Here at A-Z Home Watch Solutions, we work with all sorts of folks, from snowbirds who call the Northeast home most of the year to those who travel the globe every chance they can get. For those of you with overseas plans for your next getaway, here are some important ways to protect yourself.
A good place to start is the U.S. Department of State’s website. You’ll find a traveler’s checklist, specific information on your destination and a host of other resources.
Consider enrolling in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) before you go. STEP is a federal program designed to keep Americans safe abroad. Once registered, you’ll receive travel warnings and alerts for a particular country. Enrolling in this program also will help the government provide you with assistance in an emergency.
Visit websites and blogs that cover travel topics and read up on your destination. Doing so will give you more confidence and a better understanding of the specific safety issues you might face.
For example, here’s one common scam that targets overseas travelers: As you approach a tourist attraction, a scammer pretending to be an employee may ask you for a fee. A similar scam targets tourists who are unfamiliar with the appearance and denomination of local currency. Taxi-fare scams are popular ways to fleece tourists in certain locations. It pays to spend an hour or two reading up on local customs and familiarizing yourself with local currency before you depart the country.
Think about how you will protect your valuables on your trip. If you lose your passport, it could take up to six weeks to have another one delivered to you.
Before you go, it’s always a good idea to provide a friend or family member with your itinerary. Take the time to secure your home while you are away and don’t advertise your absence. Stop your newspaper subscription temporarily and have a trusted neighbor keep an eye out for packages left on your doorstep. Or, better yet, get in touch with A-Z here http://a-zhomewatch.com and we’ll handle it all for you! Bon voyage!