With the recent travel alerts for potential terrorist attacks in Europe, we wanted to make sure you get to enjoy your trip but stay safe too. While we may have featured some of these safety tips from our Survival Training experts at Stiletto Spy School, it never hurts to have a refresher and pass on the advice to your friends and loved ones. Stay safe!
Before you Leave:
— Create a file with a copy of everything you usually carry in your wallet or purse (e.g. driver’s license, credit cards, passport, etc.) If your purse or wallet is stolen, you will know exactly what was lost.
— Never carry your Social Security card.
— Always keep a backup of contacts and other important information stored in your cell phone. You may also want to keep this information in a safe password-protected file online. This way, if you are traveling, you can access the information remotely and immediately.
— As a secondary precaution, make a copy of your itinerary and your ID/Passport and leave it with a family member or close friend.
At the Airport:
— Check in and get through security as quickly as possible. The safest part of the airport is past TSA, not in the main lobby area.
— Always request an aisle seat on the side of the plane that allows your strongest arm to be toward the aisle. If something unforeseen happens on the plane, you will have the best advantage possible.
When you Land:
— Use authorized cab services at the airport.
— Never share a cab with strangers and never accept the first cab that is offered to you, particularly if you are traveling alone. In fact, depending on the city, hour and whether you are traveling alone, you may find it best to let the second cab go as well and take the third cab. Why? It makes it less likely that your driver will have planned anything nefarious.
— Before you get into the cab, try to notice something identifying about the cab (a number, cab company, color and make of the vehicle, etc.)
— Once inside, engage the driver in conversation and ask his name.
— Once you are on your way, pretend to (or actually) telephone someone local and speak loud enough for the driver to hear you. Confirm that you are in a cab and on your way and that you should be there within ____ minutes.
— Tell them the cab description and the driver’s name and to keep an eye out for the car. Repeat that you look forward to seeing them in a few minutes.
— If the driver had any intention of doing something shady, this will put him on notice that you are likely not the best person to mess with.
At the Hotel:
— At check in, if you are traveling alone, make sure that they do not say your room number out loud as they hand you the room keys. It is policy in many hotels to follow this rule, but if they do not, don’t be shy about asking for a supervisor and requesting a room change…
—Request for a room that is on the 4th floor or lower and near the emergency exits.
— Whenever in your room, always lock the door and engage the secondary chain or latch bolt. Front desks are famous for inadvertently giving two different guests the same room. You do not want to be surprised by an unexpected visitor. These types of room mix-ups can also happen on purpose. Either scenario can be avoided by securing the door with more than the automatic lock.
— Never leave valuables in your hotel room. Valuables include jewelry, cell phones, laptops , cameras, etc.. Even the nicest hotels can have theft problems. A common scam is for a well dressed person to convince a maid that they locked themselves out and have the maid open the door – to your room.
— Try to keep as little in your purse as possible. Do not keep your cash, ID or credit card in your purse. If your purse is stolen, you will not be able to access cash immediately. If you don’t want to wear a money belt, here is a brilliant way to keep these items in your bra.
—While you’re more familiar with ’911′, keep in mind that ’112′ is the European Union’s emergency number while other countries in Asia use ’999′ instead. Here’s a quick reference guide just in case.
EXCLUSIVE — Top 10 Things for Urban Survival:
Here are the Top 10 Things for Urban Survival you should have in your handbag/backpack that will help you deal with any emergency disaster situation. Remember to keep items small and portable and while you won’t be able to bring a small knife onboard a plane, you are still permitted to check it in with your luggage.
1. Small folding knife that can be carried concealed
2. Small, but intense flashlight (100+ lumens) with crenelated bezel
3. Para cord
4. $100 cash in twenty’s carried somewhere besides your wallet
5. Cell phone with small “jump start charger”
6. Lighter or other fire making device (e.g. firesteel)
7. Medication you require (3 days supply) plus benadryl, iodine tablets, and ibuprofen.
8. Space blanket
9. Credit card
10. Card with next of kin information/contact points.
These are just some of the tools and tips you can expect to learn on a mission with Stiletto Spy School. All of our expert instructors come from incredible backgrounds and are the top professionals in their fields such as Awareness Training, Breath Control, Hand to Hand Combat, Poker Skills, Precision Shooting, etc. Find out more at our website.