It’s that time of year – the time of year when a lot of people trade snow for sand, and a miserable climate for something that leans more in the direction of vitamin D.

Being safe and secure on vacation has always been a concern for people. Regardless of destination – security for yourself or your things always comes up. Maybe you’re less concerned about yourself but you’re traveling with a larger then usual amount of cash or valuables. Or maybe you don’t have a lot in those respects but are hitting up some less then ideal locales.

Lets start with personal security. In most cases, the average person on the average vacation will stick to the tourist areas and areas that are well populated and known to be on the safer side. Lets face it – every city has its rough parts, and some are worse then others. For the most part, tourists (and sometimes even locals), stay away from these areas. Worst case – avoid them after dark or if there are known issues or threats. Make yourself aware – follow the news and current events of the places you’re visiting. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Hotel security staff and concierge are usually very knowledgeable and are there to help you make your way around safely.

In some areas (and yes – they do exist in some countries), armed security may also be an option, or even a requirement. This may seem like overkill and you may feel the entire time you’re there that it was unnecessary – but did it feel like that because nothing happened? Maybe if something did happen you wouldn’t necessarily feel the same way.

Its entirely likely that the vast majority wouldn’t vacation in a place that requires a higher level of protection. However there are a lot of thrill seekers and people that just want to see and appreciate the world and this added bit of ‘comfort’ is something that they can live with. After all – its not like this type of security generally walks around with their weapons constantly drawn. They’re typically discreet and a lot of the times, dress accordingly so they don’t stick out. Blending in with their surroundings is part of their security make up and a requirement of most jobs.

This being said – if you do require armed protection, keep in mind they’ve been hired to do a job. I would not recommend using your security as a personal tour guide at the same time. A tour guide wants you to enjoy the sights and will answer all of your questions and let you know all of the important facts. Security is there to be constantly assessing the surroundings. Anything could happen at any time. It is there job to be aware of everything going on around you. Distractions will not help or make their job easier. This goes for security anywhere, regardless the situation. They are there to protect. Let them do their jobs.

Moving on to your valuables and personal belongings. Lets assume they’ve arrived with you in the first place. There are a number of fantastic items to stash away cash and important paperwork. There is the classic pouch that is typically nude coloured and you wear under your shirt (high fashion for sure). Next would be the ever popular fanny pack. These are not necessarily concealable but less likely to be grabbed as its worn and attached around your waist.

A purse would be a lot more likely to be snatched off your shoulder – and a lot easier as well. Both of these items do come with limitations. There are more high tech gadgets for example small personal safes that attach themselves to your beach chair or umbrella. These require a passcode to open and are perfect for stashing a few bucks for the beach bar and some ID but lock to a preferably stationary object so that you can splash around in the ocean or pool without leaving someone behind to play security.

Almost all hotels have an in room safe where most items can be kept without worry. Perfect for passports, travel documents, smaller electronic devices and jewelry so that the things you’re not necessarily using on a day to day basis. Failing that – some hotels also have front desk security where the same service is provided just not in your room.

Being on vacation doesn’t mean being on vacation from being safe and secure.

This should still be as important as ever when you’re away from home.

Insurance only covers so much. Being aware and prepared are all part and parcel to being safe. Being aware and only carrying what is necessary is common sense.

Guest Blogger Rayna Davies

Rayna Davies is a graduate and practitioner of Business Management.  She has developed an expertise in blogging, covering subjects like travel, world events and security.  Having grown up with a father who has developed an expertise in Physical Security and Executive Protection in the RCMP and two major corporations, she has personally observed and experienced many security details.  These experiences have included personally meeting HM Queen Elizabeth, Prime Minister Jean Chretien and many celebrities.  She presently assists Sentinel Security in Executive Protection workshops and guest blogging and also assists Gloprosec Preventative Services in Intelligence gathering and Business Administration.  Her passions include World travel, having visited every continent.  She currently is on maternity leave and providing daily close protection for a baby and a toddler and spending time with her husband who is a Police Officer.