Preparing for the worst case scenario pre-trip might not sound like the best way to start a relaxing getaway, but we both firmly believe that a touch of paranoia while preparing for a trip is best. We’re both quite scatter-brained, and we seem to attract trouble, so we’ve developed some habits that has saved us many-a-time.
Keep in mind these basic tips are habits we’ve developed, over time you’ll probably develop your own set of ‘travelling rules’ that are more tailored to your needs. In the meantime, these are as good a starting point as any!
- All hail the modern saviour; Cloud storage
Atri used to keep photocopies of all her documents in a pouch, hidden in her suitcase. Granted, storing all her personal information in a suitcase was not necessarily the safest of practices, but it was the best option. And who would go looking in a bra bag anyway? Luckily, technology has at last come to our aid!
These days you can scan and store your documents in the cloud storage of your choice, or simply email them to yourself before you go. Scan your ID, passport, driving licence… Stuff you usually have on you, just in case you end up misplacing them. For the extra paranoid traveller – keep a handy folder
with all the documents you might need should you lose your passport.
- Always know where your nearest embassy is
It’s not so difficult to Google this information, but just in case reception in shit, keep your embassy’s information handy. Keep it on a card in your wallet, or keep it in your phone.
Being travellers of the female kind, we’ve always been extra cautious when it comes to safety. Not to say that we can’t kick ass, but we’re not naïve. It’s always to be better to be safe than sorry. Knowing our last resort safe space is only a call away is one way of keeping a safety net in sight.
- Money matters
It goes without saying – don’t keep all your eggs in one basket. Split your bills and stash them away safely in separate pouches. If you lose one, you can still live on the funds you have stashed elsewhere! Same goes for debit cards and credit cards, don’t keep them in the same place! (Keep a note of your debit card and/or credit card number that’s on the front of the card and store them in your cloud storage – the numbers can help the bank block access to your cards quicker!)
Luckily for us, internet access is quite easily found these days. Make sure your Paypal account is available for use! Although not every place accepts payment from Paypal accounts, it’s a safe bet that more modern places will have this payment option.
- Secure your belongings
Always keep a spare padlock with you, just in case your lock breaks or is tampered with. Make sure your luggage is always secure and locked, even in storage. ‘Secure’ here has a double meaning, keep your luggage secure so that you don’t lose things, and secure so that no one can sneak things in. Remember – the authorities will hold you responsible for the contents of your luggage. It’s not always a case of ‘innocent until proven guilty’.
- Always keep your passport safe!
We can’t stress this enough! PASSPORT! SAFE! MUST!
Some places require foreigners to show their real passport for entry, a quick internet search before you leave your hotel will help you check if the places you’ll be visiting will be one of these places. But if it’s not completely necessary to have your real passport in hand, stash your real passport in a safe place and just carry around a printed copy.
It really is better to be safe than sorry. Travelling isn’t actually a scary thing, and danger doesn’t lurk around every corner… but safety precautions never hurt anyone in the long run. It’s like sticking on a seatbelt when you get in a car. You’re not expecting an accident, but that seatbelt might be the thing that keeps you safe should anything happen!