The 17 Best Travel Safety Tips

Travel safety

Many look at the world as if it is dangerous, but believe it or not, it is quite the opposite. Sure, there are some dangers out there, but they’re a minority. If you follow these travel safety tips, you are more likely to get in trouble in your home town than traveling.

Travel safety
Safe Air Travel

1. Don’t Pet Stray Animals

It’s hard to resist the urge to pet a cute stray dog or cat, but it’s not a good idea because they could sink their teeth into your skin. Plus, stray animals could be carrying rabies and other diseases. Also, avoid feeding monkeys for the same reasons. They might be cute, but they are wild and can give you serious problems you just don’t need.

Once while in Paraguay I saw the monkeys steal a mans shoes right off of his feet. He was sitting and feeding them fruits.

The slip on loafers he was wearing while dangling his feet were easy prey for these skilled thieves and off they went with them.

He never did get them back. I’m sure somewhere they have a pile of tourists shoes a few feet high, because it didn’t look like the first time they had done this.

2. Avoid Public Displays of Affluence

When you’re traveling abroad, you probably have more money than the locals. Avoid wearing gold jewelry and carrying around an expensive camera, because you are only broadcasting your wealth. This will make you a target for thieves.

Unless you fancy yourself a professional photographer, just carry a point and shoot. The one that I carry is the Canon PowerShot G7 X Digital Camera – Wi-Fi Enabled
and it outputs the best images I’ve ever seen in a pocket sized camera, by far. Seriously, you won’t be able to tell that they weren’t taken by a high end camera. The reason is it has a full 1 inch CMOS sensor so that the saturation is the same as if you were using a much larger camera.

3. Your Travel Companion Could Get You in Trouble

You probably love your travel companion, but they could be your worst enemy. Some travel companions put other people’s safety at risk. They may be arrogant, which will aggravate a situation or they may ask you to help out a person that you normally wouldn’t approach. Don’t give in to their peer pressure, make sure you stand your ground. If they continue to be unsafe and ignore our travel safety tips, you may want to consider going separate ways.

4. Make Sure You Have Travel Insurance

If you get injured or sick while traveling abroad, the travel insurance will help you. Without insurance, hospital costs could run up to thousands of dollars, even if it is a small injury.

5. Keep Your Money Sources in Separate Places

You probably keep all of your money sources (bank cards, checks, etc.) in your wallet. However, you shouldn’t do this while you’re traveling. Keep at least one card in a different place. If you lose your cards while you’re traveling, it’s going to be difficult for you to get replacements and being without money in a foreign country isn’t fun at all.

6. Get Vaccinated

Before you leave, visit your doctor in order to get all of the necessary vaccinations for the destinations you plan on traveling to. During this time, ask your doctor about the health precautions you should follow.

7. Be Careful Using Your Credit Card at Internet Cafes

Using your credit card at Internet cafes isn’t a good idea, because they could have keylogging software or hardware on the computer – this will record your key strokes, so the criminal can easily take your credit card information (not necessarily the owner of the café).

8. Don’t Go to a Foreign Country to Perfect Something

Learning how to ride a bike, jet-ski or motorbike in a foreign country isn’t a good idea. Take Thailand as an example, 38 people a day die in scooter-related accidents. Some travel insurance policies won’t cover certain injuries, such as scooter-related injuries, so check the policy to see what it covers. But, don’t learn how to scooter by renting a scooter in Thailand. Or learn to jet ski by renting one in Aruba. You’re increasing your odds of getting into a bad situation.

Protect Your Documents While Traveling
Protect Your Documents While Traveling

9. Scan All Important Documents

Scan all of your important travel documents and email them to yourself.

Back in the day, people use to take photocopies of their visas, travel insurance, passports, etc. and keep them in their luggage. These days, going digital is the best route to take – this way, if your bags go missing, you will still have your documents.

10. Hand it Over

This is a simple rule that many people have a hard time following – if you are being mugged, give over your watch, wallet, etc. If you have insurance, this shouldn’t be that big of a deal. You shouldn’t go risking your life over material items. Leave all of your irreplaceable stuff, such as your grandma’s necklace, at home. Just hand it over so that you can walk away uninjured. You can always buy more stuff. But, laying in the street bleeding in a foreign land is no joke.

11. Be Careful Where you Keep Your Wallet/Purse

Don’t keep your wallet/purse in your jeans’ back pocket, because it could easily get stolen. Instead, you can use a money belt that fastens inside your shirt. Or at a minimum keep it in your front pants pocket. Much harder to pick pocket.
12. Keep an Eye on Your Belongings

This is obvious but I feel the need to talk about it, because people still do this. Travelers have a tendency to leave their bags hanging from the back of chairs when they’re at restaurants. Don’t do this. Instead, keep your belongings on your lap or if you keep them at your feet, wrap the strap around your leg.

Check the Small Print and Certificates of Instructors

If you plan on doing something risky, such as scuba diving or bungee jumping, make sure you check the small print and certificates of instructors. There may be a reason that course you found is cheaper than the others – do your research on the instructors.

If you’re traveling alone, here are some solo travel safety tips you can use when going solo.

13. Don’t Get Distracted

If anyone, even children come up to you holding something in front of you, push them away immediately and protect your belongings. This is a famous distraction people tend to use in order to get their hands on other people’s valuables.

In many countries they will send the children after you selling gum or carved trinkets. Then, they have others waiting for you to show how much money you have so they can take it.

Cruise Ship Travel Safety
Cruise Ship Travel Safety

14. Make Sure You Secure Your Luggage

When you’re carrying everything around with you, it is important that you keep it safe and sound. Since you’re alone, you can’t ask someone to watch your luggage for you and you should never trust a stranger with it. This means you need to keep the luggage in your view at all times. You may want to invest in a lock to put on the suitcases.

15. Secure Your Laptop

Amongst the safety tips when traveling alone, we cannot forget about the laptop. If you are a “work-anywhere” type of entrepreneur, your laptop is probably one of your most important items you are carrying. Not only is it needed for work, it probably cost a lot of money as well. There are certain precautions and measures you can take to secure your laptop, such as a laptop lock. You also have to think about the type of bag you’re carrying your laptop in. Yes, there’s some pretty fancy bags out there, but you may want to tone it down a bit because it will entice criminals to want to rob you.

16. Stay Alert

There you are, in a city you’re probably not familiar with, so you definitely need to stay alert. If you see threatening looking people around you, walk confidently in the direction you came, without getting your map out – stay in a “touristy” area.

17. Try Not to Stand Out

The trick is to blend in with the locals – on your first day, take a look at how they dress and try to dress like them. The trick is, to try not to look like a tourist – don’t carry a camera around your neck, don’t flash the tourist map around and don’t wear sandals with white socks.

If you plan on traveling alone, you definitely need to keep these solo travel safety tips in mind. Remember, don’t ever let your guard down.

Two Bonus Travel Safety Tips For You

18. Use A Camera Lanyard

If you’re using your camera like the great one I recommended above attach the lanyard and each time that you take it out to use it slide your hand in the lanyard.

The reason is; most camera thefts are grab and go. This is to say that; they mostly attempt to grab your camera and run. If they are not successful very few if any will attempt to take it again and will instead just run.

This also helps keep you from dropping your camera by accident while engaged in the moment leaning over a railing to get that once in a lifetime shot. So, it’s a great practice to get into anyway.

19. Don’t Let Them Swarm You

When overseas, if a group of kids swarm you asking you to read something out loud, wanting to sell you something or telling you how great or pretty you are, get them away from you without hesitation.

You may be the best looking person on the planet, but, 99.9% of the time they are robing you.

The thing is, most of the time you won’t even feel it. There will be a swarm touching you pleading with you to buy gum, read something or another ploy. Then, like magic they scatter and you’re missing multiple items.

Don’t hit them, they are children after all. But, do whatever it takes to get away from them fast.

Yes, these are safety tips, but never forget why you came. You went there to have fun, so go have some fun then!










Packing And Travel Tips for Air Travel

Airplane for air travel

Before you get on that flight, there are some important air travel tips you should keep in mind. Below, we have packing tips for air travel, flying tips, and planning tips for traveling on a plane.

Packing And Travel Tips for Air Travel

Air Travel Tips
Air Travel Tips

Stash Samples – Take advantage of those freebie offers throughout the year and save them up for your next trip. The samples normally come in a smaller bottle, which will fit perfectly inside your suitcase. Places such as Kiehls and Sephora have a tendency to give away three free samples with their online orders.

Buy a Unique Suitcase – Many people have a tendency to use ribbons and bows in order to make their suitcase stand out from the crowd. However, the problem with this is they have a tendency to be ripped off during the transporting process. Instead of using ribbons and bows, buy a suitcase that is a unique color, such as bright red or bright blue.

Pack Electronics in a Single Layer – When people toss their electronics in their suitcase without thinking, it gets all jumbled up together. This makes it hard to determine what is inside the suitcase when it goes through the X-ray machine. In order to lower your chances of having to go through a manual inspection, pack all of your electronics in a single layer.

Bring Your Own Blanket and Don’t Forget the Disinfecting Wipes – Unfortunately, those tray tables are hardly ever cleaned, so take your own disinfecting wipes with you so that you can use them. Also, instead of using the pillows and blankets on the plane, bring your own to use as they are generally only washed when they “look” dirty.

Canal D'amour beach,Corfu island, Greece
Canal D’amour beach,Corfu island, Greece

Tips for Flying on a the Plane

Keep Your In-Flight Necessities Where You Can Get to Them – While boarding, you decide you want a book, a piece of gum, or a snack. As you’re looking for these necessities, you block the aisle, causing a delay. Pack your small must-haves in a gallon-size bag that you can use as you put away everything else.

Don’t Forget the Car Seat – Car seats aren’t just for the car – they can be used in planes as well. Not only do they help keep the child safe, they also help them stay calmer, since they are used to being in them.

Call Customer Service – If you have missed a flight, standing in line to rebook with the gate agent can take a lot of time. Instead, pick up your cell phone and call the customer service number (this is a great way to speak with someone faster).

Planning Tips for Air Travel

When Buying Your Ticket – Make sure you buy the ticket under the exact name that appears on your ID. Yes, “Betsy” may be a nickname for “Elizabeth,” but it may not appear this way to a desk agent, security officer, or anyone who may check your ID before you board the plane.

Foreign Document Requirements – Some countries, like Kenya, Russia, and India require each individual to have a visa before they enter. Others, like South Africa, will only allow you to enter if you have a traveler’s passport that contains at least two blank pages that are un-stamped. Before making your flight reservations, you need to be aware of these requirements.

Be sure to head over to our home page A Passion For Traveling and start there for all the best travel tips around, and did I mention they’re free!

Enjoy your travels, that’s the point, right!


Travel Websites Should…

You know when you find a travel website online and at first it looks really cool, so you dive right in. You’re all excited to see what gems they have uncovered that other travelers have missed.

Then, you realize they have an ok story about what happened at the airport or something. But, there’s no meat to it. They don’t know what you’re looking for in travel websites at all.

Architecture in Brugge.
Architecture in Brugge.

So, that’s why I thought I should write this. I would like to outline what I think a travel website should offer. Why? Because it’s what I want to offer here on A Passion For Traveling.

Sure, not every post will cover all of the things I’m about to list all in one post. In fact most will cover 2 or 3 of those travel tips, deep understandings and really getting to know the locals. But, cumulatively the posts in the section about that area should cover most, if not all of the following things I feel a travel site should encompass.

What Should Good Travel Websites Cover To Be Considered Good?

1. The first thing it should do (and many of them get this part right) is to tell you about the place they are visiting. That’s easy enough, so let’s move on.

2. They should inspire you to travel. Ok, most of them do a pretty good job at this one too. So, let’s head to the next one.

3. A great travel site should tell you what it is really like there, not just the stuff you see on the surface. What I mean by this is that, they need to travel deeper than the other “tourists”.

They need to go where the other surface scratching travelers don’t go. I’m not talking about going anywhere dangerous or even sketchy.

I mean if they are buying fruits from the old wise looking Senora at the Mercado then they should talk with here about how she grows and harvests her fruits. This will many times lead to you getting asked to come and visit their farm once they find out your a travel blogger.

In many cases you’ll also leave with more fruits than you can carry, for free.

In this way you travel deeper. You get to see things others never will and share it with the readers of your travel site.

4. Share what to do and what not to do. Many will cover the same tourist attractions that you find one every site about the area. But few will tell you what to avoid, what areas of the city, town or countryside to stay clear of for your travel safety.

This is just as important as the fun stuff. None of us want to get caught in a sticky situation. So, that knowledge is equally important.

bedouin boys
bedouin boys

5. They need to befriend the locals, so the locals share their hangouts with them. If you’re in with the locals of a country they will often times invite you to their home, share food with you and you’ll have a better time than you would at a restaurant that’s for sure.

The site owners then need to share this information on their travel websites for their readers. There is only one I’ve ever seen who really did this. He’s stopped traveling now to go back to the grind. But, he really did travel deeper.

6. In my humble opinion, travel sites that go deeper should also tell you what things cost there.

As an example: when I was in Paraguay I bought a great breakfast at a sit down restaurant consisting of 2 eggs, sausage, toast, an avocado slice and coffee for $1.75 USD. The food was actually very good. Believe it or not, the coffee was a little too strong instead of being the other way around.

My point here is that this is what I really want to do here on A Passion For Traveling. I want to travel deeper and share that with you. I want my site to be what I would like other travels websites to be like.

I hope you have a magnificent day.

Thank you, Patrick Shelley


A Unique Way To Save On Airfare To Europe

paris in the fall

So, you’re in America and would love to fly to Europe the cheapest way possible.

Don’t we all, the airfare from the USA to Europe can almost be a deal killer depending upon where you’re flying to.

How would you like to know a little tip that can save you a bundle and I do mean a bundle?

Here’s How To Save Big On Your Airfare Tickets To Europe

This method is very creative and requires that you have a little more, to a lot more time to spend enjoying yourself.

What you’re going to do is fly to South America first.

I can hear the questions already. Why? What in the heck for? Why would I want to do that?

Because you’re going to get a longer vacation, see more countries and spend less money doing it.

The Reasons Why It’s So Cheap

cheap tickets
cheap tickets

The airfare from some major cities in South America to Spain is unbelievably cheap. The reasons that it’s such cheap airfare are that;

1. They have millions of people who’s heritage is directly from Spain. So, they have a huge demand for trips from South American cities like Lima, Bogota and Quito direct to Spain.

2. The wages in South America are very low by North American standards. This means that the airlines must adjust their prices in order to serve that market.

When you check prices be sure to check flying from several different cities in South America and check flying into both Barcelona and Madrid. In many cases Madrid can be quite a bit cheaper.

The cheapest flights I’ve found were round trip from Lima to Madrid for $425.00

Here’s How It Works

You can get super cheap tickets to fly to Lima as an example.

You then spend a few days to a week or longer in Lima having fun.

horse drawn cart in Spain
horse drawn cart in Spain

You hop your plane to Spain and then travel to your destination country by plane or train. Spending a couple days in Spain is always nice. Then you can got to most countries in Europe for about a hundred bucks or so round trip. You book that flight separately. If you book it as a continuing flight you won’t get that South America to Spain discount.

What you end up with is; time in your favorite South American country, time in Spain and then the time you wanted in your destination country.

You spent less to go to 3 countries than you would have spent to fly direct to Europe from America.

It’s a great tip that works really well.

Like I said earlier though, you have to have the extra time. If you’re just flying off to Europe for a few days then this may not be the way to go for you.

However, if you have the time or are a full time traveler then this could be a fantastic option for you.

Hi, I’m Patrick

If we haven’t been introduced yet, then Hello! Glad to make your acquaintance. My name is Patrick Shelley. My family (my wife and daughter) and I travel quite a bit and we would like to welcome you to

As a matter of fact, we are positioning things now so that within a year we will be able to go traveling full time for 18 months.

I look forward to helping you to live your travel dreams any way I can.

Have a great life. Because as far as we know for sure we don’t get two of them.