With the 4th of July just around the corner and the summer heat bearing down on us, many people will travel. Whether for work, solo, or with family to a familiar destination or an exotic location it’s important to keep safety in mind. We hear stories oft travelers being robbed or victims of a crime. Not to sound the alarm, but it’s important to realize malicious people are looking to take advantage of travelers. Gross negligence can also be a factor, as in recent weeks from deaths in the Dominican Republic. The well-traveled and seasoned team at Interfor will impart our top 5 travel tips.
Check travel advisories
The State Department regularly issues updates and advisories on certain locations. Political circumstances in some countries may raise red flags for travel. Better safe than sorry, so please check for any updates if you’re uncertain about a location’s safety. Also, it’s a good idea to have contact info for the closest consulate in case a political situation deteriorates while you’re there.
Use social media to know the area
Facebook and Yelp (as well as Google Map and images) allow a firsthand perspective of your destination. Websites like Airbnb can also give you a sense of where you’re going. This information is literally at your fingertips, so do a bit of research. Aside from safety, it’s also a good way to plan an itinerary for your trip.
Be cautious with payments
It’s a good idea to let your bank know you’ll be traveling, in the case your credit cards are stolen. Don’t carry excess cash. Use new payment platforms such as Apple Pay if possible. Another tip: keep cash and your credit cards in separate places; in a robbery, you’ll be glad you did.
Use the cloud
Having digital copies of important documents is key, at no cost. No matter what happens – theft, water damage, or misplaced luggage – those documents will be accessible on your phone, on a cloud solution like Google Drive or Dropbox. Also, make sure you have a password on your smartphone so no one has access to those personal files. Be extra careful using public Wi-Fi; while it might seem cheap and easy, it’s hacker haven.
Carry a small first aid kit
While a first aid kit is no substitute for a serious incident, it’s best to keep one around. Items such as bandages, painkillers, and antiseptic come in handy, while wounds or burns not treated can complicate your trip later on.
Summer 2019 is in full swing. Everyone deserves time off, but don’t let your guard down completely. Keep these tips in mind when traveling and enjoy yourself during our favorite time of year. The Interfor team will be here during the summer. Aside from sharing our travel stories, we’re here as a resource for safety.