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Seniors and Travel Safety

Published: Feb 1, 2010

Travel can be intimidating for anyone. Seniors can be especially vulnerable in some travel situations to thieves or identity theft. Here are a few ways seniors can travel safely.

Prevent identity theft by bringing only the ID and credit cards you will need. Leave anything with your Social Security number at home. Use prepaid or stored-value travel cards and keep the issuers’ phone numbers in a safe, accessible place. Keep your passport and other ID, credit cards and cash in a money belt worn under your clothing and carry an inexpensive decoy wallet.

Travelers should also plan leave expensive jewelry at home and dress in clothing that does not shout “tourist!”

It may also be a good idea to make copies of important documents, like passports and tickets. This will make it easier to replace them if they are lost or stolen. Give a copy of your passport to a friend or relative and carry one with you. Also keep a list of credit card and transportation contact numbers.

No matter where you lodge during your trip, never open your hotel door to strangers. Use the door viewer to see who is outside, and do not trust anyone claiming to be a hotel employee if you are not expecting one. Call the front desk to check. Keep the door to your room locked at all times, and turn the deadbolt and fasten the security chain when you are inside. It is always best to use the main entrance when leaving your hotel after dark.

Many seniors also prefer group travel for ease of transportation and safety, but do check to make sure the itinerary is at the right pace for you.

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