Travel Safety TipsThe key to enjoying your holiday is to stay in safe and avoid danger. Following some general safety guidlines will minimise the possibility of getting into a dangerouse scenario.
Armed with the knowledge of the regions you are travelling to it is time to get acquainted with the region. The first resource I recommend is visiting www.fco.gov.uk. This site has a wealth of information (intended for British travellers – but some of the advise is general enough for travellers of all nationalities). The FCO website has ‘advise by country’ where you can get familiar with ‘bread and butter’ info you need about a particular country. The ‘advice by country’ has advice on Health, Safety and Security (Terrorism, Crime, Political Situation, Local Travel), Local Laws and Customs you should be aware of, Entry Requirement (visa, passport requirements), Natural Disasters and some general advice.
One extremely useful link from these pages is the Locate Service (which wasn’t around when I travelled) https://www.locate.fco.gov.uk/locateportal. LOCATE is a free service provided by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office for British nationals travelling to or living outside of the United Kingdom. The details you provide when you register will help our embassy and crisis staff to contact you and give you better assistance in an emergency such as a natural or manmade disaster or civil disturbance.
General Safety Advice
- Make sure the country you are visiting is deemed safe to travel by the FCO, otherwise if anything happens, you will not be covered by your insurance.
- At airports only use official licensed taxis
- Book taxi’s though your hotel - they are likely to call reliable safe taxi ranks
- Place valuables in the hotel safe / room safe, if none exists, place the valuables in your rucksack and attach the rucksack to a fixture using a device like the Pacsafe wire mesh.
- In transit place valuable items in a money belt
- Only carry with you the monies you need for the day and the hotel card you are staying at
- Email yourself and trusted people the photos of your passport, insurance policy (details of insurance company and policy number), itinerary and emergency contact telephone numbers (for Emergency card replacement, lost or stolen cards, travellor cheque company, insurance, hotel, Embassy etc), you may want to encrypt this stuff – see staying safe online section.
- Keep in regular contact with family and friends, this has been made easier with social networking sites
- Don’t display any valuables in public, such as cameras, expensive watches (buy yourself a cheap digital watch out there) jewellery , it’s better to leave this stuff at home
- Be aware of some of the mugging scams (they are conducted in a group). One such scam is someone sprays liquid detergent on your back / spits on your face (and other variations to distract you) whilst another from their group will attempt to mug you, all done while you are distracted!
- Book your first nights accommodation
- Try not to veer off the tourist track as most tourist areas are safe, be alert at all times, use your instincts, if a situation doesn’t feel right, get out of there immediately
- Keep off the Alcohol, accidents are likely to happen when you’re drunk, also you wont be covered by insurance!