Travel Safely: 7 Tips on Avoiding Tourist Crime on Your Vacation

If you are planning a vacation, one of the last things you want to plan for is tourist crime. Traveling is a time where you plan on enjoying yourself without worrying about work and all of your other regular obligations. While traveling is certainly fun, it can become a nightmare when you fall victim to tourist crime. A large percentage of travelers fall victim to scams and tourist crime because they did not know what to look for and what to avoid on their excursion. Here are some valuable tips on avoiding tourist crime so you can create memories without all of the complications.

Emirates Air Line - London

Make Sure You Know Local Problems

One of the first things you should do before your trip is research the local problems in the area where you plan on traveling. Just because pickpocketing is a problem in some areas does not mean this is a serious problem everywhere. A generalized description of the problems against tourists around the world is not going to help you unless you are ready to prepare for all of the possibilities. To understand the local problem, you should review and analyze tourist crime data reports. This will give you a good idea of what you should prepare for so you are ready to be more cautious in certain situations. Tourist crime data can be accessed online or through travel agencies in the area. Make sure you ask each of the following questions when you are researching the local problems:

* Why are these crimes committed against tourists?

* What are circumstances surrounded by the crimes?

* What types of property are commonly stolen?

* What areas do these crimes occur in?

* What time of day do the crimes occur?

* Are there patterns in the victim’s age or gender?

Tips on Avoiding Crime in Different Scenarios

Now that you know what to look for when you are researching local problems, you need to know how to avoid the crimes that you find are very popular in a specific locale. Knowing what the problems are will not do you much good if you are not sure how to avoid becoming a victim. Not all of these tips relate to every travel destination. Make sure you sift through the following list to narrow down the tips that will apply during your vacation.

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1. Know Your Surroundings

Knowing your surroundings can make a big difference when you are traveling. If this is your first time traveling to an area, you should download maps and create an itinerary. Travel densely populated areas in the daytime and avoid seedy areas at night. When traveling alone, you may want to avoid seedy areas entirely because offenders do target those who are alone and unfamiliar with an area.

2. Do Not Fall For Ploys That Will Distract You

In some areas, criminals will try to distract you so they can steal from you. Some will jostle in a crowd, ask you to hold their child, or even spill something on you so you are distracted. Do not fall for these ploys even if they seem innocent.

3. Never Carry Large Amounts of Cash

This will apply wherever you are traveling. Cash is never claimed when it is lost or stolen. Because pickpocketing and purse-snatching is very common, you should carry traveler’s cheques instead of cash. Make sure you leave some cheques behind and never sign them before cashing them.

No. 96 R, Santorini, page 172, 1000 Places To See Before You Die, travel book cover shot of Santorini

Just because you live in Orlando does not mean you have to stay in your hometown to have fun. If you are prepared, it can reduce your chances of becoming a victim. If you do fall victim as a tourist, make sure you consult a reputable attorney Orlando to discuss the incident. An Orlando criminal lawyer specializing in tourist crime can put the pieces back together and make life a bit easier when you get back into your routine of things.


About the author

Molly Henshaw is a freelance travel writer based in the DC metro area. She is also a contributing author for the Orlando law firm of Katz & Phillips. When traveling always be aware of your surroundings and be proactive before going abroad. It is important for your safety!