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Some of the best travel tips address safety during the trip. For example, if the traveler is leaving the country, it is important to learn the emergency number in the destination country. It is also vital to keep wallets and valuables out of sight or at least firmly secured to avoid being the victim of theft. Even if theft does happen, having a good travel insurance plan can help the traveler continue to have a pleasant vacation. Depending on the plan, travel insurance can also cover missed flights or missing baggage and emergency evacuation of the country.
A lot of travel tips brochures and websites neglect to mention emergency numbers, but their importance cannot be emphasized enough. Most countries have an emergency number to call for firefighter, police, or medical assistance. For example, in the United States this number is 911, while the number 112 covers most of Europe. A traveler can either memorize the destination country’s emergency number, write it down, or save it in his or her phone. While most vacationers will not have a use for the number, those who take travel tips to heart and have the number on hand during an emergency are generally glad they took the time.
While many countries are generally safe, thieves routinely prey upon people who look like tourists and visit tourist attractions. Among the usual but effective safety travel tips is to make it harder for pick-pockets to lift a traveler’s wallet. This can be achieved by placing the wallet in a zipped inner pocket or somewhere else on the body. Generally, it is not recommended to keep wallets in purses or bags in case these are forgotten somewhere or taken by force. Important documents should be kept in a safe place in a hotel or on the traveler’s person.
Lastly, travel insurance plans are sometimes the difference between a ruined vacation and one saved by the prompt replacement of electronics or visas. Travel insurance can also cover health expenses, emergency evacuation, and flight cancellation fees. Insurance companies often state that travel insurance is an incredibly small percentage of the traveler’s overall traveling expenses, and this is frequently very true. If only some travel tips are heeded, this one should be among them, simply due to the ease of returning to the home country if important documents are lost. There is also some peace of mind that comes with knowing a company is actively working to make a vacation a safe and pleasant one.
@browncoat - I think it's a real shame that being attacked is still a concern for female travelers, but of course it is. Even if it wasn't I would still expect people to be respectful of local forms of dress.
My best travel safety tip is something that often gets forgotten in the quest to experience strange and wonderful cultures, but believe me, you'll regret forgetting it.
Only eat food that is safe. Safe means it's been washed in bleach (if it is fresh fruits and vegetables) or it's been recently cooked to boiling point.
In a lot of countries they don't have the same laws and/or attitudes to sanitation. Every person who has touched your apple, from the person who picked it, to the person who sold it to you, could be adding their own flavor of germ to it, and if you don't make sure to wash it correctly (a rinse of water doesn't cut it!) you'll find out about that soon enough.
I would say one thing that I have seen many tourists do wrong is not research the culture that they are going to be travelling in. I'm thinking specifically of people who dress inappropriately for the country they are visiting.
There are countries where wearing shorts is the equivalent of walking around with your breasts out.
Now you can argue that you shouldn't have to change your habits in order to visit another country, but if a woman from that country came here and walked around in very inappropriate clothes, she might give local men the "wrong impression" and in some cultures there is much less social protection for women than you might be used to.
What I'm saying is, be respectful of local customs of dress, and they will, hopefully, be more likely to be respectful of you, particularly in regard to your safety.
The best safety travelling tip I have is to make sure you have a little bag in which to keep your valuables, and keep that bag out of sight under your clothes at all time.
Sleep with it on, if you can. Try to plan ahead so you never have to actually pull it out and show people where it is.
This might sound paranoid, but honestly, when you are overseas, it's better to be safe than sorry.
I have heard quite a few stories from friends and family who have had their wallet stolen, or their cash lifted, or whatever, and it has ruined their trip. It happened in the airport, half the time.
And if your passport goes missing, that's the worst.
That means hours, if not days of waiting for a new one, and possibly you'll get kicked out the country as well, or even get unwillingly stuck in the country.