Travelling is supposed to be fun, exciting, and memorable. But sometimes, this is not always the case. It is not uncommon to hear in the news that a tourist was robbed or scammed. Other threats travellers have had to grapple with include pickpocketing, sex trafficking, kidnapping, food poisoning, violence, and transportation issues. Bad people are anywhere, even in your native country, so it is always important to be prepared and anticipate bad things to happen. Our funeral director www.gosimplyfunerals.co.uk is always impressing on us about the importance of safe travel.
Such incidents can ruin your mood and journey, making you wish you could go back to the safety of your home instantly. The good news is that there are specific safety tips you can apply to avoid falling prey to evil people and their schemes. These are:
1. Research to know the popular scams at your destination
Before embarking on the journey of a lifetime, do a quick research about what kind of scams you can expect to find in the country you are traveling to. Various countries have unique scams, so it is wise to know them before setting foot there. For instance, in Paris there is the popular ring scam and in Cuba there is a milk scam. When you do your homework, it will be easy to avoid becoming a scamming victim.
2. Avoid wearing flashy jewelry
Wearing flashy and luxurious jewelry is a no-no when you are a traveller, particularly if you plan to visit a crowded place or event such as a market or parade. Wearing it will attract robbers to you. It will be prudent to leave the jewelry at home.
3. Have digital copies of crucial documents
As a traveller, a passport is your most significant document. If you lose it or thieves snatch your bag or purse, you will not worry because the replacement process will be easier when you have a digital copy.
4. Acquire travel insurance
Insurance can give you peace of mind and make your journey much more enjoyable. It will cover all injuries and hospital visits. The policy can also protect you from loss or theft of personal items.
5. Be mindful of your health
Ensure you buy vital over-the-counter supplies such as bug repellant, probiotics, sickness pills, and painkillers. Talk to your doctor and ensure you get the necessary vaccines before travelling. Get enough prescription pills to last you for the duration you expect to be on the journey and a few extra pills in case your journey takes more days than you planned. This can happen due to unavoidable situations such as natural disasters, weather, or political unrest. When buying food in a foreign country, choose the hotels with long queues and eat fruits you can peel.
6. Keep the emergency contact numbers safe
When a tragedy happens, it might be too hard for you to look for the ambulance services, local police or your country’s embassy numbers. You could also be too traumatized and can’t make a wise decision. Don’t allow yourself to face this challenge. You can also take advantage of today’s existing technology to help you store such crucial information safe as you travel. You can save it on phones using an app like Evernote App. You can also save emergency information and copies of your crucial documents and passport on a tiny USB thumb drive. Another effective trick is to write down the information on a card or piece of paper and laminate it.
7. Avoiding telling strangers excess information about yourself
It is common for travellers to post their journey itinerary on social media. This is usually a dangerous thing to do because you don’t know who will read it. If a person asks you details about your travels, don’t be impolite, just be indirect about it and tell a few lies to protect yourself. Some evil person could have bad motives and would use this information negatively.
8. Try to blend in
If people notice you are a tourist, thieves and scammers will target you and ruin your day. Sometimes, the clothes you wear can make you stand out, especially if you are in a country with a totally different culture like Iran and India. It is also essential for you to learn the local customs and follow them to avoid appearing uninformed and egotistical. Luckily, you can find this information online on sites like Wikipedia.
9. Always be alert and aware of your surrounding
Thieves and pickpockets usually target people who appear to be distracted or disconnected from their surroundings. Be alert whether you are walking in an empty street or a crowded area. This is usually possible for solo travellers and, more so, lone female travellers. Ensure that your eye contact and body language communicate confidence to your potential assailants. Overall, be observant of who is near you, and don’t appear to be scared, afraid, or lost. If you are lost, go into a shop or hotel and ask for directions. Don’t just ask anyone on the streets for directions.
10. Give your loved ones your itinerary
If you are travelling, tell your loved ones about your plans. Confirm that they have received the itinerary you emailed them. Tell your closest family members exactly where you are going, what you will be doing there, and your estimated return time. If you delay returning for a long duration, they will contact the embassy and local authorities to search for you.
It is essential to stay safe when traveling and be aware that there will be people out there ready to fleece money out of you. If possible, travel with friends, stay sober, and seek out travel advisories and emergency alerts. You can get advisories and emergency alerts from the embassy, and apps like Smart traveler and Sitata. With these tips, you can be a step ahead of the thieves and scammers who will cross your path during your journeys.