Travelling is fun as well as great learning experience. Do all that you can to make this experience safe and hassle-free.

It is said that those who haven’t seen the world have only seen one chapter of life. No wonder, people are travelling to places and leaving no chance to pack their bags and head to a new destinations. Travelling to new and unfamiliar destination can be fun, but can bring troubles of its own kinds. Tourists often fall prey to perpetrators because they do not prepare before embarking on a trip. The good thing then is to know things that can keep that trouble at bay.

1. Never list your home address on the luggage tag. If on business, put the company’s address on the tag. If visiting friends you can list their address. Use covered luggage tags as well.
2. Stay with your luggage until the luggage is checked. If you must put your bag down, keep one foot on the handle.
3. Carry important papers with you; never check anything that you simply cannot afford to lose. Photocopy your passport, driver’s License and credit cards.
4. Carry a small flashlight. You never know when you’ll suddenly be ‘in the dark’ and find yourself in unfamiliar surroundings. At night, keep your flashlight by your bed.
5. Make sure that your prescription medicines are filled properly and labelled accurately. In some countries certain prescription medicines are forbidden.
6. Never wear anything that projects affluence. No gold chains, expensive watches and rings, luggage, or other paraphernalia, should be in easy view.
7. Women particularly should never accept a drink from a stranger. Keep an eye on your drink at all times.
8. Vary your schedule; try not to come and go at the same time every day.
9. Only stay in a hotel that uses cards to open room doors and make sure your room has a peephole and a deadbolt lock. Secure the chain and secure the door by pushing a rubber stop under it.
10. Stay in a room near a stairwell. Never take the elevator if a fire or smoke is detected. Always stay in a hotel where the doors enter the hallway and not directly from the outside.
11. If possible travel with only one or two credit cards.
12. Do not use unmarked taxi cabs.
13. Pay the driver upon arriving at your destination and while you are still sitting in the vehicle.
14. Sit behind the driver so you can see him, but he cannot see you.
15. Be aware of ‘Staged’ car accidents meant to catch you off card.
16. Bring along a basic first aid kit with bandages, iodine, mosquito repellent, sunscreen, diarrhoea medicine etc.
17. Never flash your money in public. Exchange funds with reputable and recognised exchangers only.
18.  Park only in well-lit and well-travelled areas.
19. Do not wear name tags in public.
20. If you must rent a car; rent only from a reputable company. Any operating problems that occur could signal sabotage.
21. Back into your parking spaces to facilitate a quick exit.
22. If your cell phone does not work outside of the country, consider renting one that does for the duration of trip.
23. If detained for whatever reason by an official, ask for identification. If in doubt tell them that you want to see his superior, keep your emotions in check.
24. If travelling with children, bring along an updated photograph of each child in the event that you become separated from them.
25. Write your child’s name and your hotel number on each card; include a close friends or relative’s contact information on the card. Give a card to each child which they will carry with them as long as you are away.
26. Discuss with your family what they would do in event of an emergency while away from home, e.g. whom to call, how to contact emergency personnel etc.
27.  Do not discuss travel plans,  your room number or any other personal information in public within earshot of strangers.
28. Familiarise yourself with train and bus schedules before travelling. Have an alternate plan in place in the event your plans change.
29. Do not flash your passport in public. Discreetly show important documents to officials only.
30. Consider renting an escort if travelling in areas where  crime rate is high.
DON’T OVER PLAN:  Even the best laid plans can go awry; trains may be delayed, traffic may be bad and hotels may not look the way they did in the brochure. Booking through travel agent can lower some of the stress of organising a holiday, but the key lies in going with the flow. However, don’t leave everything to chance. For example, during peak travel periods, hotels fill up, flights are expensive and train availability is difficult. So make advance reservations.
DON’T GO THE ORDINARY WAY: Don’t go with a fixed list of things to see and do. Always be flexible and let the destination surprise you. Travel guide books and pre-packaged itinerary aside, Himalayas has a lot to offer in terms of the spontaneous, the magical and the bizarre. For instance, a local market will tell you more about a place, than popular sightseeing spots! Also, you needn’t always visit a destination during season time. Off season can give you more time in a place and also cheaper deals.
DON’T BE A MESSY TOURIST: Do not treat national parks and mountains like your private picnic spots. In a forest, avoid making noise, listening to loud music or throwing litter around. Garbage is major problem in Himalayas. So don’t be part of the problems; instead, find a trash can to dispose your waste. Look for places to stay that offer sustainable living and are always balance between luxury resorts and homestays.
DON’T ANNOY THE LOCALS: Taking photographs of locals without asking for their permission is considered rude in some cultures. For example, in Ladakh, the young lamas can get very irritated, if you take their pictures without their consent. Also familiarise yourself with the local customs; you may hurt people’s sensibilities, especially villagers, by your lack of knowledge.
DON’T CRAM IN TOO MUCH: Travelling can be a treat to the senses and therefore, it’s important to enjoy each place before you move on to another destination. Though it’s tempting to fit in a lot of places within a short span of time, it can be quite overwhelming. On a long vacation, try not to have too many consecutive travel days in your itinerary and spend at least 1-2 nights in any given city.
DON’T TAKE THINGS PERSONALLY: While travelling within the country, you will come across the unpredictable and the chaotic. Sometimes there will be traffic jams, delays or roadblocks for no conceivable reason. So, if things don’t go your way, learn to take it in your stride. For most travellers, India can be a great life lesson,
DON’T FORGET THE ALTITUDE: Don’t forget the altitude! For instance, if you’re travelling in Ladakh, don’t expect to start trekking on the first day of your holiday. Allow yourself plenty of time to get acclimatised, to avoid altitude sickness.
DON’T HIRE GUIDE WITHOUT ID: Don’t hire guides without checking their identity card first; anyone who has seen movie “Slumdog Millionaire” will know why!
DON’T WANDER  AROUND ALONE: Don’t wander around alone at night, especially if you are a woman.