Top 5 Travel Security Tips


Keep a Low Profile

You don't need to announce that you are a tourist to anyone within earshot. In fact, making your presence known can be a dangerous proposition in countries where kidnappings and terrorist attacks are common.

To avoid becoming a target, follow these tips:

  • Exercise caution around crowded, touristy places, such as tourist attractions, marketplaces and packed subways or train stations. Also stay away from desolate, remote areas or alleys where you'll be alone.
  • Don't draw attention to yourself. Wearing a fanny pack and a camera around your neck are like flashing billboards that you're a tourist. Dressing expensively or ostentatiously will make you look like an easy target for thieves.
  • Look as though you belong. Figure out where you're going ahead of time. Walking around with a big map will quickly identify that you're not a local. If you do need directions, ask a police officer or go into a hotel or restaurant.
  • Watch out for anyone who seems to be staring at or following you. Report any suspicious activity to local law enforcement officials, or to the local U.S. embassy or consulate.
  • Know where to go if you get into trouble, whether that's the nearest U.S. embassy, a police station or hotel.

Related Articles

More Great Links


  • CDC. "What You Need to Know About Vaccinations and Travel: A Checklist."
  • CDC. "Your Survival Guide to Safe and Healthy Travel."
  • Sejvar, et al. "Leptospirosis in 'Eco-Challenge' Athletes, Malaysian Borneo, 2000. CDC.
  • U.S. Department of State. "A Safe Tip Abroad."
  • U.S. Department of State. "Tips for Traveling Abroad."
  • WHO. "International Travel and Health."


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