A few simple precautions can take the hassle out of holiday hiccups.
Take scans of your passport, tickets and visas. Email them to someone you trust. If you get into trouble, at least your vital documents are only as far away as the nearest Internet café.
If you’re accessing your bank from an internet café, use a browser that has an ‘incognito’ mode (if you’re using Google Chrome go to the spanner top right and choose to open an incognito tab, Internet Explorer has a similar In Private Browsing mode) so that nothing you do on the Internet café’s computer is stored for criminals to find after you leave.
Don’t be a stranger! Let your parents, friends or Facebook buddies know where you are and where you’re going next. If something happens to you, someone will know to start looking.
When you’re a long way from home, it’s best to split your money up into different forms, in case you are robbed, or your credit card fails. Carry some local cash, some traveller’s cheques and a debit card. Only carry a little of your cash in your wallet – put the rest in a money belt under your clothes.
The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s Smart Traveller website has up-to-the-minute information to advise travellers about the risks you may encounter around the globe. Check the site before you book a holiday because terrorist or disease threats can change the status of a country very quickly.
A surprising number of travellers go overseas without so much as a band aid in their bags, which can leave them scrambling to find a pharmacy after something as innocuous as a grazed knee caused by a cobblestoned street. Include disinfectant for hands – the kind that replaces soap – because many tummy bugs can be avoided by proper hand washing and tap water isn’t always the best solution.