Traveling can be quite an adventure and fun for the whole family, but it can also present challenges. Being prepared is a good way to ensure a safe trip.
Before you set off on your next weekend trip to the country or excursion around the world, here are a few tips to help keep you out of harm's way.
Prepare Before You Leave
- Protect your home. Take steps to make your home safe while you're away.
- Carry the minimum number of valuables. Expensive-looking jewelry and accessories can bring the wrong kind of attention. If possible, travel with only one or two credit cards.
- Talk to your doctor or health provider. If traveling abroad, vaccinations may be recommended. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has extensive information on its website.
- Copy important documents. Make and keep copies of your passport, driver's license, and credit cards.
- Travel light. You will be able to move quicker and less likely to set your luggage down and leave it unattended.
- Consider travel insurance. If planning a trip far in advance or one that is expensive, you may want to be covered in case of an emergency cancelation.
- Bring a basic first aid kit. Include bandages, iodine, mosquito repellent, sunscreen, alcohol packets, and motion sickness and diarrhea medicines. Make sure that your prescription medicines are filled properly and labeled accurately.
- Pack a small flashlight. You may suddenly end up in the dark and find yourself in unfamiliar surroundings.
- Check with your cellular carrier. Cellular providers offer supplemental services and plans so customers can use their cell phones outside the United States.
Stay Out of Harm's Way
- Avoid being pickpocketed. Keep your wallet in your front pocket. If carrying a purse or bag, wear the shoulder strap across your chest and walk with the bag away from the curb to avoid drive-by purse snatchers.
- Remain calm if mugged. It is best to and give up your valuables.
- Bring along updated photos of your children. You made need them in case you become separated.
- Be discreet about personal information. Do not discuss travel plans, your room number, or any other personal information in public within earshot of strangers.
- Do not flash your money or passport in public. You don't want to make yourself a target.
- Stay away from stray cats and dogs. While they may seem friendly, they can carry diseases.
- Steer clear of unmarked taxicabs. They are not licensed and can be dangerous.
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