How to keep yourself and valuables safe when travelling
As regular travellers through Holiday + Cruise Centre, Lorraine and Stuart have a wealth of travel experience. Here are some of their tips to keep yourself and your valuables safe when travelling.
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Ensuring you have travel insurance is the first priority. Secondly register with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), who provide regular updates about the areas you are travelling too. It also assists DFAT to provide you with support if needed. We all hope our travels go smoothly but it pays to register and it’s free.
In regards to your valuables, Lorraine and Stuart provide the following tips.
• Leave your valuables at home, in particular, anything expensive that can easily be removed. Yes, there are pickpockets looking for opportunities. It only takes a second or two and you probably won’t realise until much later. Stuart takes a cheap watch instead of an expensive one. Lorraine chooses not to take expensive bracelets and necklaces.
• When your carrying cash and cards don’t carry large sums of cash. Consider how much you might want for the day but don’t carry it in the same pocket, spread it around. You see some travellers flashing money around, be discrete when you use cash, eyes are everywhere looking for opportunities.
• If using a carry bag, ensure the handles are strong and not easily cut. When walking, keep away from the roadside, so you’re not a target for a ride-by motorbike snatch and grab.
• Don’t let non-staff members assist you with your suitcases when travelling on public transport. They are either looking for a sizeable tip or to run off with your bags (We did see this happen once).
• When on a train and there is no secure space to store your bags, we bought a small cable lock that we used to lock our bags together (and to a pole if available). This stops run-offs as they cannot manage two bags tied together.
• When out and about take the opportunity to look back and see if people (pickpockets or run by snatchers) are following. If so find a place to stop e.g. a cafe to check a menu or a market stall. They will move on if they think you are on to them. Locals who spot them following you may discretely let you know. We had two women in France let us know that people were targeting our camera, so we quickly hopped onto a tram.
• Another scam is where someone drops a ring and pretends it’s yours. They then try to force you to pay for it. Just ignore them and keep moving. This one is popular in France.
However, please don’t be put off by any of our tips. There are millions of people travelling around the world. Just be a conscious and smart traveller while you are out enjoying the world.