Pearls of Prevention

Will this winter ever end? Yes, I know that I live in Wisconsin. Yes, I know Wisconsin has winters. However, this winter has seemed to drag on and on. I, and many of my family and friends, are looking at travel plans. You know the need to get out of Dodge for a while - something to look forward to while the ‘drearies’ of winter continue. I love to travel to new places, countries, and cultures. Whether you are traveling domestic or internationally, there are a few safety tips you should consider. 

Before you go:

  • Scan your important travel documents and e-mail them to yourself. The old-school way was to make photocopies, but those can be misplaced. This way, you can pull up the e-mail readily, if you would need them.
  • Write down your itinerary, flight numbers, hotel numbers, etc., and give them to someone who is not traveling with you. We usually give all the information to my parents and sister.
  • Traveling internationally? Check to see what vaccines are recommended for that region.
  • It is tempting to post on social media about your time away, but that is a great way for letting people know your home is vacant!


  • Pack light. Remember you have to carry what you pack. Place what you want to take on the bed, then cut that pile in half. 
  • Carry on. Place essentials in your carry-on, such as medications, glasses, and a change of clothing. 


  • Keep an eye on your baggage. Do not leave it unattended.
  • Keep a separate record of the contents of your carry-on. 

On the Road:

  • Make sure rental cars are in good condition prior to leaving. Keep the rental paperwork in the glove compartment, not on the seat or dash.
  • Place luggage in the trunk.
  • Drive with the doors locked.
  • Park in well-lit areas.


  • Have the clerk at the hotel write down your number so it is not overheard by others.
  • If you lose your key, insist on having a new keyed card.
  • Do not lay your key out in the open in public areas. It is easy for it to be stolen.
  • Always keep the doors locked. Do not open the door without verifying who the person is on the other side. Call the front desk if the person claims to be from the hotel.
  • Use the safe for any valuables you have with you. Even better, leave valuables at home

Out and about:

  • Keep your purse near you. Wallets should be in the front pocket. Even better, wear a money belt.
  • Do not display expensive items. Keep the camera in the case when not in use. Keep jewelry to a minimum.
  • Ask the front desk about the safety around the hotel and neighborhood, and what areas should be avoided.

I love to travel. There is so much out there to see, learn and enjoy, but you need to keep safety in mind. If you are planning an international trip, come visit our Traveler’s Clinic. Our next ‘big’ vacation is being planned for 2015. I am ready to pack now! Enjoy your vacation whether you are going to Munich, Hawaii or Brookfield.




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