Safety When Travelling

Image Credit: Tim Gouw via Unsplash

Travel editor Colleen McShane shares her three important tips for staying safe when travelling in 2024.

The measures we take to keep our physical and mental health safe means just as much as the perfect hyper-romanticised Spotify playlist for a three hour flight to Rome or the carefully curated beauty and self-care bag that will keep us looking good for our vacation. Here are three forgotten, but most important, ways to keep yourself safe on your new travels in 2024.

Research, research, research. 

There is nothing worse than jumping blindly into unknown surroundings and environments without researching the country you are travelling to. For example, when on a hike in Eastern Australia it is important that you can distinguish the deadly funnel-web spider from any other insect. Similarly, when you’re swimming in the beautiful Croatian waters you must be aware and cautious of the mauve stinger jellyfish. Although for most locations outside of Europe you will need an array of travel vaccines, without research or knowledge of the country you are travelling to could put you at risk of jeopardising your physical health. On a lighter note, being aware of the typical climate of the season you may be travelling in could spare you an impromptu burst of seasonal depression in a foreign country. There is nothing worse than when you book a nature holiday to rural Ireland in the spring and are greeted with unforgiving April showers!

The People Around You.

One of the most important things, in my opinion, for a travel enthusiast to take into consideration is the people they surround themselves with on their travels. Personally, I feel the most safe with my parents or best friend who I trust to keep me centred, sane, and safe when embarking on a new adventure in a foreign, unknown country. They also keep things interesting and fun with a blight of boredom (bickering is expected)! However, if you are someone who prefers solo travelling, many tourist destinations are filled with community hostels to connect with other solo travellers and build new social relationships to ensure that you are never truly alone. 

Emergency Money 

Staying hydrated and energised is essential while travelling, especially in trips that require a lot of walking. Yet setbacks, becoming stranded, starving and dehydrated, are frequent, and these occurrences become a traveller’s worst nightmare if you realise you are out of money. With this in mind, emergency money is a must to keep handy in extreme cases of stolen goods or declined cards. Emergency money can be used for a variety of things - from food and water to boost energy levels, taxi or bus fare back to your designated accommodation, or miscellaneous payphones for communication in case of separation from your travel buddies. A good place to keep your emergency money is in the back of your phone case - because if you’re like me your phone will always be glued to your hand. 

As travel etiquette is progressively overshadowed by social media trends and marketing, these three realistic reminders could be lifesavers for some, if not most, people embarking on adventures to new, unknown hotspot locations in 2024.