JTFSecurity Group Inc. is a globally active leader in security planning.
While we have plenty of recommendations when traveling internationally, such as the ones listed below, we feel that more often than not, “attitude” is the element that is mis-characterized and goes unaddressed.
And by attitude, we don’t mean “situational awareness“- which granted is key to remaining safe- so yes- avoid burying your head in your device, or have your expensive AirPods in your ears while listening to loud music (granted, some situations benefit from having earbuds in your ears, without music, therefore allowing you to ignore subversive attempts from rogue elements trying to make contact with you).
The attitude we are alluding to refers to that of the entitled “gringo”. The loud, obnoxious and disrespectful tourist who acts like a prick, looks like a prick, and is, in all likeliness a prick. Especially after a few drinks.
He or she treats locals with condescension, feels like their dollar, rubble, dinar or euro is a pass for disrespect. They typically imbibe more than they should and act like anywhere they go is their Disneyland.
The reality, is that those who want to commit crime will find triple bonuses in targeting these “touristo bastarde” elements. It is no longer about hitting you up for your cash, AirPods or jewelry. It becomes a primal response- an emotional gratification in the face of perceived disparity-seemingly caused by more affluent people.
Avoid being that trashy couple - don’t dress to impress. Think local. But don’t over do it, either. Don’t wear fancy jewelry- don’t put on too much make up. Choose your apparels with care- especially if you go out of “green zones”- the typical all inclusive tourist traps. Keep your cash in different places- not all bundled together in a wallet or pouch.
So be humble. Do as locals do. Be kind. Be respectful. Be quiet. Don’t flaunt. Don’t be a prick. Be aware.
And….if follow the below advice- you should be fine.
- Always be aware of your surroundings and trust your instincts.
- Keep your valuables, including passport and money, in a safe and secure place.
- Make copies of important documents and leave one with a friend or family member at home.
- Research the area you will be visiting and familiarize yourself with local customs and laws.
- Use hotel safes to store valuables and avoid wearing expensive jewelry.
- Be cautious when accepting drinks from strangers and never leave your drink unattended.
- Avoid walking alone at night in unfamiliar areas.
- Let someone know your itinerary and check in with them regularly.
- Have a plan for emergency situations and know the location of the nearest embassy or consulate.
- Avoid posting your travel plans on social media until you have returned home.