Travelling to another country can be extremely risky. You never know what is going to happen in a foreign country, and you are too far from home to take any chances. In order to remain safe, you need the right travel insurance and you also need to be prepared.
Learning how to handle emergency situations and protect yourself from potentially risky situations is a critical part of being prepared for travel.
Protecting Your Identity
Identity theft has skyrocketed in the last ten years and is easily accomplished by thieves who are watching to see when you are home and when you are on vacation. Here are the top five tips for protecting your identity while you travel.
- Don’t leave important documents, like your bank statements, credit card bills, and social security cards in your home while you are on vacation. If your home is broken into, they are easily found and used. Leave them instead with a family member or close friend.
- Stop the delivery of mail and newspapers to your home. A pile of these is like a beacon to thieves, telling them you aren’t home.
- Notify your credit card company and bank to let them know you will be out of the country. Many banks and credit card companies will put a hold on your account if they notice activity occurring outside of your country. Have them flag all of your transactions while you are gone, though, just in case you lose your card.
- Use the hotel’s safe if one is available for all of your personal documents, cash, and electronic devices. This will keep your items safe while you are staying in the hotel.
- Don’t use the internet at a local café or public location to do your online banking. You may not log out correctly, making it easy for anyone to access your account. These locations are also easy targets for hackers, putting your identity and money at risk for theft.
Other Safety Tips
Here are a five more safety tips you never thought you needed to know.
- Purchase travel insurance. Always. Travel insurance does more than just reimburse you for medical expenses and time lost waiting at the airport. It can also reimburse you for the loss of personal items, reimburse you for money spent on lawyers if you are wrongfully imprisoned, and assist you with the cost of locating a lost or kidnapped child.
- Always keep your passport in a safe place, hidden out of view. Only take it out when legal authorities ask you to.
- Don’t take out wads of cash to pay for items or wear expense jewellery. You are just setting yourself up as a prime target for pickpockets and thieves.
- Always make sure your prescriptions are in their correct bottles, with the doctor’s name and pharmacy name clearly visible. If you fail to do so, you may have to deal with some legal issues in your destination country.
- Stay in hotels that use key cards, not metal keys. Always make sure your doors and windows are locked in the room as well; don’t forget the deadbolt.
Stay safe while you are travelling by purchasing travel insurance and being informed on how to handle to reduce your risk of personal and identity theft during your trip. While you may not be able to plan for everything, these tips can help you be prepared to deal with any situation.