When you're traveling through Europe, you might worry that you'll run into trouble. The dangers are obvious: entirely aside from the current threats, there are always people who are willing to lead you astray, dangerous individuals who want your money, and other bad situations that you can find yourself in before you know it.
These travel safety tips will keep you and your family out of trouble—or at least give you the means to help get out of a bad situation if you do fall into one.
1. Remain aware of your surroundings.
It's easy to become enthralled by the scenery or to lose yourself in a map. You could be so caught up in taking a picture that you don't notice anything outside of the frame or so awed by a particular location that you don't see what's going on around you.
There's just one problem: it's the moments when you lose track of what's going on around you that you're the most vulnerable. Instead, make a practice of keeping up with your surroundings. Look all around you on a regular basis. When you're aware of who's close by you and what your options are, you'll be able to more easily…
2. Trust your gut.
Did the directions that were provided by a helpful cab driver land you on a street that you just aren't comfortable with? Is a certain person making you uncomfortable? Don't convince yourself that it's just part of the culture! It's better to risk potentially offending someone or even having to ask for directions a second time than it is to find yourself in a dangerous situation with no way out.
Instead, trust that uncomfortable feeling in your gut. It's often smarter than your head gives it credit for.
3. Don't keep all of your money in one place.
The middle of Europe is not a great place to have to order a new debit card or credit card. Keep some of your traveler's checks or a spare card tucked in a location that isn't obvious to thieves or pickpockets.
4. Scan your important documents and store them with someone you trust back home.
Your passport, visa, and even vital ticket information, along with any other important documents, should be digital so that if they are stolen, you'll be able to reproduce them. You can also photocopy these items and keep copies in your bags, but keep in mind that with digital copies, you can access them more easily no matter what has gone missing.
5. Don't display your personal wealth.
This includes excessive spending, wearing flashy jewelry, or displaying expensive electronics. Wealthy tourists are the perfect targets for thieves, and displaying your wealth too overtly could land you in trouble in a hurry!
Instead, keep expensive items tucked away—or don't bring them with you at all. The last thing you want is for your camera bag to become the target of a Vespa sting or your jewelry to fall into the grasping hands of a pickpocket.
6. Be careful about the chances you take while you're traveling.
If you don't normally participate in risky behavior, now is not the time to learn to scuba dive from a sketchy character you met in a bar on your first night or to go sailing with someone who has no credentials. If you aren't already experienced in the activity you're pursuing, make sure that the instructor is properly certified and has plenty of experience.
A few simple safety precautions while you're on holiday can keep you and your possessions safe and protected—steps that are well worth the effort! If you're ready to start planning the other aspects of your trip, contact us today. We'll help you find a car rental that will keep you ready to roll throughout your time in Europe.
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