Traveling is an exciting and thrilling adventure, but the biggest concern is how to stay safe while traveling. The reason is the greatest mood changers while traveling are falling sick, getting robbed, or scammed. According to average global stats, almost 33% of fraud occurs when people travel, so you had better watch out.
Various frauds happen worldwide, like; fake taxi drivers, false police officers, fake travel agencies, and many more. To find out more, check on the 15 common travel frauds and how to avoid them. Therefore, to travel safely, make sure you do not publicize your journey and use trustworthy travel agencies. We have compiled 14 tips, which you may consider when you want to travel.
Best Tips to Stay Safe While Traveling
Research Your Destination Beforehand
The most important thing when it comes to knowing how to stay safe while traveling is the location. Before even deciding which transport to use, you have a little knowledge of the area you want to travel to. This is because when you do not have any idea of how the place is, you can be a victim of scams and probably not going to be able to return safely.
This means that you have to understand the culture, rules, laws, crime rates, and weather conditions, to mention but a few. Find out which cities or towns are safe or have better weather. Also, find out the crime and scams in the area to avoid falling prey to them since you are in a foreign land.
Lastly, know the language because not every country uses English as their primary language. There some online courses that you can take, and in less than three months, you will be speaking like a local, for instance, Spanish online courses.
Track on Emergency Information
It is essential to always have emergency information if you get lost or your things are stolen. Make sure to keep the contact details of the police or any emergency office in that area before you leave.
You must have many copies of the emergency contacts; one has to stay in your wallet or purse, and the other one to stay in every bag you carry.
Have your documents printed or laminated to avoid damage or create an emergency plan that you can always refer to in emergency situations. You can also use applications like Evernote to keep a list of all the emergency contact information for convenience.
Keep a Record of Important Documents
Travelers are not the only victims of crimes; even the citizens can become victims. Therefore, stay alert because you will always be the first suspect in any type of crime. Make sure you make copies of your important documents such as your passport, ID, birth certificate, and other professional certificates.
Scan these documents in case your hard copies are stolen. You have them saved online. Do this, or else you will not be able to go back home, and you will not be able to identify when needed.
Keep Your Friends and Family Updated
Additionally, when it comes to staying safe while traveling before you leave, make sure that at least a few trusted friends and family members are aware of your journey and leave them with your itinerary.
Inform your family at every stop or whenever you find a place where there is a safe internet connection. This is so that they remain updated on your every move and do this daily until you return.
Be Secure On Public Wi-Fi When Traveling
Also, on how to stay safe while traveling, avoid using open Wi-Fi connections. The reason being that open Wi-Fi hotspots are challenging to secure because anyone can connect to them without any sort of authentication.
Therefore, using public Wi-Fi gives cybercriminals avenues to attack, including hacking an existing Wi-Fi network and creating a fake Wi-Fi network. Here are some of the attacks cybercriminal use on open Wi-Fi (public Wi-Fi):
- Man In The Middle (MITM)
- Domain Name System (DNS) Spoofing
You can always check for HTTPS and use a Virtual Private Network (VPN) to protect yourself.
Safeguard Your Hotel Room
Crime does not stop in the streets; things can also be stolen in Hostels and Hotels. Therefore, use the locker or the safe to keep your valuables.
One of the simplest and recommended ways to add security to your hotel room is using a rubber door wedge. They are efficient because they are cheap, do not take up much space when traveling, and set up in just a few seconds.
Simply place the thin end of the rubber wedge under the door jam and gently kick it into place to secure it. Try to give off the impression that you are in your room even when you are not. You can do this by putting the Do Not Disturb sign on your door. You can also safeguard your hotel room by:
- Inspecting the room
- Keeping the door locked
- Not opening the door for strangers
Checking the locks on all windows and doors every time you enter the room and before you leave.
Keep an Eye on Your Surroundings
Be constantly aware of your surroundings, be alert and vigilant, always look behind you, and note the places you drive into and the people you are meeting. When you are observant potential thieves will not target you, as they would be aware that you are watching them.
It is also wise to drive yourself when you meet up with people so that when you feel uncomfortable or see someone acting suspiciously, you can leave. When you do leave, if possible, use a different route. That way, you can avoid anyone following you back to your hotel room.
Do Not Share Your Location in Social Media
If you want to know how to stay safe while traveling, avoid posting too much on social media. Try to not post on social media while you are on vacation because you do not want to tip off criminals by sharing too much information on your social networks.
Therefore, refrain from posting photos, status updates, or “checking in” while on vacation. Even if you have the highest security settings on your social media accounts, your personal information can still be seen by the wrong people. These people can then use that information to keep track of you and later on rob you.
Keep With You Necessary Things Only
You must know not to carry everything with you when you leave your hotel/ hostel room for a day or night tour. Hence, use the safe/locker in your Hotel/Hostel to store your credit cards, passports, and expensive jewelry.
As for during the day, you will only need a little cash and a copy of your passport just so you remain on the safe side. If you carry too much luggage with you, you will attract thieves and robbers. Therefore, carry only what is necessary.
Make Sure Your Home Is In Protection While You Are Away
Lock all windows and doors to keep the burglars and animals away. The best thing is to install an alarm system and security cameras in your home to watch over it while you are away. Have your valuables locked up in a safe or a secret room.
Set up your outdoor lights to switch on automatically at night to the impression that someone is home. That way, no thief would want to break in. Ask a trusted neighbor or friend to clear mail from the mailbox while you are away.
Check Out & Monitor Your Credit Card & Reports
Monitor the use of your credit cards through notifications from your credit card company. In addition, if you notice something strange, ask the company to block the card. To avoid any credit card hackers, use cash for all transactions. If you cannot keep track of your credit card, download a credit monitor and help you track all the activities, transactions, and withdrawals.
When planning for your trip outside your home, be sure to enable your phone and laptop tracking. This way, you can track any lost or stolen valuable items. Lock your devices using a strong password with letters, numbers, symbols, or better off, use biometric protection.
Remember to always have the location on for accessible location and tracking. When connected to public Wi-Fi, use a VPN to ensure a safe connection, and no one will access your phone through the internet.
Avoid Drinking Alcohol
Also, on how to stay safe while traveling, avoid too much alcohol. When you are drunk, you are most likely to make poor decisions, take risks, and affect your judgment. The worst scenario is being a target for criminals. You could also be arrested for breaking your host country’s rules, sexually assaulted, or injured. Pay attention to what is being mixed into your drink and select a drink with familiar ingredients. Watch the number of glasses you have. If you have had more than your limit, stop and take lots of water.
Every person traveling to another country should consider buying travel insurance either for a short or long trip. You may be injured in a foreign land and not have any funds to cover your medical bills and ensure you are safe during your stay. Travel insurance is a prerequisite for traveling safely and making sure you are covered during your stay in a foreign land. In addition, you can always buy your insurance in another country after you have left for your vacation destination.
Protect Yourself from Covid-19 While Traveling
Protecting yourself from covid-19 is a necessary measure if you want to know to stay safe from covid-19 while traveling. The reason being that safety means your physical health as well.
Make sure that at all times, when you travel that you pay attention to all of the covid-19 regulations that are put in place. Do not fool yourself and think that the coronavirus is a myth to stop you from having fun. It is accurate and kills. Even the best places to travel in the world have been and can still be affected by the deadly virus.
Therefore, make sure that you are extra careful to follow all of the regulations put in place to protect yourself from covid-19. You can also take some additional precautions for your own safety like:
- Buying hand sanitizer
- Keeping your facemask on at all times in public
- Maintaining social distance
- Avoid areas with crowds
- Avoid touching any rails on steps or escalators
The Bottom Line
Use this How to Stay Safe While Traveling guide to plan all your trips and vacations. This is because there is no more incredible feeling than knowing your trip will be safe and memorable. Use travel insurance if something happens to you and protect your phone and other devices at all times. Learn about your travel destination to know what to expect, and always have emergency contact numbers close by if you get lost.
Carry copies of your documents whenever you move around. Constantly update the family of your location to allow them to track you should something happen. Plan for your home and anything that you did leave behind. Make sure you leave your house in order and lock all the doors and windows. Also, keep all the valuables in the house safely; lastly, do not forget to set on the alarms before you leave.
Auto set your house to switch on the lights to scare the burglars away. If possible, have a neighbor or a trusted relative check out your home from time to time as well. Above all, remember to enjoy yourself to the fullest – savor every moment and take loads of pictures and videos for memories’ sake!