10 Travel Safety Tips for Women Business Travelers

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Don’t lose your situational awareness: a key travel safety tip

For women business travelers, being safe is all about being prepared and aware. Here are 10 travel safety tips.

With Duty of Care front of mind for meeting planners, following are 10 travel safety tips for women on the road, courtesy of insurer AIG.

Try to avoid booking arrivals for late at night in order to avoid dangerous situations and businesses being closed. Instead, try to book arrival times in the afternoon.

Check your smartphone for the latest local news and alerts as soon as you arrive just in case an incident occurred while you did not have service. For example, a colleague was en route to New York City when a bombing attack happened in Times Square and she was able to avoid the area.

Avoid wearing fancy and expensive jewelry, watches, purses, shoes or other accessories.

Never look lost.

Use the term “We” a lot when making small talk if you are traveling alone.

Keep your ears clear. Situational awareness is not possible if you are listening to music or a podcast.

Avoid direct eye contact with men….that doesn’t mean look down. Look confident and in control, but don’t make direct eye contact.

If you are uncomfortable or have a gut feeling about not entering an elevator or stairwell because of someone else in there that gives you a bad vibe hang back and then go in when it is clear or if there is a group of people. On the flip side, if you are alone and someone enters the elevator or stairwell that gives you a bad vibe get off at the next floor or exit door.

Don’t keep all your credit cards, identification and cash in one place. We learned this after a colleague lost everything; she was unable to travel without her ID, had no money or credit cards and was also unable to obtain an emergency wire transfer since she did not have an ID. Instead, keep a decoy wallet in your purse with a small amount of cash and expired credit cards.  Wear a hidden money belt with your “real” wallet contents. Make copies of your passport ID page to assist in filing a report and getting a replacement if your passport is lost or stolen. Leave one copy with a trusted contact at home and carry one with you.

If you are approached by an armed robber, do not resist under any circumstances.

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Barbara Scofidio is Editor of Prevue and heads up the Visionary Summits, our exclusive conference series targeting senior-level meeting and incentive planners. In her 30 years in the industry, she has become known for her passion around greening meetings, growing awareness of human trafficking and promoting CSR activities as part of business events. She is currently a member of SITE's Women IN Leadership committee and the media liaison for FICP's Education Committee. She was the first member of the media ever to be invited to sit on a committee by GBTA, where she spent three years on the Groups and Meetings Committee. She has also been an active member of SITE for 30 years, chairing its Crystal Awards committee and acting as a judge. Before joining Prevue in 2014, she served as Editor of Corporate Meetings & Incentives (MeetingsNet) for more than 20 years. She has a BA in Literature/Rhetoric from Binghamton University. Barbara is based outside Boston, in Groton, Mass.