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What are some of your tips for staying safe while traveling? 

 

 

Answers

See three of AARP's travel safety tips here.

 

Driving Safety

Defensive driving, going the speed limit, seat belt (duh), doors locked, sunglasses, usually no radio — I enjoy the silence, Uber to an evening benefit that will include cocktails, leave on time so there’s no rushing, a little talking thru bluetooth is ok  but make it quick, don’t look at the phone — it can wait until I get to my destination. If someone displays road rage, I try to not reciprocate. These are my primary rules.

 

 

I drive an RV so my travel tips maybe a little different: Check your vehicle daily for any mechanical issues (ie: lights, turn signals, tires,everything in place, etc.) Give yourself plenty of space all around you and for braking. Drive rested never tired!!  Always drive ahead and antiscipate leaving yourself an out if need be. Breakup the trip with a rest stop every two hours if you can and if you have a dog, give him a potty break too. Plan your route the night before and use your phone apps to see if the weather, road conditions, construction or detours do not suprise you. Limit your driving to maybe 300 miles a day, so you don't wear yourself out trying to get where ever. I also use RV Park Review both on my phone and computer, so that you get an opinion on your next campground. It can save you alot of grief. Driving an RV is a full time job and should be treated in that manner because that is alot of money in your hands. Happy trails!!

 

International Travel

  • Notify your credit card company where you are going. This will avoid having your card declined.
  • Keep a photocopy of your passport, license, medication perscriptions separate from your other documents. If possible, email a copy of each to yourself.
  • Place items like a wallet in your front pocket instead of the rear to make it harder for pickpockets.
  • Keep some small bills in a pocket separate from your wallet so you don't have to open your wallet or purse for small purchases.
  • Use pants or purses which have both zippers or snaps plus flaps covering the pocket, again making it harder for pick-pockets
  • When possible, wear purses in the front, not the side.
  • Sign up for The Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to enroll your trip with the nearest consulate or embassy. (They will contact you if there is a travel warning in the country you are traveling in.)
  • Find out the emergency number in the country you are going to. (Not everyone uses 911)
  • Don't write about your trip ahead of time on Facebook or Twitter.
  • Keep money in a few different places, and remember where they are.
  • If there is a room safe, use it. Take what you need when you go out.
  • Ask the hotel clerk, AIrbnb host, etc., for tips about keeping safe. They have to deal with their local communities and probably can share some good tips. Ask about taxis, ride-sharing services, walking, transportation, local food kiosks, and places to visit and to avoid. 

 

On my recent trip, I used a very thin money clip type RFID protected wallet in my front pocket and a "decoy" old wallet in my back pocket. The money clip wallet held ID, some money, and two credit cards. The decoy only had garbage papers in it to pad it.

 

I would only email the documents if you have zipped and password protected or encrypted them. A Google documents account would let you store them encrypted online but be accessible from any computer or phone.

 

I would add a wallet cleaning before the trip to the list and leave at least one credit card in the room safe in case your wallet gets lost or stolen. There are lots of things you may not need in your wallet during the trip, especially on an overseas trip. Like a Sam's Club card, Costco card, casino cards, etc.

 

I recently found several brands of pickpocket-proof clothing. They aren't cheap, but not outrageous for quality clothing. There are shirts, pants, and jackets for men and women in casual and dress levels. Clothing Art has a video on their website on how their line works to prevent pickpocketing.

 

 

More Tips for a Safe Vacation

Alert your bank and credit card company to your travel plans. If you don’t, charges you make might be declined if you’re in a location where you don’t usually travel.

 

Also, depending on where you’ll be visiting, you may need to arrange for special health insurance coverage prior to departing.

 

Surf the internet wisely. Hotel room, coffee shop and airport Wi-fi networks may be unsafe. Learn how to use a VPN, purchase your own mobile wireless hotspot, investigate purchasing a SIM card for use in a country you’re visiting, or set up your smartphone to serve as your computer’s Wi-fi connection. In your hotel room, use an Ethernet cable instead of in-room Wi-fi to connect to the internet.

 

Bank wisely. And avoid conducting financial transactions using your smartphone or computer on the road. Visit a financial institution in person.

 

Protect your airline frequent flier miles. Your airline miles represent valuable currency to fraudsters. Protect your miles by making the password on your airline account at least eight characters and hard to guess and check your mileage balance regularly.

 

Make and store copies of important documents. Make color copies of your passport, driver’s license and insurance cards, and emergency contact information. Give one copy to a trusted contact back home, put one copy in your travel bag separate from where you keep the originals. Scan a third and upload the files to a password-protected location in the cloud such as Google docs or OneDrive.

 

Protect your privacy on social media. Share your photos on social media, but wait until after you return home. Even if your privacy settings limit who can see what you post, it’s risky to let on that you’ll be away from home.

 

Only take the essentials to protect against theft. Do you really need to bring along expensive jewelry? Can your smartphone replace a high-end camera? Apart from the risk of carrying and showing off expensive items in public, your hotel room isn’t as secure as it might seem. Hotel key cards can be hacked — it doesn’t even have to be a valid card, and some members of the hotel staff can open in-room safe deposit boxes. 

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