Travel Safety

Traveling abroad does present certain risks, however it's important to realize that risk abroad is very different from the armed robbery and drug-related crimes we hear about in the news. Physical assault is very rare when traveling, but opportunistic, non-violent theft is a concern and something that can be prevented. A traveler makes and inviting target, unless they are prepared and alert enough to avoid problem situations. Being prepared reduces your risk.

Throughout the CDTG, you can read about ways to stay safe while traveling and avoid the dangers of unsafe situations, whether you're taking the train, traveling alone or just staying healthy. But sometimes travelers find themselves in a situation that is quite unfamiliar, perhaps even scary in some sense. Other times, they don't even realize what has happened to them, such as in the case of pick pockets.

Although your physical health is worth more than any money or equipment you carry, most safety issues are not physical threats but rather ones that result in theft or loss of money and/or valuables. Here you will find some useful (and some common sense) advice to help you stay safe and avoid some of the common scams or circumstances that have been experienced by travelers in the past and continue to happen even today. It is important to be aware of these occurrences so that you are prepared if you find yourself in a potentially hazardous situation.

Safety Tips

Here you will find some useful (and some common sense) advice to help you stay safe and avoid some of the common scams or circumstances that have been experienced by travelers in the past and continue to happen even today. It is important to be aware of these occurrences so that you are prepared if you find yourself in a potentially hazardous situation.

Scams

It seems that each country you travel in has its own scam 'specialty', a favorite among the local thieves. It is true that some countries are free of scam artists and offer travelers nothing really to worry about. But other countries, like Egypt and Italy, have professional scam artists, people that make a living off of the unwary traveler. It is helpful to ask other travelers about popular local scams. We list some of the more common scams encountered by travelers.

Theft

Regardless of whether you are at home or on the road, theft is an unfortunate fact of life. By preventing the opportunity for a thief to prey on you, the risk is significantly reduced. Use some common sense and appear in control of what ever situation you are in: avoid looking lost or confused, pay attention to your surroundings and be discreet when using money or revealing your valuables.

Dealing with Touts

A tout is essentially someone, usually a man, hired to go out and recruit or bring in travelers to hostels or other sleeping arrangements. You might also find touts trying to convince you to come to 'their' stores, restaurants or market areas. They often hang out at bus and train stations, ferry docks and at some airports. While they can sometimes provide useful information, they are doing this for money, they get a commission wherever they take you and so you end up paying more money. When dealing with touts, your best bet is to ask many, many questions before agreeing to anything.