Hitting the road for vacation can be an excellent way to decompress after a particularly difficult work assignment or to bond as a family. As you’re staying at hotels and motels during your travels, you will want to take a few precautions to keep you, your loved ones and your property safe.
According to research by Ball State University and Florida International University, crime rates are rising at hotels and inns as tough economic conditions have led to security cutbacks and as desperate individuals turn to crime. Studies show that theft is the most common crime committed at hotels, with violent crimes being far less common. The majority of thefts that happen at motels and inns happen outside guest’s rooms, with only about 38 percent occurring in the room. Most thefts take place during the afternoon hours.
When traveling, there are a few commonsense precautions vacationers can take to prevent them from becoming victims of crime.
For starters, travelers should read reviews of the hotels and motels they intend to stay at. Many reviews will make note of whether crime is a problem in the facility’s vicinity. If many reviews state that theft or other crimes are a problem, you may want to consider other accommodations.
To prevent theft or other criminal activity, be sure to keep a close watch over room keys or keycards. Keeping track of your keys will help you avoid getting locked out of your room, and will also help you avoid giving thieves access to your room with a misplaced key.
When checking in for the night at an inn or motel, be sure to lock your vehicle. Unlocked vehicles are prime targets for theft and vandalism by criminals. Also be sure that any luggage or items not secured in your room are either in your trunk or placed somewhere out of sight in the vehicle.
If your hotel offers a room safe, make use of it. Locking up your money, medication and other possessions in a room safe will give you additional protection from thieves who may make unauthorized entry into your room. It also prevents theft by facility employees
When traveling, having good situational awareness is important to keeping yourself and your family safe. Be aware of your surroundings, and avoid situations and places that seem sketchy. By keeping an eye out, you can identify and avoid many potential hazards.
You can also enhance your personal safety by requesting front desk workers to keep your room number and presence at the inn or hotel you are staying at private. This can be helpful in preventing stalkers or other people with ill intent from finding you.
It should also go without saying that you should be sure to lock your room door every time you leave the room and when you turn in for the evening.
Hotels and motels can help ensure their facilities are safe for visitors by contracting with a professional locksmith to do routine locksmith work, such as re-keying locks and installing card-key locks. Professional Locksmith in Bellevue can provide these services and consult on other safety matters such as alarm systems and room safes.