Safety tips for the smart traveller

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Nothing smells more like fresh bait than an unaware tourist. With swindlers, dupers and predators at every nook and corner of your dream destination, you need to be extra cautious lest your travel turn into a nightmare. Here are a few tips to keep you safe this holiday season and return revived rather than robbed from your trip.

How to carry money

Aside from the general safety rules like don’t trust strangers and avoid safekeeping packages from unfamiliar people, you need to be extra careful while handling cash. A safety pouch that can be fastened to your belt or around your neck is a must. Pickpockets will do a pretty neat job picking up from your front pocket let alone the easy breezy pant pockets. Be super alert when going in crowded places as the pushing and shoving from the crowd will be hard to differentiate from someone wiping you clean. Browse online for pouches that can be fastened to your body inside your clothes. Water sports and swimming need not be missed out upon in the name of safety of your belongings. Invest in a water proof pouch specifically designed to be used under water. You can find these online too.

ATM withdrawals

Withdrawing money from an ATM is another murky swamp you need to tread carefully in. Using an ATM on a deserted street is like walking into a hungry lion’s den. It is not only a danger to property but also to life so be extra cautious. The general instructions displayed on the wall of every ATM must be heeded. Do not operate an ATM with someone else inside. Also make sure to always take your receipt. Do not count your cash while exiting the ATM lest you entice a mugger. In many places you will come across a drive through ATM. Never leave your car running or open while operating the ATM. I’m fairly certain that you would rather have your cash stolen rather than your rental car!

Contingency Planning

Another trick many travellers opt for is to carry a dummy wallet as bait for muggers and petty thieves. The dummy wallet can be filled with fake notes and cards. In a sticky situation you can always give away the fake wallet while your belongings are safely tucked close to your body.

Money is not the only thing you stand to lose in case of a mishap. Passports, ID cards need to be carried at all times and their safety also taken into account. Before you head off to your destination make two copies of your passport, ID cards, travel cards and traveller’s cheques. Keep a batch of the copies with your in-case-of-emergency contact back at home and carry the other batch in your luggage separate from the originals.

Personal Safety

When travelling in groups do not stock all passports and original documents with one person. Also let children have emergency contact numbers memorized or written on their arms and carry a small notebook of all important details in case they get lost. Never leave your originals lying around in your drawers or wardrobe of your hotel room. Either carry them on your person or keep them in the safe if provided by the hotel.

Be safe this travel season as a safe traveller is a smart traveller.

With all said and done, Bon Voyage!

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