Traveling abroad can be very exciting indeed. Exotic destinations, different cultures, great food, you name it. You can’t rule out the possibility of “unplanned occurrences” – unexpected difficulties such as a lost passport or wallet. You just don’t know when trouble is going to come crashing in on your vacation so it’s good to be prepared on how to deal with serious difficulties. Observe these travel trips during your stay abroad:
To Take or Not to Take
• What you pack and leave behind plays in to your safety levels and here’s how: dressing in a way that paints you as an affluent tourist is a surefire way to become a target. Clothes that are too luxurious for their own good and expensive eye-catching jewelry may attract the wrong attention.
• It pays to travel light: you can move around quickly and more easily. You’re also less likely to set your luggage down, leaving it unattended. Having a free hand will certainly keep your energy levels higher and keep you more alert.
• There’s no need to carry a lot of valuables. Only the essentials and know where to conceal them. Your credit cards, cash and passport for example are well secured when locked away in a hotel safe. When you have them on you, it’s good practice to tuck them away in different places rather than a wallet or the same pocket.
• Fanny packs, handbags and outside pockets are easy targets for pick-pockets and thieves. A strapped shoulder bag worn across the chest is definitely safer. Also keep your valuables in inside pockets. Worried about carrying too many dollar bills? Store valuables in a pouch or money belt under your clothing.
• If you wear specs, packing an extra pair always helps. These along with any medicine bottles should be tucked away in your carry-on luggage
• A major credit card or two rather than cash should also give you the hook-up without posing major risks.
• You never know when you might end up in a situation where your passport is lost or stolen – pack extra passport photos plus a photocopy of the passport’s info page. Replacement of your passport page will be easier.
• Telephone numbers, your address and name should be on both the inside and outside of every piece of luggage. Lock your luggage whenever possible and you might want to use concealed luggage tags to keep the casual observer from “eyeballing” your nationality or identity.
Any valuables, expensive or not, that you would hate seeing ending up in the wrong hands, should be left at home. Items like:
• Unneeded Credit cards
• Family objects with irreplaceable worth or value
• Expensive-looking jewelry
• Your library card, Social Security Card and items that are routinely kept in your wallet for safekeeping.
It’s always a good idea to leave a copy of your itinerary with friends or family at home. They might need to contact you, should an emergency arise.
Take special care when you do this: two photocopies must be made of your passport identification page, driver’s license, credit cards and airline tickets. Leave one set with friends and family at home, store the second set in a place other than where the originals are.
Also ask a friend or relative to hold on to a copy of the serial numbers of your travelers’ checks. Just carry your copy in a different place and as you cash your checks, simply cross them off your list.
Learn a Little About the Place
Traveling to any country, you are subject to the laws of the place you are visiting. Before going, learn what you can about the local laws and customs of that place. The library is a great place to start. Your travel agent, tourist bureaus of the country you’re visiting and embassies are all great places to get this information.
Keep a check on what the media reports, regarding recent developments in the country you’re going to.