Tips for Family Vacation Planning, Part 4: Playing it Safe

Photo By Dennis Wong

Welcome to the final part of our vacation planning series. In case you missed the first three parts, I’ve provided the links to those posts for your convenience.

It’s almost time to take that long awaited trip, so let’s make sure you don’t forget some very important safety precautions you should take to ensure a safe and uneventful trip. (By uneventful, of course, I mean without the bad stuff.)

Before You Leave

  • Have Your Car Checked – If you are taking a road trip, be sure to have your car serviced and be sure to check the air in your tires, including the spare. After all, breaking down beside the road was not in the vacation plans.
  • Tell a Neighbor – Be sure to let a neighbor know you will be out of town so they can keep an eye out for anything suspicious or out of place at your house.
  • Have Mail/Newspaper Picked Up – Either have a trusted friend or neighbor pick up your mail for you each day, or have the post office hold your mail for you. You don’t want mail, such as credit card statements, bank account statements and other personal documents, sitting in your mailbox for an extended period of time.
  • Unplug Electronics – You never know when a lighting storm may develop while you are away, and you don’t want to come back home only to find that your electronics are fried because of a lightening strike.
  • Leave a Light On – Leave a small inside light on that can be seen from the front of your home. This gives the appearance that someone may be inside, possibly deterring anyone considering breaking into your home.

Here is my Vacation Planning: Before Leaving checklist for making sure the above things are done before embarking on a trip. It  also includes a few other things I didn’t mentioned in this post.

Before Leaving

(I keep all my worksheets and checklists in a folder to take with me on the trip for reference.)

During Your Vacation

  • Stashing Cash – Be sure to divide your cash between yourself and your spouse. Then each of you should divide your portion and stash each portion in different places. For example, you may put half in your purse and half in your pants pocket. This way if you lose part of your cash for whatever reason, you still have some stashed away.
  • Hide Valuables – Don’t leave valuables, or even a small amount of money, in plain site in your car. People who are desperate will break into your car if they see only the smallest thing that interests them.
  • Take Valuables Out of Your Room – Never leave valuables in your hotel room. Just hiding items in drawers in the room will not deter someone who is looking to take your stuff. They know where to look. Also if you leave your computer in the room, they may be able to gain personal information about you off the computer without you even knowing.
  • Don’t Leave the Key Card – There is some debate over what types of information is recorded on the key card you receive for your hotel room. Some say that credit card, address and other personal information may be compromised if you turn in your key card at the hotel desk during check-out. For this reason, it is best to just keep the card, take it home and shred it. This is what I do, and no one has ever asked me for it when I’ve checked out.
  • Ask about the Town – Ask the hotel clerk if there are any areas of town that should be avoided. If you’re not familiar with the town, you could wind up in a questionable area if you’re not careful.

These are just a few safety tips I feel make for a more secure family trip. I am sure you probably have a few more that I missed, but I hope I’ve provided you with some extra security for your next big vacation.

Wow! We have finally come to an end in the vacation planning series. I don’t know about you, but I’m ready to go on a big one! Hope your next trip is a happy, fun-filled and safe one!!

Please feel free to comment or make any suggestions as to how you plan your family trips.

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Posted on May 2nd, 2009 in Kids and Family | 2 Comments
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  • Abbie says:

    I loved this series and the downloads! For an organizer this ordered information is like a scoop of chocolate ice-cream on a hot sunny day. 🙂

    I also leave a copy of my passport and itnerary with someone I trust when I vacation abroad. You never know what will happen and what US consolate will need a fax of your particulars!

    Thanks so much for this series!

    Abbie’s last blog post..Ever Procrastinate?

    • Amanda says:

      I’m so glad you enjoyed the series. Leaving a copy of your passport and itinerary with someone is an excellent idea also. Thanks for adding that tip.

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