Security When Traveling

Posted by   Steve Thibeault
01/07/2015
0
Security When Travelling

Like many people, I enjoy traveling but I don’t. I like getting away for a while, visiting new places and such. But, I don’t like being away from home and I for darn sure don’t like exposing myself to possible theft and such when staying in hotels. Many don’t put much thought into it, but you should really think about security when traveling.

Fortunately, there are a few things you can do to stack the odds in your favor when staying at a hotel. First, whenever possible, do some homework ahead of time and choose a hotel that is part of a well-known chain or, at the least, has several great reviews.

While they might be a little pricier than the smaller outfits, you can usually get a decent rate using one or another of the popular travel websites. Sticking with well-known hotels can go a long way toward avoiding potential trouble.

Staying Safe when Traveling

Once you get to your room, keep the door closed and locked at all times. Engage the deadbolt as well as the little lever deal toward the top of the door. Obviously, you can't use these locks when you leave the room but they’ll help protect you from intruders when you're inside.

Never open the door unless you know for certain who is on the other side. If you called for room service or something, the person knocking on the door should have on a name tag. If you don’t know who the person is or why they’d be knocking on the door, leave it locked and call the front desk.

Alarms Help Your Security When Traveling

Door Wedge AlarmThere are a few different types of alarms you can bring with you as well, if you’d like. One of the simplest consists of a device you place on the floor up against the door. If the door is opened, it slides across the alarm, activating it.

There are also alarms that can be hung from the door knob and are activated by motion.

Personally, if I'm staying multiple nights at a hotel, I avoid having housekeeping come in and make the beds and such. I'm fine making my own bed and I typically have plenty of towels already.

The fewer the number of people accessing my room, the better. While that door hanger informing housekeeping to keep moving won’t prevent them from coming inside when you’re not there, it can’t hurt.

Valuables

Try to keep all valuables out of sight. Don’t lay out all of your jewelry on the dresser top, for example. Personally, I rarely ever use dresser drawers and such in a hotel room.

Doing so just increases the chances I’m going to forget and leave something behind. When I’m traveling, I truly live out of my suitcase.

Everything gets stored in it, with the exception of dirty laundry. All of that goes into a plastic bag that will get packed just before I leave.

Anytime you leave your room, make sure you have your key card with you, of course. Don’t flash it around when you’re out and about. What I do is keep it in my wallet, which lessens the chance I’m going to accidentally drop it somewhere in my travels.

If you do find you’ve lost your card, notify the hotel immediately so they can reprogram the system, rendering that card useless.

Using just a little common sense along with some basic security tactics will ensure you have a great vacation.

Hotel Security

Having just returned from a weekend trip that involved staying in one of the absolute worst hotels I’ve ever experienced, I thought today we’d talk a bit about security when staying at hotels.

Security is just as important when traveling as it is at home, perhaps even more so!

My first recommendation is to use a credit card, rather than a debit card, for hotel room costs. The reason for this is you may find, as I did, charges on the bill you want to dispute. During the time it takes to resolve the issues, the funds may be tied up, potentially for weeks.

If you used a debit card that is linked to your checking or savings account, it could end up throwing off the entire budget for the month.

However, by using a credit card, you can leverage the power of Chase, Citibank, or whichever issuing bank it is against the hotel. In my case, we’re talking over $500 in false charges.

Imagine if someone reached into your checking account and grabbed $500. Could you still pay all your bills in a timely manner while the situation gets sorted out?

As for being secure in your hotel room, you might want to consider investing in a door brace. This is a handy little device that will help prevent someone from barging in on you.

Remember, hotel front desk employees are only human and mistakes can and will be made from time to time. A glitch in their computer system might allow them to give your room to someone else, issuing them a valid key card for your door.

By using a door brace when you’re in the room, even with the key card they won’t be able to get in. Same goes for those aggressive housekeepers who just won’t take no for an answer.

door-brace-in-use

Also, be careful of people trying to enter the hotel through side doors late at night. If you’re coming back from dinner, don’t allow others to piggyback as you slide your card to unlock an exterior door.

If they truly did forget their key, they’ll have to go to the front desk to get a new one anyway.

If they aren’t guests and instead are looking to gain access to the room corridors for less-than-honest reasons, you don’t want to be the one who let them in, do you?

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