Worried about safety on your trip to Italy? A lot of keeping safe is simply following your gut; if you find yourself in a seedy area or uncomfortable situation, get outta there. While using common sense is critical, when traveling to another country there are a few more aspects to consider. Read on for some train travel safety tips to be prepared:
Before you Board the Train
Scan all of your important travel documents such as your passport, ID cards, insurance cards, and rail pass and e-mail them to yourself. These are crucial to have if any of your document are lost or stolen. The old method of making and keeping copies is flawed — you’re in trouble if you lose the hard copies, but digital records are forever.
Boarding the Train in Italy
Board the train as early as possible and try to find a compartment with other backpackers, families, or business professionals. If you’re alone and female, look for a compartment with other women in it. And be prepared to change compartments if you feel uncomfortable.
Staying Safe on the Train in Italy
Don’t leave any of your belongings unattended. Keep alert; you will take in more, remember more, and minimize your risk of being robbed. Don’t keep all of your money and credit cards on you in the same pocket; keep at least one card and some cash in a different place, preferably not on you. To avoid being pickpocketed, don’t keep your wallet in your back pocket, keep it in the front, especially in one that can be zipped or buttoned up, or even better, in an inside jacket pocket. For extra security, you can also wear a money belt.
Watch out for groups of children or adults creating a commotion meant to distract tourists for easy pick pocketing and don’t let anyone hold you by the hand or wrist — they may try to whip your watch or wallet off you.
As for sleeping on a train, it’s best to use your daypack as your pillow and wear your passport, cash and rail pass on you. And if the door to your cabin has a lock, make sure to lock it before you go to sleep.
Leaving the Train
This goes for wherever you are while traveling — always check your car or surroundings for any valuables left behind before leaving the train to make sure you haven’t forgotten anything.
Photo credit: Garrett