There is little more exciting than jetting off on a foreign adventure, whether it’s a weekend break or a longer adventure. Travelling abroad gives you the opportunity to explore the world and experience other cultures and ways of life. Many people are wary of travelling abroad, with their safety being a main concern when it comes to booking a trip.
Visiting another country can be daunting, and they are not all as safe as we would like to think they are. While for the most part, heading off abroad is perfectly safe, there are a few things you should keep in mind. There are various safety precautions every traveller should take when setting off to a new place, to ensure the trip is enjoyable and trouble-free.
Here are our top tips on how to stay safe when travelling abroad:
Keep your documents safe and backed up
When you travel abroad, you will be packing various required documentation such as passports, insurance documents, accommodation details and visas. You should always have various back-ups available of these documents, just in case they are lost or stolen while you are away. Photocopy everything and keep another hard copy in a separate bag to the originals, that way if your bag goes missing, you have your back-ups elsewhere.
You should also send all these files to yourself on an email and keep it in your inbox so that you can access it from anywhere with an internet connection.
Keep the address of your hotel or accommodation on you at all times in both English and the local language. Keep this both on your phone and in a notepad and ensure everyone you are travelling with does the same just in case you get split up.
Be careful with your bags and belongings
Some countries are prone to thefts and have thieves that are highly experienced in stealing bags and other items from tourists without them even noticing. Don’t let yourself become a target by being extra careful with all your possessions. Get a bag that is sturdy and in your vision at all times.
Stay away from bags with thin straps as they can be easily cut, and while backpacks are great for easily carrying everything, they can be easy to steal from without you noticing. If you do have a backpack, wear it on the front, or invest in a sturdy bag lock and never use the front pockets.
It can be tempting to keep all of your important items together in one place, such as your credit cards, cash and passport. However, if you have everything with you in your bag and it gets stolen or lost, you will have lost all of your money and travel information. Keep money, identification and other items you don’t need on you locked in a safe in your accommodation.
If you do need to carry all your money, credit cards and ID with you, then keep them in different places on your person. Never keep anything in your back pocket while travelling as you will make yourself an easy target to thieves. Also read how to keep your money safe when travelling.
Invest in insurance
It can be tempting to think you don’t need travel insurance, especially if you are just jetting off for a short break. Travel insurance is essential for anyone travelling abroad, no matter how long for, as it will give you peace of mind and cover you should anything go wrong. Choose an insurance that will cover for all eventualities, such as lost items, stolen belongings, injuries and disruptions to your trip.
Sometimes you can get travel insurance through other channels that you already have. Some health insurance policies include travel insurance, as do some bank accounts or employers. If you think you are covered for travel already, double check the policy before you leave.
Don’t flaunt your bling
When you’re on a nice holiday, you might want to wear your fanciest jewellery and snap selfies with your brand new camera. Keeping these valuable items under wraps might not be as fun, but it will keep you safer. Flaunting expensive items while travelling abroad will make you a prime target for local thieves. Keep the jewellery to a minimum, avoid using fancy and expensive bags and accessories, and if you are using a nice camera or smartphone, make sure it is well hidden when not in use.
You might feel more comfortable keeping your camera or camcorder on your arm or across your neck at all times, but all that will do is mark you as a prime target for mugging by thieves. Although it might be more hassle to keep getting it out your bag, it will keep you and your belongings safer.