Security expert Louis Perry shares his tips for having a fantastic trip, wherever your travels may take you
By Louis Perry
Whenever you vacation—regardless of the destination—remember to pack your commonsense.
Reports of violence in other parts of México have caused some travelers to rethink their plans, but Los Cabos remains a safe vacation spot. You can nevertheless be proactive about staying safe. Communication and research are imperative whenever a person is traveling abroad.
Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (https://step.state.gov/step/ ) to receive travel warnings and alerts. Research the destination and the attractions to be visited. Ask questions of hotel employees and representatives. Learn which times of day are best to be out and about. Be aware of currency exchange rates. Knowing the exchange rate will aid while making purchases so that a traveler does not get overcharged.
As a rule, travelers benefit from dressing down while on vacation. The less flashy a traveler looks, the less likely he or she is to catch a criminal’s attention. Dress to belong, not to stand out. Casual attire is always best. Think clothing items such as slacks, jeans, shorts, T-shirts, and tennis shoes.
Knowing directions prior to leaving your hotel is important. Do not hesitate to ask someone for directions if you don’t know where you are going; however, don’t just ask anyone. It is best to ask the concierge at a hotel or hotel security. They will be more than happy to point you in the right direction. Also, ask about the community and the path you’ll be taking to and from. This is to get an idea about the conditions of the environment.
Research methods of transportation around the region you’re visiting, in this case Los Cabos. If possible, do a little research about the company you will be using and find out whether it is safe and professional. A tourist doesn’t want to end up lost in the wrong part of town if by chance the driver does not know where he is going. To learn more about transportation in Los Cabos, you can visit www.loscabosguide.com /services/transportation.htm.
A traveler must always be alert while exploring new countries, especially if traveling alone. Be aware of the surroundings and try to travel in groups of two or three. Single targets make for easier targets.
To be safe rather than sorry, utilize the hotel safes to store excess cash and valuables. Carry only the cash you expect to spend while out that day or night. Also, try to carry only one credit or debit card. That way, in the case of loss or theft, not all financial outlets are lost. If your cards are stolen, know that Visa or MasterCard will cover any credit card purchases and are accepted pretty much everywhere. Keep remaining cash in the safe provided by the hotel along with jewelry and important documents. Should you choose to have your room cleaned, do not leave valuables out. Take advantage of the safe provided and put them away. When moving from hotel to transportation to destination and vice versa, you can ask for escorts, especially if there is a feeling that something is not right. Heed any suspicious feelings; personal judgment and intuition are often correct. When requested, hotels will always provide security escorts to and from transportation. In closing, fit in and try not to stand out too much. Los Cabos is a dream destination. Have fun, be alert, and be safe.
Louis Perry is president of Kadima Security Service, which provides personal protection as well as home and building security.