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Excited about the upcoming vacation abroad? To start your travel experience right it’s important to find a balance between taking all you need and still be able to carry your luggage around. Before starting to pack consider these 5 tips on getting ready for a trip.
The long awaited holiday or an urgent business trip abroad usually starts with an airport. Traveling can be quite exhausting and stressful, especially if very little time spent planning it. Being late, getting lost, forgetting passport at home are the most common troubles travelers go through every day.
There are a number of useful tips which can help you make the trip smooth and hassle free.
Before Leaving for Airport
1. TICKET: If you bought your ticket online, make sure you print out your booking or boarding pass to be able to present it at the check-in. Some airlines don’t require a print-out, but it is better to have some proof of your booking on hands as technology as great as it is sometimes can fail, and this just might ruin your trip (i.e. system can’t find your booking as if you never bought a ticket).
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Tout is any person who solicits a customer in an importune, typically aggressive or bold manner. An example would be a person who is always to be found in heavily touristed areas, who presents himself as a guide (particularly towards those who do not speak the local language) but operates on behalf of local bars, restaurants, or hotels, being paid to direct tourists towards certain establishments.
*Be cautious going to places recommended by touts as you make decision based entirely on what the tout says, but reality is rarely what they promised it would be and unfortunately not on a better side.
When visiting most popular areas you might come across touts claiming to be tour guides. If you happen to sign up with one of them, they would take you to places you don’t want to go, bring you over to various uncles’ rug shops, souvenir, jewellery shops and alike where you will be pressured into buying things. *Your so called ‘guide’ has an agreement with the shop owner and receives a commission from anything you buy.
In worst cases scenario touts may take your money for their ‘services’ and abandon you. Sometimes they also might try to sell you weed / hashish, which should be avoided at all costs as it may lead to criminal prosecution in countries where drugs are illegal.
Car Break-in is a forced or unauthorised entry into a car, typically to steal something.
Use the following tips to avoid car break-in:
- When you are renting a car make sure it has alarm system installed and functioning.
- When renting a car check if the audio receiver has a detachable stereo face and make sure to take it with you every time you leave the car.
- Keep your valuables out of sight. Don’t leave your purse, iPhone or laptop on the seat. If you must leave them in the car, hide the items in the glove compartment.
- Remember to lock the car even in cases when you plan to leave it for a minute only.
- When you need to park the car stick to secured garages or at least find a parking place in crowded public location.
The usual scenario of this con is that someone stops you and asks for directions. Then, in a little while, a couple of other guys show up claiming to be police officers, waving fake badges. They will ask if you were getting drugs from the other guy and demand to see your passport and wallet for verification. When you are busy trying to convince them that your passport is valid, and you didn’t do anything wrong, one of the police officers sneaks out the money from your wallet.
When you are approached by suspicious persons claiming to be police – tell ”the officers” you are happy to show all the necessary documents BUT at the police station. Swindlers will most probably tell you that you are free to go.
Some criminals might try to add a substance, such as drugs or alcohol to your drinks or food.
The drug may affect the way you act, or the way you behave with other people.
The most common reasons for drink/food spiking are:
- to be malicious
- to carry out a sexual assault or rape
- to carry out a theft
- for amusement
The following steps may help prevent someone from spiking your drink:
- Never leave your drink unattended.
- Don’t accept a drink from someone you don’t know.
- Keep an eye on your friends’ drinks.
- Stay away from situations that you don’t feel comfortable with.
- Let someone know where you are and what time you expected to be back, especially if you’re going on a date with someone you don’t know.
- Don’t give out too much of personal information to someone you’ve just met.
- It’s important to remember that if you’ve already been drinking, it may make you less aware of any danger.
This con usually takes place when you arrive at the airport/or train station at a major tourist destination. There you might stumble on a very helpful local explaining that there’s a riot/holiday/official visit at the place you want to go (hotel, market etc) and it is closed. *Sometimes, taxi drivers, rikshas or caleche drivers (e.g. in Egypt) are in cahoots with these helpful locals and will purposely drop you off to be received by them.
The local then offers to take you to a lesser known but much more beautiful site, to a nicer shop or better hotel. The ultimate goal of this con is to lead you to a place where the conman has a commission deal with the owner/supervisor. At the same time, your essential destination is in fact open for business. Even on the very rare occasions when they are telling the truth, they may not be as helpful as they seem, so it would be better to pursue your own backup plan. Just say ‘Thanks, but no, thanks” and walk away until they stop following you.
- Calèche – is a horse drawn carriage.