Everyone's travel experience is different, so despite what other travelers might advise, travel precautions need to be considered. Whether you are an experienced traveler or not, taking travel precautions is a must. On my recent trip to Jamaica, I knew I was traveling alone, so I took precautions to protect and keep myself safe. But it's not just when you are traveling alone that travelers need to take precautions. It's an important consideration no matter the type of travel or destination. Here are a few things to consider for your travel health and safety.
You should always research your destination. Whether you have been to the destination before or it is your first time and what you may not have considered an issue previously may have changed since your last visit. The Department of State website is a great place to start when researching travel destinations. Jamaica has had a high travel advisory due to crime, but it is significantly lower at all-inclusive resorts, which is one of the reasons I chose to stay at one. It's expected that travelers will not always be familiar with the areas they stay in, but researching before you travel will help you know if one area may be more advantageous to stay in over another.
Don't draw attention to yourself, and avoid wearing or carrying expensive clothing and jewelry. Having grown up in the Caribbean, I was familiar with the culture and people. However, the travel advisory for jamaica mentioned crime, so I was particularly conscious of only wearing costume jewelry and nothing that I would be heartbroken about losing. Although many people asked if I was traveling alone, I did not always volunteer that information, and I was cautious when heading back to my room or walking about the property. In addition, I never carried more cash on me than I meant to spend, and I carried it in different areas so that I knew what to take out when needed.
Consider travel insurance. It is not just for travel interruptions or cancellations. It can be tremendously beneficial in unfortunate circumstances when on vacation. Many travelers are so caught up in having a good time that they are blindsided when accidents or incidences occur. As a flight attendant, I have had upset passengers returning from vacation with their loved ones as cargo beneath them or left in a foreign hospital. The cost of hospitalizations, ambulance services, or body transport can be costly. The medical benefits of travel insurance often include emergency medical coverage as well as medical evacuation. Some health plans may not be applicable when traveling, so this is a precaution that travelers should consider.
Safeguard your documents and personal items at all times. If there is a hotel safe, please use it, but if your luggage has a combination lock or can be locked, this will work as well. My hotel room had a safe, but I chose to use my carry-on as a safe. I was on an all-inclusive resort, and there was no need to walk with money or credit cards. I felt more comfortable using my carry-on to stow my wallet and passport. No hotel or property can guarantee that the staff who has access to your room is without ill intent, so always take precautions.
I hope these ideas have provided food for thought on your next journey. Stay safe and travel. As always, your comments are appreciated.
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