Guest Post by Jennifer Carrigan:
When you are traveling, you may be exhausted and looking for respite. Many people let their guards down when they are traveling for leisure, as they seek relaxation and release from life’s worries. However, no matter where you are, it is important to keep basic safety in mind. Whether you have booked your room ahead of time, or you just stop in for the night, there are some important things to consider when staying in a hotel.
The Most Basic
Lock your door, even when you are in your hotel room (not all doors lock automatically). It seems like common sense, but you would be surprised how many travelers leave their doors open (or unlocked), even if only for a few minutes as they run down to buy a bottle of water. While most hotels nowadays have automatic locking systems, some people still wedge shoes or books between the door and frame to prop the door open. And older hotels may not have this type of secure luxury.
Many hotels have minimal security, and there is no simply no reason to not take advantage of the door’s lock. Keeping your door closed and locked is the first step to keeping your room, your body, and all of your belongings private.
Guard Your Information
Be cautious when giving away information about yourself. Do not talk to other hotel guests about your possessions, or your travel plans. If you tell all of your hot tub friends that you are going to propose to your fiancé and have the ring locked away in your hotel room, and then also share your itinerary for the next day, don’t be surprised if you go back to your room that night to find your room broken into and your belongings stolen. Just because other people are staying in your hotel from your country of origin or using the same facilities, it does not mean that they are trustworthy or that they need to know your personal information. Be smart and be vague about references to when you will be out of your room, or what types of luggage you are toting.
Make sure that you keep any expensive valuables out of sight and locked in a hotel safe (if one is available). Most business class hotels offer safes if you are carrying pricey items or if you buy an expensive gift while traveling. Depending on the economic status of most workers in the area you are visiting, you may also want to keep your cameras, electronics, and business paperwork out of sight or inside your luggage when you are out of the room. Why tempt people by displaying it? However, not all hotels offer this option. It might be a better idea if you leave most of your valuables at home. Do you really need that diamond necklace or antique ivory cufflinks during the week of your vacation? Probably not.
Keep in mind that hotels are public places. Multiple people have the key to your room. Use your common sense and reason to make sure that you are not making yourself flashy or vulnerable. Trust your instincts. Lock your doors, and keep your most valuable and essential items, like your wallet and passport, on your person any time you leave your room.
Jennifer Carrigan is a frequent business and leisure traveler. To get her to her hotel safely, she finds a taxi from http://www.stitataxi.com/.
image via Witty Sparks