When you’re satisfying your wanderlust, please be sure to do it in the safest way possible. Here are seven tips for staying as safe as possible on your travels.
1. Make extra copies of ALL travel documents
If you lose your passport, you’ve lost everything. Make sure you have copies of all your documents so that if something goes missing you have a fallback.
2. Stay alert while drinking
If you’re in a foreign place, you have to be even more vigilant than usual. If you’re drinking, still stay aware. Watch your bag, know where to get taxis before you’re too inebriated, and write down your hotel’s address. Or, adopt a buddy system with a friend/trustworthy person from the backpackers so you can party safely, together.
3. Carry two wallets (and cellphones, if possible)
One of each will act as a ‘steal me’. If someone tries to rob you, you can hand them the dummy wallet and phone. Keep them in a more conspicuous place on your person so if someone tries to pickpocket you they come away with the fakes.
4. Research your routes before hopping into taxis
It’s fine travelling by taxi but it’s a good idea to have some basic notion of where you’re headed. If your driver’s going left when your map is clearly telling you to go right, you know you’ve got a problem (or just a really bad driver).
5. Separate your sources of cash; don’t keep everything in one place
If your bag containing all your cash, cards, travel documents and equipment gets stolen or goes missing … well, you’re pretty screwed. Don’t leave your hotel with absolutely all your worldly goods on you – leave some behind just to be on the safe side.
Related: Meandering Around Milan
6. Be slightly sceptical of all strangers
We know this seems a bit Scrooge-y but if strangers are being just a little toooo nice to you it might be a good idea to take them with a pinch of salt. Many scams involve overly friendly locals that just happen to be in the right place at the right time.
7. Don’t look like such a tourist!
No weird khaki shorts with long socks and massive backpacks, if possible. If you’re strolling around really obviously with your huge camera and fanny pack, you’re basically wearing a giant TARGET on your forehead. Try to be as inconspicuous as you can.