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7 Ways to Stay Safe on Vacation

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Jul 28, 2016

Traveling is an exciting and enriching experience that can give you all kinds of special memories. The far reaches of the world are becoming more accessible to travelers, and you can go virtually anywhere to have an unforgettable experience.

There’s a lot to account for when planning your vacation, but trip safety should always be your priority. Above all else, you want to be smart and prepared. Here are seven tips for the intrepid traveler intent on chasing their dreams.

1. Always create an itinerary

Some people like to be very scheduled, others prefer to fly by instinct. In either case, create some kind of document that has your travel times for arrival and departure each way, as well as a general overview of where you are going to be each day. Share this document with a person you trust. This way, if you go missing or require assistance, it will be much easier to locate you.

2. Use the buddy system

You don’t always have to travel in a group, but you should always use the buddy system. Try to find others in your hotel or travel group that you are friendly with and build a relationship of trust. In both domestic travels and travels abroad, you are much safer with a buddy than you are alone. This is especially true for vulnerable situations, such as at ATM usage, looking at maps, or asking for help. Take turns watching behind each other. It might seem like a silly precaution - but it’s effective at warding off would-be scammers, thieves, etc.

3. Make sure that you are always using legitimate cabs

Cab companies in the United States have strict policies for operation, but they are less regulated elsewhere. Talk with your concierge or host about what cabs are legitimate and stick with those. Illegitimate and false-flagged cabs are intended to scam you and you will be in danger.

Likewise, if you are using a service like Lyft or Uber, check to make sure that the car and driver match up with their profile. If they are legitimate drivers, your caution will not be an insult or an embarrassment.

4. Always grab a card from the hotel lobby

Whether you are at the Hilton, a Bed and Breakfast, or a motel; there will usually be cards on the front desk. You’re going to want to grab one and keep it with you for a couple of reasons. First, if for any reason your phone goes dead while you’re out, this is a fast and convenient way look up the location of your lodgings. Second, if you do not speak the native language, the card will allow you to wordlessly communicate where you need to go.

5. Beware of overly friendly locals

An enjoyable part of going on vacation is making memories and interacting with people you’d never have the chance to otherwise. The world is full of friendly people who love to share their culture and experiences with you. That being said, be aware that in most tourist focused areas around the world you are simultaneously a guest and a target.

You don’t have to be paranoid, but you need to exercise some caution. Stick to the buddy system. Don’t count your money in public places. In a lot of areas, it is a common scam for locals to approach tourists and try to convince them to come for a free meal, or to hold a baby, or to offer some kind of friendship trinket. Politely refuse these offers.

6. Have emergency meeting places

Even if you are traveling with a group or as a family, it’s not unusual to split up and enjoy separate activities. When you do break up in separate groups, always designate an agreed-upon emergency meeting place. If at all possible, travel in pairs or groups. Your concierge will be a valuable resource who can recommend safe areas to visit as well as an effective emergency meeting place.

7. Carry travel insurance

Especially when traveling abroad, travel insurance is a necessary asset. If you are carrying valuables with you, you can get them covered in case they are lost, stolen, or damaged. Also, even if you have great health insurance at home, it is not necessary applicable elsewhere. You can secure travel health insurance for the specific length of your trip, which not only will help cover any unforeseen costs but can also help get you booked into a hospital with the best available medical care.

Other options for travel insurance include trip cancellation coverage, loss of baggage coverage, dental coverage, and much more.

Being prepared and educated is the best way to have an amazing time on vacation. If you’re traveling and would like a little more peace of mind, contact Bradenton Insurance today - we’d love to help you out!



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