Travel by Night
Travelling to unfamiliar destinations can be fraught with dangers but this is the price we pay when we want to take a look at a different world to our own. Some countries have higher crime rates than others, while others are low in crime but may be unsafe to stay in due to political unrest.
However safe or dangerous a country may appear, travelling always becomes riskier after nightfall, and it is worth reading up on fellow travellers’ advice to avoid becoming a crime statistic.
Any Time Travel
No matter what time of day you plan to travel, being aware of the risks ahead will allow you to make alternative plans if necessary. Look at the security situation and local restrictions and customs within the country you will be travelling in and avoid any unsafe areas. Make sure you know how to contact the local police and your embassy in every country you plan to visit and take heed of Foreign Office warnings.
Other precautions to take for travelling at any time of the day include making copies of your personal ID like your passport, driver’s licence, and any identity cards, as well as flight tickets and emergency contact information. Keep one set with you and leave another set with a friend or relative for safekeeping. Pre-pay large expenditures like hotel bills and make sure you have easy access to emergency funds. Most importantly, make sure you take out travel insurance, to cover any losses of valuables and baggage and to provide cover for any medical bills.
Staying Safe at Night
Reduce the risks by observing a few simple rules:
- Be aware of your surroundings and avoid quiet unlit streets.
- Avoid walking alone in cities and only use registered taxi services and approved public transport.
- Avoid wearing expensive or designer clothing or jewellery and other obvious displays of wealth. Do not use your mobile phone in public and keep expensive cameras and laptops or iPhones hidden in your luggage.
- Keep low denomination notes in your pocket and keep the rest of your cash hidden in a money belt. Also keep your bank and credit cards hidden away safely.
- Avoid travelling in taxis alone where possible and never hire an unregistered taxi, even if it is cheap. Also, avoid hailing taxis on the street in high-risk areas. If you have to travel on your own, sit behind the driver, where you can see him but he can’t see you.
- Take a torch with you on your travels and always keep it by your bed at night.
- Never put your luggage down and leave it, no matter how quiet an area may seem. Moreover, if you are staying in a busy hostel at night, consider taking a padlock and chain with you and fixing it to your bed.
Taking a few simple precautions could make your journey a risk-free adventure.