locals is one of the best travel safety tips because it’s also really fun. You’re traveling to get to know a new place, and part of that is getting to know the people who live there. So don’t be shy! Pick the brains of some locals, especially hotel staff and/or AirBnB hosts. Ask them which parts of the city to avoid, how much taxi fares should cost, and of course: their favorite place to eat.
At the same time, be mindful and alert of who you connect with. Don’t share too much with strangers right off the bat—for example, there’s no need to tell someone you don’t know what hotel you’re staying in.
Ultimately, staying safe is about staying alert. If you remain aware of your surroundings, you can usually avoid most threats to your safety. If you need to check your map or your phone, be discreet. Don’t stand on a street corner scratching your head while looking at a map. Project confidence when you walk around, even if you feel a little lost.
Staying alert also means being careful about what (and how much) you drink. It’s vacation, so of course you want to have fun. But don’t drink yourself to oblivion, especially at bars or restaurants far from your accommodation. And on top of that, make sure to keep an eye on your drink the whole time, so no one can tamper with it.
And at the end of the day? Staying alert is about trusting your gut. It’s always better to be safe rather than sorry. If you get a bad feeling about any person, place, or thing, listen to your instincts.
I hope these travel safety tips help! Have a question? Feel free to send me a DM on Instagram!
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