Going backpacking is one of the most enjoyable and memorable things that anybody could do, providing you with a life experience that no book or teacher could ever teach. During your round-the-world trip you will discover different cultures, food and landscapes that you could only dream off. It is the thought of such wonders that is naturally at the forefront of your mind when planning a holiday. However, while it is fun preparing for all of the exciting things that await, it is essential that you take the time to consider the safety aspects of backpacking.
While the majority of backpacking holiday adventures is trouble-free, it is important for you and your family to know that you are going to be safe when travelling abroad. And the first thing that every traveller should do is take out travel insurance.
Backpacker travel insurance
Travel insurance is an important part of any holiday plan and is especially vital if you are planning to be away from home for a significant period of time. According to a survey by MORI, one in five independent travellers go abroad without insurance and almost half of them get into some kind of trouble that could have been aided by travel insurance.
Falling ill (especially younger travellers), missing flights, getting hurt, being victim of crime, and becoming caught up in civil disturbance, were amongst the main reasons for people running into trouble abroad. Of course, the odds of any of these things happening to you during your trip are very much in your favour, but travel insurance provides the peace of mind that, should anything happen, you are covered.
There are many insurance companies, such as DUInsure , Bengo and Fogg that provide specialist policies designed for backpackers and are often tailored around your trip, covering the length of time that you are travelling and specific continents or worldwide.
Backpacker safety tips
While travel insurance should be the top priority, it also pays to know how to keep safe. Always make sure to plan ahead and learn as much as possible about your intended destination before you travel, such as current civil situations and laws. Foreign Office websites are a good resource for backpackers and will provide up-to-date information about the situation in different countries.
Also, make sure that you keep in regular touch with your family whenever possible, letting them know where you are and that you are safe.
Other essential safety tips include:
- don’t walk around alone at night – especially if you are drunk
- don’t carry a lot of money around – take only what you need for the day and leave the rest in a safety deposit box
- don’t have valuables on display – walking around with an expensive camera makes it clear that you are a tourist and a prime target for thieves.
A safe trip is a good trip. Make sure that you are well prepared, well researched, and armed with your common sense at all times, and your journey will be the best thing you ever do.