Travels

Have safe travels !

While travelling to new and unknown places, our first thoughts should be about safety. You should always check different pages such as Trip Advisor or Booking, and research other guest experiences. Use Google maps and street view to see what is around your hotel to become familiar with the surroundings.

For travellers, this is one of the most important ways to choose the right hotel. In this article I will focus on safety in hotels. Which for me means a safe room, safe food, safe items we travel with and safe area around the hotel’s property.

People usually assume that every hotel is safe, but is this always true ?

Some “unsafe” stories of my life…..

I often travel alone or (if I’m lucky enough) with my sister :), so salty is a very important aspect. When choosing a hotel I always think about the area that it will be located in. On my most recent trip to Washington, I was trying to find a hotel for my sister Ola and I that was located in a safe but not too expensive of an area. As Washington D.C. is a Capital city, they have a lot of embassies. That is why my first choice was to find a hotel around Embassy Row (an area with a lot of embassies). I felt that this would be a good choice and it really was. Every night was really quiet and a very nice area.

Another factor that should be considered when choosing a safe location when making a reservation, is the distance from public transportation. I don’t want to walk alone for a long time from a bus stop to my hotel. In Washington, I was very lucky cause everything I had planned was successful. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case a few years ago when I had made a reservation in Hong Kong. At that time, all I wanted was a cheap hotel where I would only sleep – and that was the worst travel nightmare. I had booked a room in a not so popular area at a cheap hotel called Chungking Mansions. This area is knows for having a lot of hostels and sketchy people. In the mornings when I was leaving, it was still ok as people were usually sleeping, but in the night when I was coming back to my room I was terrified, especially that I was only 20 years old and didn’t know much about Hong Kong. This city in general is very safe and I had no problem to travel around, but around my hotel I always felt scared (that time I was young and  terrified, but now I feel like it was an adventure for me). This experience taught me that I should always read guest comments and choose a hotel according to my travel companions (alone or with someone else). I need to say that those rooms are a really good deal for a lot of travellers, but I would definitely feel safer with someone else…. Wont recommend it to solo travelling ladies.

 

What about my stuff ? Should I use hotel safe?

I would say that – YES ALWAYS !!!  Hotels should make sure that no unknown people walk around corridors and hunting for guests that are trying to get into their rooms. Every hotel staff should have eyes around their heads and let others know about possible dangerous situations. Hotels should also invest every single small discrepancy from guest rooms if anything bad has happened. I think that most travellers trust safety boxes at hotels, and they usually leave their laptops and other expensive items there.

IMG_0062.jpgIf you have something very expensive like jewellery it is good to ask Front Desk staff about safety box at Reception if they have one. I wouldn’t recommend to travel with very expensive personal items unless it is necessary. Do not forget, hotels usually do not take responsibilities of any lost object so it is in your own decision to hide stuff in safety box or just leave them at home.

 

What about my food ?

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Every hotel is also obligated to serve their guest safe food. Usually hotel kitchen (in huge resorts) have a lot of people working there and before meal time those places are very busy. Sometimes what might happen is that something can contaminate food and get guests sick with less stronger stomachs. I see this situation in a lot of Big resorts where clinics are always busy with sick people after lunch or dinner. For hotels this should be a priority as they welcome people from all over the world for who in many situations food in new country can be very dangerous if they are not used to foreign food.

 

All the solo travelling ladies, put your hands up !

Another big topic is safety for women travelling alone for business or leisure. Today, there is a comparable number of travelling women to travelling men. A lot of hotels take special care of women who are checking-in alone. Staff always remember to make sure that their room is located close to elevator so she doesn’t need to walk all around corridors alone. Hotels also needs to make sure that the hotels surroundings are secured. ( a little tip for ladies travelling solo – even when you are not in your room, place a Do Not Disturb sign on your doors so for potentia theft is a sign that someone is in the room… Of course you might do this after Housekeeping finishes their job if you need it). While travelling alone or even with family, do not accept ground floor rooms (unless it is necessary because of your health condition or you have small kids).

What I personally like and always try to catch while checking-in, is if the Front Desk agent says my room number out loud… Personally I really don’t like it. You can always replace it by saying you room will be on the 1,2,3 or another floor and show on card holder the room number. If guest can’t see it just tell them but quietly so no one else can hear it. Just a little detail but makes me always think that this hotel really cares about guests safety

 

To conclude my post I would like to say that most of the time our safety depends only on ourselves – how we behave in foreign a country, if we go to bad areas or destroy rules of another country. So your safety depends only on you!

Have a safe trips as summer 2016 is almost here!

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Thank you for reading,

Kasia Walkow

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