Have you just booked a major trip that was on your bucket list? Congratulations for taking the first step. No doubt you’ve researched places to stay and sites to see. In order to make your trip as pleasantly memorable as possible, follow these tips for staying safe while travelling abroad.
The first step is to secure all of your documents. Make copies of your passport and leave one with a trusted individual in the United States. These can be either electronic copies or hard copies. Make a copy of an additional US government issued photo identification. Most frequently this will be a driver’s licenses or state issued identification card. Share your travel itinerary and accommodations booking with a trusted individual. Again, this information can be either electronic or hard copy. Taking these precautions will be critical should your passport be stolen. The US Embassy in the country you’re visiting will be able to assist in securing a replacement passport using this documentation.
Label all of your luggage and carryon baggage. The labels should include US contact information as well as contact information for you while you’re abroad. If your luggage is lost or stolen, having identification cards on your luggage will be critical in assisting the return. If you’re visiting local restaurants, shops, salons or galleries, do not carry a shoulder bag or purse with a long strap. Invest in a money belt for your valuables and passport. Never open your wallet full of credit cards or cash in a busy retail area. You will become a target for thieves. If the hotel offers a safe, use this for your passport and other valuables.
Do not venture out at night alone. The same common sense personal safety advice applies at home as it does abroad. Be aware of your surroundings and let other know where you are. Enjoy a safe trip and congratulations for checking another destination off your bucket list!