Travel Safety – the big story this summer

Amid recent stories of crazy bus driversassaulting lyft drivers and multiple travel advisories – are we being put off travel? Are there any precautions we can take to avoid these situations? This month alone – stories have hit headlines such as that of a Peter Pan driver allegedly locking a woman inside a luggage compartment, sexual assaults being filed against the popular ride sharing app lyft as some serious travel advisories post deaths in Mexico, DR and San Juan and recent shootings in the US. So whether you’re headed overseas or on a road trip, take a look at these tips to make sure you enjoy your getaway in the best way possible.

1. Check for Travel Advisories

Keep yourself up to date with what is going on in a destination and be sure to vet reviews of resorts and destinations to know your risks of traveling there. Especially when it comes to international travel, it’s important that you really do your homework on the areas you plan on visiting. Check the State Department’s travel advisories which have specific posts for each country around the world. Recognize that conditions change rapidly so make sure you check more than once. Along with your travel advisory research, make sure you know and understand the different laws and regulations for your destination.

2. Careful what you ingest

Be adventurous but also sensible with what you ingest or drink in another country (especially medication) and if you have any doubts stick to what you KNOW is safe. To ensure you’re not ingesting any liquid that has been packaged under poor or unhygienic conditions,- turn the bottle upside down and see how the bubbles rise. You should never drink any beverage that contains unidentified particles or sediment. Also if  the price seems too cheap to be true, it probably is – be mindful of cheap, discount products. 

3. Have Emergency Contacts at Home

Once you have a travel plan in place, make sure to tell a trusted friend, relative, or neighbor and leave your schedule with them. This is an important safety step, especially if you’re traveling by yourself. Make sure to check in often to let them know where you’re going, if you change your plans, and when you reach your destination. That way if you don’t check-in, they know that something has gone wrong.

4.. Purchase Travel Insurance

Travel insurance will be your saving grace for those unexpected moments. From lost luggage to medical coverage, travel insurance is an important element for safe travels. There are various plans you can purchase that will meet your specific travel needs. A great reason to obtain coverage is, for example, you need to cancel a non-refundable part of your trip, it can generally help you recover some of those costs.

5. Buddy Up and Be Careful Where You Go

As many of us know, staying in pairs or groups is much safer than being alone. Employ this vacation safety tip when you’re heading to the bars, using public restrooms in busy areas, or getting on public transportation. You’re sure to feel a lot safer if you stay with a buddy during these times. Crowds in unfamiliar territories and heavy visited tourist spots can also be subject to unfortunate events and inevitably susceptible to acts of terrorism or shootings in recent times – they also pose a risk of getting lost or split up from others you are traveling with. If you do decide to visit places like this, be sure to keep you cell phone charged, your personal items close to you and always assign a meeting spot to others should you get lost or something happen.