Thanksgiving and Christmas are the busiest travel times of the year. From flight delays to traffic jams, you can be prepared for any emergency. Take the stress out of your holiday travel plans with a few simple safety precautions in advance.
- Prepare your car for the trip and the weather you will be travelling to if it happens to be a colder climate. Make sure that the oil is changed, your fluids are topped off and that your tires are at the correct air pressure for the journey. If you are travelling to an area of the country where the temperature will be below freezing, you will need to be sure that you have anti-freeze and proper tires to safely navigate in ice and snow.
- If you don’t already have a 48-hour emergency bag in your car, now is a great time to get one put together. In the interest of being concise, we’ll refer you to read Decisive Items Vital to Auto Safety for a list of all the items that you should be carrying in your car to stay safe in case you were to be stranded or stuck in a huge holiday traffic jam. Most of these items are already in your home so gather them together in a backpack and put them in your trunk in case you need them. At the very least, you should carry a comfortable pair of weatherproof walking shoes, an extra blanket, a battery back-up for your cell phone and form of self-defense protection in your car at all times.
Keep wrapped presents and valuables out of sight. This goes for in your car while travelling as well as in the home that you left empty. Before you lock up and leave to visit mom, do a quick look over of your home and make sure that nothing valuable can be seen from your windows if a burglar were to peer inside your home. If you’ve got gifts under the Christmas tree, tuck them into the hall closet or under the bed. Tidy up and put any jewelry on your nightstand in drawers. As the old saying goes, “Don’t dangle a carrot in front of the rabbit unless you want him to take it.”
Arrive early to the airport. Plan to leave your home even earlier than you normally would to avoid being stressed out at the airport. Traffic will be heavier. Parking will be harder to find and further out. Baggage check will take longer. The TSA security line will take longer. You get the point here. Everything will take longer and require more patience when you’re travelling by air around peak holidays. Get to the gate early, relax and people watch. You’re on vacation!
- Consider purchasing travel insurance if you have booked airline or hotel reservations. Epic weather on either end of your trip can leave you with hotel reservations that may not be used or airline tickets that may need to be changed. We traveled to Asheville, NC once for a vacation in December. Being from the South, we don’t automatically think of how snowfall will affect our plans because it is so rare. Although we were able to get to Asheville fine, the weather turned to severe snow storms and predictions that the entire city would be crippled until Tuesday. We had to be back to work on Monday so we ended up leaving two days early and lost over $500 for two nights of unused [and uninsured] hotel reservations. For the nominal fee involved, I will be purchasing reservation insurance on any future trips to areas that are known for heavy snowfall.
Get your neighbors on board with your travel schedule. Be sure to have your neighbor’s phone number in case of an emergency and ask them to keep an eye on your home while you are away. Ask them to collect any packages you are expecting to be delivered so they are not left sitting on your porch while you are gone. If your neighbors are really nice, you can ask them to move your car in the driveway a few times while you are gone so it appears that someone is still in your home.
- Use technology to your safety advantage. Monitor your security system remotely. Set your house lights to turn on/off at different times. Use apps like Waze to check your route for any accidents or traffic jams. Use your airline’s app to do preflight check-in. Any way that you can use technology to put your security plans on “auto-pilot” adds an additional layer of safety as well as one less thing that you have to worry about while you are gone.
Applying just a few simple precautionary safety measures can not only keep you and your valuables safe while travelling but greatly decrease your stress level in the process. The staff at Defense Divas® wants to wish each and every one of our customers a safe, blessed and magical holiday season.
Car Emergency Essentials Checklist
At the very least, these essential items should be in your car at all times. Whether you are going on a road trip or simply commute on a daily basis, these items will come in handy when your travel plans hit a hiccup.
- Spare tire
- Battery jump cables
- Phone battery charger/backup power
- Self-defense protection (stun gun, pepper spray or other)
- Weatherproof and comfortable walking shoes
- Extra blanket
- Umbrella and/or rain proof jacket
- Appropriate amount of cash in small bills to pay for something in an emergency
- Bottled water and a few protein bars
- Any required daily medications
Give the gift of safety this holiday season. Defense Divas® carries a diva-worthy selection of self-defense products for women including Bulletproof Clothing & Accessories, Stun Guns, Tasers, Pepper Sprays, Concealed Carry Purses, and Campus Safety products.
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