It’s a sad truth that your valuables are at risk when you’re traveling abroad. As you often stand out from the crowd and thieves recognise that you’re probably carrying an expensive camera or more cash than local people, you’re a moving target. That said, it’s not hard to keep your valuables safe abroad – here are five tips to help.
1. Carry as little as possible
When you’re out and about, don’t take anything with you that isn’t absolutely necessary. The less you’re carrying, the less there is to steal. You might think you need to take your passport around with you in certain places, but a photocopy will do most of the time. Only take out the cash you need for the day, and don’t take your camera if you don’t plan to take many photos.
2. Use hotel safes or padlocks
Unfortunately, things go missing in hotel rooms all the time, so to keep your valuables safe abroad by locking things away whenever possible. If there isn’t a safe in your hotel room, ask at reception and they may have safe boxes in private areas. When staying at a hostel, use the lockers usually provided to keep your things safe. Some might require you to bring your own padlock, so check hotel details beforehand. If not, many sell padlocks at reception.
3. Be alert
A criminal’s perfect victim is someone who isn’t pay attention when they put their phone down or leave their handbag wide open on public transport. To avoid getting robbed, be aware of the people around you and act confidently. If a thief thinks you’re aware of them or know they look shifty, they will more than likely back off and choose someone else to target. The last thing they want to do is get caught so they always want to catch a tourist unawares – don’t be that tourist.
4. Don’t flaunt valuable
Don’t wear your camera around your neck and don’t flash cash around. By doing so, you’re setting yourself up to be the perfect target for a thief. The more you can cover up or put away your valuables, the more chance you have of them being safe. In some particularly dangerous parts of the world, thieves will snatch at grab at valuables, especially ones that they can obviously see and plan on taking.
5. Avoid dodgy neighborhoods
Wherever you are in the world, there’s usually a rough part of town you want to avoid. Most guidebooks will let you know where these places are, and failing that someone who works at your hotel’s reception will also know. These places are best not explored when you’re carrying valuables, which might take a bit of planning on your part if you want to go there for a particular reason. Especially aim to avoid these places at night, when crime rates tend to spike.
How do you keep your valuables safe abroad?