Africa

8 Christmas Family Vacation Tips: How to Stay Safe

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Christmas is here. You and your family will likely be travelling somewhere for the Christmas holidays. If there are even slight security concerns, what measures should you and your family keep in mind?

1. Stay low-key

Cheerful Kids at Christmas: Family Vacation Tips are Good for this Sets, this Period. Image Credit:

Cheerful Kids at Christmas: Family Vacation Tips are Good for this Sets, this Period. Image Credit: Muriel Heard Collier

Try not to look tense. Blend in as much as you can without faking it. It might not be the best time to look obviously new in town with the whole Ankara family “and-co” thing.

2. Move with a guide where possible

Christmas Family Travel Tips

In case you are headed for an unfamiliar territory, get a guide. Image Credit: William Murphy.

If using a paper map instead of a map on your phone, do so discretely. Preferably check your paper maps from home before leaving. Ask beforehand about the places you will be going to. Get to know what’s happening in the area. Ask about trends, where to avoid and the likes.

3. Travel light

Use small bags to carry stuff you need, rather than wielding attention-drawing bags. Remember, if you have kids with you already – that’s heavy enough. Travelling light makes easy for you to respond to emergencies quickly.


4. Know the numbers

Christmas Family Travel Tips

Even Michelle Obama always checks up on the kids. Image Credit: Pete Souza.

Most tourist cities have an emergency number to call when in danger. Make sure you and your children know this number for the city you are visiting. Good to also know where the emergency exit for where you are lodged is, as well as who to contact when you have a need. This includes the embassy.

5. Eyes on the kids

Kidnappers target tourists a lot. Teach your kids simple instructions on how to respond to strangers who might approach them. Kids like to explore but keep your eyes on them within a close range. If you will leave them behind indoors, weigh the babysitting option offered by some hotels.


6. Prepare the Kids

Christmas Family Travel Tips

An Impression of African Children on Display at the Nike Art Gallery. Image Credit: Ian Cochraine.

Rehearse with your kids what to do if you got separated. Really. Do it. Show them how to identify potentially helpful people who could assist them with reuniting with you. Make them understand why they’re likely safer approaching a mommy with children than a male stranger. Place a card in your kids’ pockets that has your phone number typed or written in it.

7. Take a picture

Christmas Family Travel Tips

A good shot of the Christmas light will do. Image Credit: Roman Boed.

Using your phone, take a picture of each family member with the clothes they’re wearing before leaving home each day. This can especially be helpful when trying to describe a missing child to passers-by in a large mall.

8. Documents please

Christmas Family Travel Tips

Christmas Light Adorns the Entrance of the Government House During the 2010 Calabar Carnival.

Travel with the relevant document on you, or scan them into your phone. You never know when you might be asked. Though help might eventually arrive, but it’s not entirely a great idea to spend a night of your vacation with the kids in a New York police station.

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