Travelers are prime targets for criminals. Here are some ways to protect yourself at airports, on the road and in your hotel room.
- Keep your eye on your bags—especially a laptop computer or other valuable gear — at all times. Don’t let anyone but uniformed airline personnel handle or watch them.
- Be wary of mishaps, like someone bumping you or spilling a drink … they may be staged to set you up for a robbery.
- Clutch your pocketbook close to your body or carry your wallet in an inside front pocket … or wear a concealed money pouch.
- Don’t draw attention to jewelry, cameras or other expensive items.
- Study your route on a map before you start.
- If using a rental car, make sure it is in good operating condition and learn how to operate all controls before starting out.
- Keep maps and rental agreements concealed, and store luggage out of sight in the trunk.
- Keep car doors locked and park in lighted areas near entrances.
- Have keys ready so you can enter the car quickly … after checking the back seat and floors.
- If bumped by another car, rather than getting out you might want to signal the other driver to follow you to a police station or other place where you would feel safe.
- Don’t leave your luggage unattended.
- Make sure your room has a peephole and deadbolt lock on the door and window locks … and use them.
- Caution hotel personnel against saying your room number within earshot of others.
- In case of emergency, know where exits, elevators and public phones are located.
- Leave valuables at home or keep them in the hotel safe.
- If going out, ask hotel staff about neighborhood safety and areas to avoid.
- If someone claiming to be a hotel employee shows up at your door unexpectedly, don’t let them in without first calling the front desk for confirmation.
- Don’t display your room key or leave it where it may get stolen.