It is the time of year where those who can are getting away for a mid-winter vacation. HRM Partners in Policing offer these tips to help travelers avoid unnecessary complications abroad and keep their property protected.
If you plan on leaving the country, you’re going to need a passport. Even a trip to the United States now requires a passport. Make sure you obtain your passport before making any travel plans. For more information on how to apply for or renew a passport you can visit the Passport Canada website at http://www.ppt.gc.ca/index.aspx#tab9. If you already have your passport, it is a good idea to make photocopies of it before you travel. Keep one set with you in a secure location to be used in the event your original passport is lost or stolen, and leave another copy with a trusted relative or friend. When in transit, do not pack your passport in your checked luggage. Keep it on your person at all times.
Make sure you are aware of the currency used in the country you are travelling to. It is a good idea to visit your local bank and have your money converted to that currency before you travel. You may also want to consider purchasing traveler’s cheques, or perhaps a combination of traveler’s cheques and cash. Even if you plan on using credit cards, it is always a good idea to keep some local cash on you to be used in the event of an emergency. When in transit, do not leave your cash in your checked luggage. Keep it on you until you reach your destination, and even then, do not leave it in the room unless it is in a secure location (like a room safe).
Contact with friends and family:
Before you travel, make sure you have with you the contact information of a trusted friend or relative, and ensure they have a way of reaching you in the event of an emergency. Refrain from posting updates about your trip on social media websites until after you return.
Social media has increased in popularity and influence at a tremendous rate. It’s easy to see why. Social media is a fast and efficient way of sharing news and information, and can be a fun way of staying in touch with friends and family. “Unfortunately, thieves have become very adept at using the information posted on social media sites for their own criminal gains,” says Cpl. Scott MacRae, Media Relations Officer for Halifax District RCMP. “Vacation plans or photos posted on social media can provide criminals with all the information they need to plan a break and enter.” In some cases, unsuspecting social media users not only let criminals know they’re away from home, but they provide enough information to let thieves know where they live.
HRM Partners in Policing hope everyone fortunate enough to get away this winter has a fun and safe time when they’re gone, and they return to things the way they left them.