Whether for business, pleasure or whatever, we naturally do want things to go about smoothly in our travels. Yet what could assure our safety?
Here are the basics that you need to know.
- Do advance research of your destination from attractions and its peak seasons, hostels, climate, culture, practices, exchange rates, local cost of living and political stability among others.
- Be updated with your country’s travel advisory. If you have no clue about it, then the more you make sure you do tip #1.
- Have duplicates of travel documents. Accidental loss or damage to your travel documents could mean big trouble, thus, it would be better to prepare for the unexpected by having photocopies.
- Take proper vaccinations. More than adjusting to the time zone, sudden climate changes could get your body react negatively, so make sure you get your shots before traveling.
- Learn the local language. While having a translator app is good, knowing how to speak a few local lines is better than a robotic audio that may even mispronounce some words.
- If you haven’t got martial arts’ skills, then at least bring some self-defense items like a pepper spray – or even a Swiss knife that is not only useful for outdoors but could be used for protection, too.
- Consider your length of stay yet travel light and pack only climate friendly clothing, supplies and accessories. Know what’s taboo.
- Pack important and frequently used items in a special bag. Can you imagine the hassle when you have to dig your bag for coins just to pay a rickshaw? Or the stress you would have realizing that your phone is not even in your pocket but in the cargo hold?
- Bring a basic first aid kit. While there may be hospitals or health centers wherever we may go, it would be a no-brainer to bring a first aid kit with you in your travels. Like, wouldn’t it be a hassle if we had to go to a hospital just because of a tiny bruise?
- As much as possible, book in a hostel that is near your purpose for traveling. Proximity adds assurance to security. Makes sense?
- Check-in with your embassy. For extra assurance, wouldn’t it be reassuring that your country knows where you are exactly?
- Know where the police and proper authorities are. Accidents, petty crimes or even getting lost where you are can happen. So, knowing where you could get the nearest help would be telling.
- Leave valuables at your hotel’s safety vault during your stay. Does it make sense to keep bringing all your valuables when you got hotel service that offers top-notch security? Enjoy your every adventure with less baggage, with literally less baggage!
- Follow local laws and regulations. You can not just come in and explore some place with your ego – like, thinking you are a paying customer and that the customer is always right. Rules and laws are what makes a place safe and orderly, if you want to be safe, then follow local laws and regulations.
- Familiarize yourself with the transportation system. Every place or country has some kind of structure in how they go about things especially in commuting, so to make your visit more efficient and comfortable, it would be good to know not only where certain places are but also how to get there faster and cheaper.
- Stay in safe zones – whether it’s having fun at night or walking only in well-lit areas with decent people. While we know of some places to be of high risk, not all low risk areas are really low risk. What if you suddenly encounter an intoxicated guy in the dark? People drink but if they lose their mind from it, a low risk place could suddenly turn into a high risk area.
- Make sure of your water sources. Same goes with food. If you are really a traveler, experiencing local delicacies is a must. However, be mindful of not only what your belly can take, but if the food is really safe to consume. One clue would be – if many locals are eating it, in that particular place, then the food must be safe. As for water, it would be advisable to drink only from your hotel, a good restaurant or just buy your water if ever.
- Be friendly and respectful. Appreciate the culture. This probably is the most overlooked aspect of safety – and that is ‘friendliness’. No, you do not necessarily have to shake hands with everyone in sight but at least let that positive aura shine in you. Whether you need direction or help, being friendly and respectful would go a long way towards having that great travel experience.
Happy and safe travels!