5 Tips For A Safe and Trouble Free European Trip
The excitement that comes with embarking on a European trip might be one of the greatest feelings in the world. Being given the opportunity to journey across Europe is definitely on the wish list of every avid traveler. It’s easy to get lost in the joy that comes with an impending European trip, and sometimes this joy causes travelers to forget about safety. These tips and tricks will help you have a safe and trouble-free Eurotrip.
Planning is the key to staying safe
Unfortunately, it is easy to leave your planning for the last minute, especially when you are excited about embarking on a trip through multiple European countries. As long as you make a mental note not to forgo proper planning on every Euro trip, you should be fine. Most travelers take appropriate planning for granted, simply because spontaneity can make a trip a bit more exciting every now and then.
However, when you desire spontaneity, it might really cramp your travel style but it can also put you at unnecessary risk. Taking the necessary precautions to keep your European trip safe and trouble free will essentially give you more time to take in the sights and immerse yourself in all the amazing locations you visit.
The planning stages help you figure out how to prioritize your travel belongings, get all your necessary travel documents in order, curate a list of emergency contacts, etc. Think of planning as the equivalent of changing your car’s oil to ensure it keeps running smoothly.
Travelers are usually at a disadvantage in new countries, and they are susceptible to the wiles of criminals and burglars who are more at home. Planning helps bring some of these dangers to light, and it gives you the chance to create safeguards that serve as safety buffers over the course of your European trip.
Since you will most likely be visiting multiple locations and countries, taking the time to map out your transportation routes will give your safety level a much-needed boost. (It also gives you a chance to incorporate some epic railway bridge sightings into your travel plans!)
There are different safety hazards that come with various forms of transportation, especially when you are in Europe. These hazards have nothing to do with the destination, but more to do with the fact that you will be navigating through new locations with varying rules, which places you at a slight disadvantage. When you map out your transportation routes ahead of time, you have a higher chance of staying safe and avoiding any confusion you might face along the way.
If you are taking in the sights of multiple European countries, a Eurail Global Pass is one of the best ways to get around. This helps travelers circumvent the costs of renting vehicles and having to deal with changing road laws in every country they visit. A Eurail Pass is even better for family travel. If you have others traveling with you, their safety should be your concern as well.
Be decisive when it comes to accommodations
As we all know, being a spontaneous traveler has its perks. However, there are times where this awesome trait might be a disadvantage. One of these times is when it comes to choosing accommodation. There are many factors that should be considered when choosing accommodation, but safety should be at the top of this list. For your European trip, you should be decisive and objective when it comes to choosing accommodation.
Most people are aware of the threats they might face while they are out and about. This is all well and good, but it often means they don’t focus on the safety of the items that can’t be carried everywhere. It helps to adopt a minimalist lifestyle as you go from country to country, but even then you can’t keep track of all your belongings at once.
Being decisive when it comes to your accommodation allows you to check the safety and security features of the hotel, hostel, or Airbnb rental you are using. This includes the basic security that is being afforded to your temporary residence, as well as the kind of additional security mechanisms that are in place.
Utilize all the safety tools you can
Travelers should take advantage of travel padlocks, portable door locks, personal safety alarms, and a host of other safety tools that allow them to manage their safety in a very efficient way. If you are looking for self-defense products, just be sure they are legal in all the countries you are visiting.
It is important to think of safety as a malleable element while you travel. This allows you to experiment and see what works for you, as you move between various European countries. Just be sure that your luggage itself is secured with some form of additional safety precaution. Even if you are not worried about the safety of your bags while on the train, you will be taking your bags all over the continent.
Passports, cash, and electronics are the items you need to take the most care of. But if you are renting a vehicle (even a scooter) at any point, keys can also be vulnerable. Using Eurail will lessen your need for additional forms of transportation, but you might have the keys to your car which is back home in the long-term parking lot. Protect your keys so you don’t end up needing an auto locksmith. Theft resistant bags and luggage locks are some of the safety tools many overlook when they are packing for a Eurail vacation.
Don’t be afraid to learn a few new words
Trust me when I say that learning a few basic phrases can really help you survive in Europe, and it will help you get around safely. A big part of safety involves being able to communicate with some degree of accuracy. It might not sound like much, but being able to ask for directions, board the right train between countries, and even hold a basic conversation all go a long way to increase the level of safety that you are being afforded.
If you are using a Eurail Pass, there is a chance you will be traveling through a host of different countries including Italy, Hungary, and Croatia. The pass can help you safely navigate about 28 countries, but since it’s tough to become fluent in 28 different languages, it helps to learn a few basic phrases.
Knowing basic phrases makes it easier for you to signal for help, and it also boosts your situational awareness by giving you a bit more insight into the things that are going on around you. For instance, in an emergency situation where you might have to evacuate, it would help to understand basic words so you can follow instructions faster.
Overall, going on a Eurail trip comes with a lot of planning in advance, but I assure you that in the end it will all be worth it!