Don’t be a Victim of Vacation!
When it comes to vacations, we always ensure our homes are secure before leaving. We lock our doors, close our windows, set our alarms, and make sure the garage door completely shuts as we’re pulling out of the driveway. House is secure. What happens once we’re on the road, though? How can we ensure our valuables and we are safe once we arrive to our destination? Hotels can be a relaxing and enjoyable experience, but they can also pose a safety concern. There are several tips to follow throughout your hotel stay to help protect you from being a victim on vacation.
Research before Reservations
Before you ever book your hotel, do some research on the surrounding area. What type of community is around your destination? How are the crime rates for the area? Is it isolated or near other businesses? Determine where you will have to park and the walk you will have to take before entering the facility. If you need anything during your stay, will the hotel be able to provide it, or will you have to walk through uncertain neighborhoods to get it? If travelling abroad, consider any terrorist threats and whether or not that country welcomes American tourists. Knowing what you’re getting into will help you be better prepared for your stay or help you know if you should reconsider and relocate.
Safety during Stay
Upon checking into your hotel, ask the receptionist to not announce your room number. You don’t want other visitors in the lobby seeing you and what you have with you and knowing exactly which room you will be in. Do not request a first or second floor room or one near the stairs, as those are much easier to break into. Although, keep in mind that in case of a fire, the higher levels are more difficult to escape from or be reached by fire engine ladders. Ask for phone numbers to call for security or emergencies. Check in any valuables to the hotel safe (don’t forget a receipt of what you’ve turned in). Keep hidden any valuables you need to use in your room or take them with you when you leave. Always locate stairs and the emergency exits in case of a fire. Never leave your door or windows unlocked and use the deadbolts or chains while in your room. Keeping the “Do Not Disturb” sign on your door, even when you are not there, will help deter thefts. You can always make special arrangements with housekeeping if you still need their services while you are gone.
If someone knocks on your door, never open it right away. Look through the peephole, ask why they are there, and only open the door if you know the person. Even if they say they are with the hotel, call the front desk and confirm their identity and reason for being at your room. If you order any type of delivery service, ask them to meet you in the lobby or leave the delivery item at the front desk. Never give out your room number or room telephone number. When outside of your hotel and speaking with strangers, do not mention where you are staying or your name. It is not difficult for someone to track down your room number if they know your name. If someone volunteers to help you take your luggage up to your room, politely refuse, and ask for an escort instead by an employee of the hotel.
Vacations are a much-needed escape from our busy lives, but they can also make us a potential target for crime if we are not careful. Doing thorough research ahead of time and following simple safety precautions can help to ensure you have a memorable and relaxing vacation. If you would like more information on travel safety or keeping your home secure while you are away, contact Watch Guard today!