Going on holiday is one of the most exciting things ever, and it can be pretty easy to lose yourself in your new location, along with your inhibitions when it comes to safety.
The best way to stay safe whilst on holiday, particularly if you’re going to somewhere that is a hot spot for crime thanks to its wealth of tourists (literally) is to try and blend in as much as possible, and try to avoid advertising yourself as a tourist. It’s actually easier than you think, and we’ve come up with a few tips to help you do exactly that.
Use travel apps on your phone instead of maps
Travel apps really are great; just check out the Bravofly iOS app for example! And there are also a whole host of ones to help you navigate your way around different parts of the world. This can be a much safer option than walking around with your head in a map, as not only does this show that you don’t know the area, but it also will mean you’re distracted and therefore might be a target to opportunist thieves.
Only consult maps when inside somewhere
If you are a fan of traditional maps and want to continue to use them, you should aim to only consult your map when you can stop somewhere inside; i.e. a cafe, for example. That way, you won’t be walking along the road with a big map.
Avoid using bulky bags where possible
Backpacks are great for lugging all of your stuff around whilst keeping your hands free, so they’re the ideal tool for travellers. However, they can leave you vulnerable to thieves, especially in crowded areas. If you can’t avoid using a big bag, you could invest in an anti-theft bag which will keep you and your stuff much more secure.
Learn a bit of the language
Whilst it’s not likely that you’ll be able to be fluent in the language before you go, it’s a good idea to learn a few basic to intermediate phrases so that you don’t appear just like any other tourist. This will be especially useful when it comes to things like haggling prices, and also for directing a taxi driver who is less likely to take you the long way round if they think you have an idea of where you’re going.
Respect the local customs
If you’re visiting somewhere that has a particularly different culture to the one you’re used to, it can be quite easy to commit a few social faux pas by accident. Most of the time they will be harmless, but you might accidentally end up doing something which could cause serious offence and could land you in trouble with the locals, or even the law. Therefore doing some research can be a really good idea to help avoid these scenarios as best as possible.