Travellers are easy targets for thieves… and hotels can attract criminals' attention. Here's how to protect yourself

Follow these simple rules to keep you - and your property - safe at a hotel.

  • Leave your valuables at home. If you can't, don't stash them in the dresser drawers, use the in-room safe, or better yet, the safe-deposit boxes at the front desk - they're protected from the public and often have cameras watching them.
  • Keep your room keys safe. If you lose a key, tell the front desk agent that you need a different key, not a duplicate. A new key will reprogram the lock, making it impossible for anyone to use the lost key to gain entrance to your room
  • Close your door. Hotel managers often find hotel room doors not pulled shut or that have been deliberately propped open. Make it a habit to use all the locks: the deadbolt, the chain - the whole lot.
  • Use valet parking. Besides protecting your personal safety, valet service can protect your car and belongings. Hotels usually accept no responsibility for any theft or damage to your car if it's in a parking lot. You're better covered in valet parking.
  • Use your common sense. Don't drink too much, don’t tell anyone your room number and don't invite strangers to your room.

If You Do Get Robbed

If something does happen to you or your property, notify a security officer and a manager immediately. They'll ask you to file a detailed report on the incident. 

You can also buy baggage and personal effects insurance to protect against loss or theft. In most insurance packages it covers for up to $1000 per person. But, you can buy it separately for up to $2,000 worth of protection per person.


Founder and president of Travel Best Bets, Claire Newell has appeared on The Today Show, Fox & Friends, Good Day New York, ABC Morning News – Chicago, Martha Stewart Living Radio, and CNN Radio, and is the official travel consultant for Global TV. She has been a spokesperson for Disney’s www.family.com, and featured in promotions for the Vancouver International Airport and the Canadian Tourism Commission. Newell has authored or been featured in articles for Success, Professional Woman, Today’s Parent, Readers Digest and for various newspapers. She is the best selling author of Travel Best Bests – An Insider’s Guide to Taking Your Best Trips, Ever and has just finished her second book.
 
This wife and mother of two has also launched two lines of luggage & travel accessories. Visit www.clairenewell.com for more information.