Tag Archives: Travel Safety

Travel Safety Refresher

It’s vacation season, the perfect time to get away and explore new places. Plus, with RWA’s National Conference coming up next week and so many people traveling in for the event, I thought it an appropriate time to offer a safety refresher.  Whether your summer adventures take you a short distance from home or oceans away, here are a few tips to help you enjoy your travels safely.

  • If possible travel with at least one travel companion.
  • When traveling out of the country do your research and be aware of local customs, laws, etc.
  • Do not pack valuables in your suitcase.  Bags must be unlocked or locked with approved padlocks. If they are locked with an unapproved lock, screeners will break the lock to gain access.
  • Be mindful of your luggage at all times and do not pack so much that you will be lugging excessively heavy bags.
  • Pack medicines and extra eyeglasses in your hand luggage so they will be available in case your checked luggage is lost.
  • Learn important fact about your destination that could affect your health (high altitude or pollution, types of medical facilities, required immunizations, availability of required pharmaceuticals, etc.). Key health information can be found at the Travelers’ Health page of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) website at http://www.cdc.gov/travel.
  • Carry your money and personal objects in a bag or purse that you can hide under your clothes.
  • Use a business card as your luggage tag. Try not to use your home address.
  • Never tell anyone that you are traveling alone. If someone persistently asks, don’t hesitate to lie.
  • If attending a conference do not wear your name badge when you leave the event hotel.
  • If you are going to take a taxi, which you probably will while at RWA, being friendly and sharing a little light conversation with the driver is fine, but keep personal information to yourself. Don’t give out too much information about your plans or yourself. If you’re feeling uncomfortable or threatened have the driver let you out of the cab in a busy, familiar, or popular place.
  • Avoid going out alone at night and as always TRUST YOUR INSTINCTS!!

Please don’t hesitate to add any other tips you have for staying safe on your travels this summer. If you are going to RWA National we hope to see you there, and if you’re free stop in and see us Thursday, at 2:00 pm for our Kick Butt Heroes: Using Martial Arts in Your Action Scenes workshop!

Hotel Safety

In light of the approaching vacation season, here’s a repost of these great tips on hotel safety from Kathleen Kuck, who guest blogged for Attacking the Page in September.  I would never have thought of some of these tips.  Thanks, Cass!

Read Kathleen’s post on Handguns and Your Character.

  • Look at user type of reviews on line to see if this hotel is in a good neighborhood.  Most reviews include some of the safety of the area and what they saw as problems.
  • Ask someone in the area you might know for recommendations for a safe hotel.
  • Ask if the room will have a peep hole and a deadbolt lock. Bar lock is a plus also.
  • If you are a female traveling alone book your room under MR. and MRS. or just 1st initial.
  • Tell the check in clerk to write room number down and to not announce it to the lobby.
  • Try not to be on the ground floor with windows that open to the outside.
  • Try to get a room that faces interior hallways or courtyard not the parking lot.
  • Don’t use any public area computers for personal or secure internet things.  Many business center computers are vulnerable to keyloggers and pose a great risk.
  • Don’t leave your laptop in your room unless you must and then only with a cable lock. Set a password for your computer prior to leaving it if you don’t have one set. If a crook can get access to your computer he can get all the info off of it quickly. Cable lock computer and then put it in the computer bag and lock the bag.
  • Most WI-FI’s at the hotels are not real secure and nothing should be sent that is secret.
  • Never open up your door to any stranger and use all the locks on the door while in room.
  • Don’t open the door just because someone says security or maintenance.  Get the employee’s name and call the front desk to confirm before opening the door.
  • Avoid giving out your room number to anyone you meet in the bar or the trip.
  • Avoid leaving jewelry or credit cards in the room.
  • Crooks only need to write down your credit card number and your security code.
  • Employees do have a way to open the safe in the room.
  • Some offer safety deposit boxes at the counter. Employees might have access still.
  • Lock your baggage if possible. (Airline locks are fine)
  • Avoid the scam this is the front desk calling please update your credit card information.
  • Never leave the plastic keys when you checkout. They can contain personal information.
  • If possible request a room closest to the elevators, more foot traffic, less secluded, more opportunity for crook to be seen
  • Try to avoid a room above the 10th floor; fire equipment usually does not reach that high.

Safety Tip of the Week: Hotel Security

This post is courtesy of Kathleen Kuck, who guest blogged for Attacking the Page in September.  I would never have thought of some of these tips.  Thanks, Cass!

Read Kathleen’s post on Handguns and Your Character.

  • Look at user type of reviews on line to see if this hotel is in a good neighborhood.  Most reviews include some of the safety of the area and what they saw as problems.
  • Ask someone in the area you might know for recommendations for a safe hotel.
  • Ask if the room will have a peep hole and a deadbolt lock. Bar lock is a plus also.
  • If you are a female traveling alone book your room under MR. and MRS. or just 1st initial.
  • Tell the check in clerk to write room number down and to not announce it to the lobby.
  • Try not to be on the ground floor with windows that open to the outside.
  • Try to get a room that faces interior hallways or courtyard not the parking lot.
  • Don’t use any public area computers for personal or secure internet things.  Many business center computers are vulnerable to keyloggers and pose a great risk.
  • Don’t leave your laptop in your room unless you must and then only with a cable lock. Set a password for your computer prior to leaving it if you don’t have one set. If a crook can get access to your computer he can get all the info off of it quickly. Cable lock computer and then put it in the computer bag and lock the bag.
  • Most WI-FI’s at the hotels are not real secure and nothing should be sent that is secret.
  • Never open up your door to any stranger and use all the locks on the door while in room.
  • Don’t open the door just because someone says security or maintenance.  Get the employee’s name and call the front desk to confirm before opening the door.
  • Avoid giving out your room number to anyone you meet in the bar or the trip.
  • Avoid leaving jewelry or credit cards in the room.
  • Crooks only need to write down your credit card number and your security code.
  • Employees do have a way to open the safe in the room.
  • Some offer safety deposit boxes at the counter. Employees might have access still.
  • Lock your baggage if possible. (Airline locks are fine)
  • Avoid the scam this is the front desk calling please update your credit card information.
  • Never leave the plastic keys when you checkout. They can contain personal information.
  • If possible request a room closest to the elevators, more foot traffic, less secluded, more opportunity for crook to be seen
  • Try to avoid a room above the 10th floor; fire equipment usually does not reach that high.

Travel Safety pt 3

When traveling, particularly to large cities, at some point you’ll probably use a taxi or a shuttle to get you where you’re going. Here are just a few tips to consider when hailing a cab.

  • The buddy system is your friend. Try to avoid hailing/riding in a taxi when you are alone. When ever possible travel with a friends or relative.
  • Make arrangements in advance. Call a cab company and schedule a pick up. When the taxi arrives verify with the driver who they are there to pick up and ensure that he/she are from the taxi company that you called.
  • Being friendly and sharing a little light conversation with the driver is fine, but keep personal information to yourself. Don’t give out too much information about your plans or yourself.
  • Upon arriving ask the driver to wait for you to enter your destination if possible.
  • If you are uncomfortable or feel threatened have the driver let you out of the cab in a busy, familiar or popular place.
  • As always  Trust Your Instincts!

Travel Safely part 1

The kids are out of school. The days are long and hot. It’s vacation season, the perfect time to get away and explore new places. Whether your summer adventures take you a short distance from home or oceans away, here are a few tips to help you enjoy your travels safely.

  • If possible travel with at least one travel companion.
  • When traveling out of the country do your research and be aware of local customs, laws, etc.
  • Be mindful of your luggage at all times
  • Carry your money and personal objects in a bag or purse that you can hide under your clothes.
  • Use a business card as your luggage tag. Try not to use your home address.
  • Never tell anyone that you are traveling alone. If someone persistently asks, don’t hesitate to lie.
  • If attending a conference do not wear your name badge when you leave the event hotel.
  • Wear minimal jewelry. Lots of expensive and flashy jewelry makes you an easier target for predators. Also, consider using disposable cameras instead of bringing your digital camera. Expensive cameras are popular targets for thieves.
  • Avoid going out alone at night and as always TRUST YOUR INSTINCTS!!

Please share your thoughts and tips on having safe and fun summer vacations.