Worst-Case Wednesday: Travel Strategies

Posted by Jessica Lopez

It’s summer, so if you’re lucky, you’re probably going on vacation. While this should be a time to relax, travel can involve all sorts of little stresses and snags, making summer vacation not much of a vacation at all.

Luckily, The Worst Case Scenario Survival Handbook: Travel has thought of everything. Here are a few of the best tips for trip this summer:

Bathroom Emergencies: If you need a bathroom in a hurry, head for the nearest large hotel. Most hotels have bathrooms on or near the lobby that are usually clean and well-kept.

Freshening up: Department stores are great places to freshen up or reapply makeup. Just head for the sample counters and you’ll find an array of lipstick, makeup, and perfume at your disposal.

Taxis: When getting out of a taxi, make sure you leave the door open while you are getting your bags out of the trunk; that way the taxi can’t drive off before you get your bags out.

Luggage Markings: Give each piece of your luggage a unique look—tie a bandana to a handle or purchase a colored luggage tag. Bags often look alike, and even though you may be able to tell one bag from another, not everyone else is as smart as you are.

Avoid Wrinkles: Use plastic dry-cleaning bags between fine garments to keep them from wrinkling. Pack smaller items in zip-lock bags to keep them wrinkle-free.

Create Space: If you run out of space, zip your suitcase and drop it a few times on the floor. This will compress items a bit and free up space.

Avoid Equipment-Specific Bags: If you are taking valuable electronic equipment with you (such as cameras, video recorders, or laptops), consider packing them in a diaper or baby bag instead of the fancy, easily identifiable cases designed for them. A diaper bag is much less likely to be stolen and has a lot of extra pockets for storage.

False Wallet: Prepare a “mugger’s wallet” that contains a small amount of money along with a photo ID (not your driver’s license or passport) and additional, but replaceable, cards, for bulk. Use this wallet for your daily small expenses, but be prepared to surrender it in an emergency. Carry the wallet in your front pocket, and place a rubber band around it. You will feel any attempt to remove it.