Don’t Lose it While Traveling

Dear Fellow Survivalist;

It’s a bit hard to believe, but summer is just around the corner. Kids will be out of school and families will be on vacation. I remember those days, even though I don’t have to worry about my kids and their school schedules anymore. Now, my wife and I can travel whenever we want, so we choose to do most of our traveling off-season.

While summertime might be travel season for most of us, it’s something else for the world’s criminal element. Sumer is their busy season, as they flock to vacation destinations around the world. Pickpockets, stick-up artists and general thieves see summer vacation season as a chance to make up for the slower seasons, taking advantage of people who are too busy enjoying themselves to even think about security. By the time most of them think of it, it’s too late… they’re already victims.

There’s nothing to say that you can’t have a good time on vacation and keep an eye on your family’s security at the same time. We don’t need to “check out” on security measures, just because we’re on vacation. By now, most of those measures should be pretty much automatic anyway and if they’re not, there’s still time to establish those habits before taking off.

Carrying on Vacation

Before leaving home to go anywhere, make sure you check what the carry laws are where you are going and anyplace in-between your home and your destination. You might not be able to carry everywhere and you need to know that ahead of time. Don’t take the risk of carrying in states that don’t allow it; some of them are looking for an excuse to lock people like you and I up, just to show us off as trophies in court.

If you can’t carry your gun, what can you carry? States have laws about knives as well; but even a relatively small knife can be rather effective, if wielded properly. If nothing else, get yourself a tactical pen to carry, so that you have something to defend yourself with or start carrying a walking stick. It may not be much, but it’s better than nothing.

Situational Awareness

Situational awareness is the single best thing you can do to prevent yourself from becoming a victim. Not only are you more likely to see anyone who is a potential threat, but you’re more likely to be seen looking around. They won’t want to bother you, when there are so many other targets available. The last thing that any criminal wants is witnesses that can identify them.

Maintaining a condition yellow really isn’t all that hard, once you get used to it. Not only that, but it will help you to see things about your destination spot that others miss. You’ll actually be looking around, rather than looking down and you never know what you’ll see.

Take Care of Valuables

Taking valuables along on vacation is always risky; you’re better off leaving them at home. But then, what good is it having those valuables if you don’t ever use them? Vacation is a time when we all want to use cameras and camcorders, as well as our phones and other things.

Valuables on your body are better protected than those which are left in your hotel room. That is, unless your hotel room has a built-in safe, where you get to set the combination. In that case, leaving things in your hotel room can be a good idea. But then, we’re back to wanting to use those items while on your trip.

Always use a neck strap with cameras, camcorders and purses. If possible, carry the item with the strap across your body. Don’t just count on the strap though; keep a hand on the camera or bag. Some pickpockets can slit that strap and be gone, running down the street before you know what happened.

If you’re the handy type, it can help to run a thin stainless-steel cable down through those straps, securing it well at both ends. That thin cable can be enough to stop them from cutting the strap, foiling their plans and leaving you in possession of your property. I’d much rather lose a camera strap than the hole camera; its’ much cheaper to replace.

Your Wallet

A couple of years ago I switched to one of those minimalist wallets that are available today. It is no bigger than the size of a credit card and is able to hold a dozen cards. Even so, when I’m traveling, I don’t carry all my cards. I carry identification and the one or two cards that I expect to use, along with my concealed carry license, my concealed carry insurance card and my health insurance card. That’s it. That way, if I lose it, I don’t lose everything. The minimalist wallet makes it easy to keep that wallet in my front pocket, where it’s a lot harder to steal.

I tend to carry a fair amount of cash with me while traveling. I’ve been in enough situations where the power went out and everyone only had plastic money. So, I make sure that I have enough to deal with emergencies. But I don’t have that money all in one place. It’s usually split amongst two or three different hidden places on my body and if possible, in a money belt. That’s an inconvenience, but I’m overweight enough that it’s virtually invisible.

Taking the right precautions will help ensure that your vacation really is an enjoyable time, even if there are others who want to make it something else. It’s really just like carrying every day, keeping your powder dry and keeping your survival gear close at hand.

Dr. Rich

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