Keeping Safe on Holiday
It’s essential to keep you and your possessions safe when you’re travelling overseas. One way of doing this is to avoid drawing too much attention to yourself, and keeping your money out of sight.
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) has issued lots of advice on how British travellers can stay safe during their time abroad.
Here are some key points on keeping safe:
Pickpockets operate anywhere and everywhere in the world, so it’s vital you try to protect yourself from them as much as possible. Consider investing in a money belt that can be worn safely and securely underneath clothing and hidden out of sight from any potential pickpockets.
Gentlemen - avoid keeping your wallet and your mobile in your back pocket as it’s easy for these to be removed without you noticing. Don’t put them in button pockets of combat style trousers either, as, to a highly-trained pocket thief removing them is not a problem! Why not use a ‘man bag’ that has secure fastenings and wear it facing inwards.
Don’t carry all your cards on you at any one time. Leave one in your hotel room safe. This way, you can immediately cancel the stolen cards but still have access to money for emergencies.
If you’re travelling with Traveller’s Cheques, then make sure you store the receipt that contains all the serial numbers separately. By keeping the numbers separate, you will be able to have them reissued should the worst happen.
Consider wearing as little jewellery as possible. Excessive jewellery, even costume jewellery which can look lavish and expensive, should be kept to a minimum. Try to wear only the necessary such as your wedding ring. Many tourists have been mugged because they have drew attention to themselves by wearing too much jewellery.
By this we mean, expensive trainers. Try to wear your older, less expensive trainers, avoiding those lovely brand new, bright white trainers. Believe it or not, many a tourist has been knocked to the ground and robbed of their trainers when overseas.
Avoid Becoming a Victim
The biggest piece of advice for any traveller is to be vigilant and observant. Consider your surroundings and don’t stray off the main streets or wander into dubious areas, and do not go down alleyways. Be aware of anyone following you, or perhaps ‘sussing you out’.
Reporting an Incident
If the unthinkable does happen, then the advice from the FCO is that you, in the first instance, report it to the local Police. They should give you an incident number (it’s this number that your insurance company is likely to want to help assist with your claim). You can also contact the Consular who will be able to offer help and advice on what you should do in the event of incidents or emergencies.
Visit www.gov.uk/fco to find the contact details of the Consular in the country in which you are travelling to. It’s always best to make an appointment, rather than just turning up as they are very busy and your trip may be wasted.