Soon, thousands of people will head to warm locations like Florida, Arizona, and Texas for a few months to escape the winter weather where they are from.
It’s important for snowbirds to be aware of their surroundings while traveling to and from their destination, especially if they are taking a road trip—driving through various cities carries the risk of a car issue, which can leave them stranded in an unfamiliar city.
If you’re a snowbird, Krav Maga Worldwide has put together this list of personal safety tips to keep in mind.
Inform family and friends of travel details – It is important to inform your family and friends of your travel details so that someone knows where you are and can easily call for help if something seems suspicious. Let them know where you will be staying and how they can reach you.
If you are driving to your destination, make sure to also inform them of any place you spend the night along your route.
Double-check your travel necessities – Make sure you have passports, boarding passes, IDs, and any other travel necessities you may need, and make sure you have an emergency kit handy, especially if you are driving.
A portable phone charger, first aid items, blankets, food, water, and flashlight are all good items to stash in your kit. It also is a good idea to take your car to a mechanic to make sure there are no issues before you hit the road.
Always keep an arm and a hand free – Many people travel with multiple bags, purses, laptop cases, and other paraphernalia. But, if your arms and hands are loaded up with bags, you have no means of defending yourself from an attacker.
Luggage that can stack together securely and be pulled by one handle is a safer choice than wearing and carrying numerous bags on your person.
Follow this rule not only while traveling, but also once you get to your destination and are exploring the area. The fewer items you have on you, the better.
Stay together – Even though it can be frustrating to travel everywhere with someone else, stick to the buddy system. Even for a quick trip to the grocery store, have a travel companion come with you. You can never be too cautious, especially in areas you aren’t familiar with.
Park in well-lit areas and only visit populated places – Avoid parking in spots next to vans, trucks with camper shells, or cars with tinted windows. You want to keep your car and yourself as visible to as many people as possible. Also avoid parking next to tall shrubs or plants that could block views of your vehicle.
If you are stopping for gas, a bathroom break, food, or just to stretch your legs, make sure to only do so in populated areas. If you can, try to schedule your pit stops beforehand so you know you are in a safe area instead of just having to get to the nearest gas station.
Krav Maga Worldwide develops, promotes, and implements self-defense and fitness programs, trains and certifies instructors, and licenses more than 150 authorized training centers across the globe, as well as more than 800 law enforcement agencies and military units. www.kravmaga.com