Protect Your Computer When Travelling

Bringing a laptop along on vacations can be incredibly helpful, but can cause headaches if not properly safeguarded

Credit: Flickr / Visma Finland

Make sure your laptop comes back from your travels as nice as it was before you left

Keep these easy tips in mind when travelling with your laptop

Travelling with a laptop is not just for businesspeople anymore. Taking a computer on vacation is a great way to stay entertained on a flight, and is often the most inexpensive way stay connected to loved ones during your trip.

Computers are pricey investments with valuable information that you don’t want to compromise, especially in another country. Here a few ways you can prevent that from happening.

Update Your Software

Update your operating system and software before you go and don’t update your software when you’re logged into a hotel’s wireless Internet, which could allow cybercriminals to install malware that monitors everything you do on your computer – including intercepting your passwords.

Also, make sure your computer has antivirus software installed. While this doesn’t guarantee you won’t get a virus, it goes a long way toward protecting your computer.

Back up Your Data

You may also want to back up your data on a hard drive before you leave home, just in case something does happen to your computer while on vacation.

When using wireless, make sure the network is encrypted with WPA2. A password is needed before you can access it, so ask the front desk to confirm.

Keep Your Computer Locked

It’s common sense, but keep your computer locked up. If the hotel room has a safe, keep your computer in it. If you plan on carrying your computer with you in the car, keep it locked in the trunk.

Be careful when going through security. Make sure you go through the metal detector at the same time as your trays and personal items. Wait for all of your items to come out before putting your shoes back on or packing up your personal items. There have been reports of laptops getting swiped at security in airports.

Converters and Adapters

You may want to buy an electrical converter and adapter. If you’re travelling overseas, you’ll need to consider international differences in voltage, and then deal with the different sizes and shapes of the plugs. Check the label or owner’s manual on your computer to be sure.

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, 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 for more information.