Even for the seasoned traveller, the last thing you want to worry about is theft and being robbed when you're away from home. If you've researched your destination, read our tips on how to prevent theft, and the travel scams to be wary of and still want to know about the extra precautions you can take to stop thieves from taking your possessions, then read our great guide on the best anti-theft gadgets you can use whilst you're travelling below:
According to the majority of products we've seen on the market, the best place to store cash and valuables seems to be... your underwear! Aside from the fact that the phrase 'anti-theft underwear' sounds like something from a James Bond film, these wearable gadgets will actually keep your things concealed and safe. The Bra Stash is a small flat pouch, about the size of a large iPhone or passport to keep your valuables close to you at all times. By attaching it to your bra, and positioned just under your arm, your possessions remain concealed and don't bulge out. Similarly, Eagle Creek have a silk undercover bra stash pouch but it doesn't attach to your bra or come in various laces and colours to match whichever underwear you wear most. Both are available from Amazon for less than £10. Amazon also sell pouch bras - bras with a security pouch built right in.
For some travellers, wearing a money belt isn't an option, especially as they tend to be uncomfortable as well as screaming 'I am a tourist, and I'm carrying some valuables around my waist!'. Luckily, you can now buy underwear which has pockets (useful for a multitude of reasons, not just for carrying important belongings whilst travelling). There are plenty of boy and girl short-type underwear with concealed zippered pockets which provide your valuables with the ultimate protection for when you're out and about. The pockets tend to be the exact right size you need for a passport which is also an ideal size for everything else. Both Amazon and theclevertravelcompanion.com sell 'smart-clothing' products for both men and women and hot and cold climates at less than £25 - ideal for the frequent traveller.
In a similar fashion (excuse the pun), companies like Scottevest are creating more and more innovative clothing options for travellers with fleeces, jackets, trench coats and fashionable jumpers with more than 15 concealed pockets for valuables inside. These types of products also make it a lot less awkward when trying to remember what pocket you left your passport in and not sticking your hand down you pants before security!
Seeing as your possessions tend to be the main target for most travel scams that happen whilst you're away, making sure your luggage is secure is one of the most important checks to make before you head off overseas. PacSafe is a company which provides travellers with secure suitcases, bags and packs to travel with eXomesh® anti-theft technology on the majority of their products. The strong, lightweight, flexible criss-cross metal is installed within the actual product, ensuring that thieves cannot slash your bags and steal the contents. In a similarly-tailored fashion, you can buy eXomesh® 'cages' to store your bag in.
Anti-theft bag straps are popular with travellers to large cities known for their higher crime rates, like Rio de Janiero. Whereas normal bag straps are made from leather, faux leather or material which is easy to slash with a sharp knife, these bag straps are made with metal inside, making it a lot harder for someone to take your things.
Suitcases and backpacks can also now come with anti-theft zippers. Known for being particularly flimsy in the hands of thieves, regular zippers aren't always reliable or secure. With anti-theft zippers, the zip itself is tamper proof with impenetrable teeth.
Your credit and debit cards
Whilst guarding your luggage is only one step of theft prevention, you also have to pay attention to your digital security. Radio frequency identification chips are now in credit cards, ID and passports (this is how we can pay for things wirelessly) but whilst this is a technological marvel, this can also be used by criminals to steal individual personal information. This makes these RFID blockers even smarter. You can get RFID blocking wallets from Amazon for about £20, and they help keep you, your identity and your card details secure. Look for aluminium wallets or cases which all help block the radio frequency waves.
You can take as many preventions against theft as you feel necessary for when you travel, but to be on the super-safe side in the event that those preventions fail, it's best to invest in some decent travel insurance. A travel insurance policy protects you, your belongings and helps you get back to normal from your 'disrupted' state as soon as possible.
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