Issue 44 / March 2015
TRAVEL SAFETY TIPS YOU CAN’T AFFORD TO IGNORE
TREKKING IN NEPAL LOMPRAYAH CUSTOMER CARE
+66 (0) 2-629-0011
Editor’s Talk Hello, March Hello everyone. Now, it’s March, that means summer is coming. How have you been? In this season, it is the best time to go to trek in Nepal, a beautiful country and has a wonderful nature. So, we provide you lot of information about trekking in Nepal and where to trek. Not only that, but we also offer you many stories about travelling as we are. For example, “Ao Luk, Krabi” in “Destination Guide”, “Phuket’s Big Buddha” in “Place Guide” and “10 Travel Safety Tips You Can’t Afford To Ignore” in “Tips to Trip” We hope that you will enjoy our magazine and have a good time. Thank you for your support. See you again. God bye
Lomprayah Team Editor in Chief Photjanard Kantiwong
Executive Editor Wanitcha Sukchet Tinn Chacalanuwattanapong
Editorial Staff Vorapong Vongvarothai Juntiya Laoniyomthai Areeya Pichittanabordeekul Jiraporn Boonta Kitthawat Chaisingthong
Art Director Methakritsada Wanngoen
Graphic Designer Seattakit Meunnak Annop Sawatdipol
TREKKING IN NEPAL
Ref: http://trekbooking.com/blog/12-best-treks-in-nepal-snapshot-overview/ http://www.theguardian.com/travel/2013/may/24/trekking-in-the-himalayas-nepal-everest http://www.adventureboundnepal.com/
Nepal is the home of the eight highest mountains out of 14 (above 8,000 m) in the world which includes Mt. Everest and over 1,300 peaks above 6,000 meters. These all are towing above the populated valleys and forested plains, where there are the habitats of the lordly tigers and trundling one-horned rhinoceros. Hindu scriptures say that in “a hundred ages of the gods” you could not do justice to the Himalayas. So where do mere mortals start? Knowing where to go in an area 10 times the size of France is daunting, especially when just getting there is expensive. Everest gets most of the headlines, but the Himalayas are vast, especially when you include mountain ranges west of the Indus – the Pamir, Hindu Kush and Karakoram. This 4,000km crescent, stretching from Kyrgyzstan to Burma, is a geography of superlatives – the highest mountains, the deepest gorges, tracts of wild forest, the rolling high plateau of Tibet plus, in Bhutan and the Indian state of Assam in the eastern Himalayas, some of the greatest biodiversity on the planet. Then there are the people. It is true that in some areas the Himalayas are wild and barely populated, but in most there is an incredible diversity of cultures that have adapted to surviving in an environment that can be exceptionally hostile as well as incredibly beautiful. These huge peaks are also the meeting point for three of the world’s great religions: Islam in the west, Hinduism to the south and Tibetan Buddhism to the north. It’s an incredibly dynamic region. New roads and airports are making some areas more accessible, while diminishing the appeal of others, like the famous Annapurna Circuit in Nepal. Political change has also altered horizons. Mountains along the northern border of Burma have recently become accessible for the first time in decades, while visa restrictions and unrest in Tibet have made travelling there more difficult. Trekking is also changing. Many assume walking in the Himalayas is only for rugged types who enjoy roughing it. That was true in 1953, when Everest was first climbed and trekking tourism didn’t exist. Now there are new ways to experience the Himalayas: luxury lodges for those looking to take in the views with a bit of comfort; treks that focus as much on culture as scenery; and new lodges and homestays for those who want to relax and get beneath the surface of Himalayan life.
WHERE TO TREK IN NAPAL
EVEREST BASE CAMP
12/13 DAYS, +25,000 TREKKERS/YEAR
Great trekking terrain! You’ll stand face-toface with the world’s highest mountain – Mountain Everest (8,850m), and see multiple other majestic peaks. You’ll also meet the Sherpa people, renowned for the climbing skills. In short, fantastic trekking experience.
Good trekking terrain. Great Himalayan scenery. Comfortable trek with lots of teahouses. In recentyears road building has taken place along some parts of the trek, unfortunately decreasing the overall trekking experience.
13/14 DAYS, THE ENTIRE ANNAPURNA REGION +100,000 TREKKERS/YEAR
ANNAPURNA BASE CAMP
9/10 DAYS – PART OF THE ANNAPURNA REGION, +100,000 TREKKERS/YEAR
Annapurna Base Camp (4,320m) will allow you to stand face-to-face with the world’s most dangerous mountain to Climb (not trek…) – Annapurna I (8.091 m). Only having 10 days for trekking this trek is without doubt a great option.
Poonhill (3,210 m) offers great views of the Annapurna and Dhaulagiri Mountain Ranges. It’s a great trek for a sneak-peak into the trekking world. Highly recommended if only a few days available for trekking in Nepal.
POONHILL TREK 5-7 DAYS, PART OF THE ANNAPURNA REGION, +100,000 TREKKERS/YEAR
7-13 DAYS – 13,000 TREKKERS/YEAR
The best trek in Nepal, if only having 7-8 days available. Situated in the North towards Tibet Langtang is a good trek offering cultural insights such as monasteries, local villages, and an opportunity to select and hike you own preferred 4,984 m peak.
The Manaslu trek officially opened for trekking in the early 90s, a cutural trek par excellence, and without a doubt one of the best treks in Nepal. An appropriate name might be ‘Anaslu’ as this trek is likely to take over the popularity of the infamous Annapurna Circuit trek. Highly recommended.
15 DAYS – 6,500 TREKKERS/YEAR
EVEREST BASE CAMP 3 PASSES TREK 18 DAYS – PART OF THE SOLU KHUMBU REGION, +36,000 TREKKERS/YEAR
Looking for an adventure of a lifetime? This is the ultimate Everest quest. It is a long and challenging trek with 4 passes to climb. ALL efforts are, however, rewarded by stunning peaks, pristine nature, and excellent trails.
Situated just west of the Everest Base Camp trek the Gokyo trek is a great alternative if looking for fewer tourists and more remote nature. The five Emerald Lakes together with majestic mountain peaks is at the core of this trek.
12 DAYS – PART OF THE SULU KHUMBU REGION, +36,000 TREKKERS/YEAR
UPPER MUSTANG 14 DAYS – 3,000 TREKKERS/YEAR
Mustang, a former Himalayan Kingdom, is considered a last bastion of Tibetan culture. An otherwise traditional camping trek which is now available via conveniently spaced guesthouses. A great option if looking for unique Tibetan culture together with beautiful landscapes. Recommended!
It’s a hidden gem filled with cultural impressions – Tibetan style villages, barren landscapes, mountain peaks, and fertile rice terraces. It’s expensive but also fantastic. The mystique and uniqueness of the Upper Dolpo region was manifested by Peter Matthiessen in ‘The Snow Leopard’ written in 1979.
UPPER DOLPO 22 DAYS – 1,900 TREKKERS/YEAR
20 DAYS – 650 TREKKERS/YEAR
Camping adventure trek of a life time. You’ll be visiting one of the most rural regions in Nepal, surrounded by absolute pristine nature. It’s a hard and long trek and should only be done by rather fit trekkers. Go there!
Mt. Makalu, the fifth highest mountain in the world, presents you with challenging trails and unspoiled nature. Do not expect to meet other trekkers but do expect 100% communion with nature. A trek for the fit and adventurous.
17 DAYS – 1,500 TREKKERS/YEAR
MAKALU BASE CAMP
You will find enchants everywhere, at any part of the country, whether you are in the high Himalayas, hills or in the plain lands. The farmland meticulously carved like stairways, the green forest with birds and wildlife, running rivers chirping, all these have made this country a Shangri-La on the earth. Nepal is the best destination not only for the mountain lovers alone but for every one of them who wish to discover the natural diversity, variety of culture, flora and fauna among others, primarily through thrilling activities namely, trekking and tour, mountaineering, wildlife safari, rafting and many other adventurous activities. Therefore the world’s renowned travel writers have well-admired this country in recognition of its cultural, lingual, natural richness and penned down with a number titles, like living cultural museum, roof of the world, birthplace of the apostle of peace, country of living goddess, a tiny country of over one hundred ethnic ground, a country of non-stop festivals among others and more. These are the explicit and self-explanatory tales of this country. The innocent and kind hearted people of Nepal that you meet in every village welcome you with ‘Namaste’ greeting you for better tour and the temples and the ‘Mane’ that you walk by the trial will always bless you with good luck. It is always better to walk keeping the ‘Mane’ or temple on your right while walking through it. Come join us to experience the lifetime adventure and feel cultural diversity that lies within a small area of beautiful country Nepal !!
AO LUK KRABI Ref: http://www.krabi-hotels.com/seedo/ao-luk-attractions.htm
Ao Luk mangrove and caves is a suitable field for exploration and soft-adventure experiences in Krabi Province. Ao Luk District is located approximately 40km north of Krabi Town on the road to Phang Nga Town and enjoys an outstandingly preserved natural environment. This area is rural and hosts two parks: Than Bok Khorani and Khao Phanom Bencha National Parks. Tall limestone cliffs similar to those found in Phang Nga Bay dot the hilly lush landscape, and along the coast, mangrove forest and limestone cliffs offer sea kayakers an exciting tropical playground. The small town of Ao Luk is a genuine southern Thailand village that has been cut in two by the Krabi-Phang Nga highway. It is a charming place to have a short rest for people driving from Phuket to Krabi Town as a few street food stalls and a 7-Eleven allow tired drivers to grab a snack and a drink. In Ao Luk on the main road to Phang Nga-Krabi, turn left (when coming from Krabi Town) at the traffic light in the direction of Laem Sak. Bok Khorani National Park Headquarters is located on the left about two kilometres after the traffic light. The National Park headquarters offers a trail through the rainforest and limestone hills with waterfalls, caves and even a small Buddhist temple.
Popular with locals as it offers a cool, shady forest and a number of small pools, it is an ideal location for picnics and a swim and it gets busy at weekends. Bring your own snacks or sample barbecued chicken, fruit and snacks from local vendors at the entrance of the park.
Along the Ao Luk-Laem Sak Road, turn right approximately 3.5km after Than Bok Khorani National Park Headquarters and continue for 1.5km then turn left to reach a large parking space on the side of Tha Pring Canal. Here you can hire a long-tail boat for a few hundred baht and discover three caves in the mangroves: Tham Phi Hua To, Tham Lod Neua, and Tham Lod Tai. The latter is a long narrow limestone tunnel with stalactites and stalagmites and is best visited by long-tail boat at low tide. Tham Phi Hua Toh/Hua Galok is a large cave which used to be a burial site some 3,000 years ago. Some paintings on the ceiling of the cave are dated from this time. Tham Phi Hua Tho means ‘Bigheaded Ghost Cave’, due to the fact that the cave, viewed from Tha Pring Canal, looks like a huge limestone face. Apart from the paintings, the cave also displays some strangely shaped rocks: a dragon’s head and a crocodile head. There are other caves located in this area: Tham Prah Cave, the site of the Khao Prah Suhn Yah Tah Rahm Meditation Centre, Tham Pet Cave, named because the walls of the cave reflect light like a diamond.
PHUKET BIG BUDDHA
Phuket’s Big Buddha is one of the island’s most important and revered landmarks. The huge image sits on top of the Nakkerd Hills between Chalong and Kata and at 45 metres high it is easily seen from far away. The lofty site offers the best 360-degree views of the island (think sweeping vistas of Phuket Town, Kata, Karon beaches, Chalong Bay and more.) Easily reachable via a six-kilometre road leading from Phuket’s main artery, it’s a must-visit island destination.
PRACTICAL INFORMATION What to Wear Avoid beachwear, short skirts and T-shirts with offensive texts or images. If you feel you have dressed a little too daringly for a religious site you can always ask for a sarong to cover up with from the site centre, free of charge.
BIG BUDDHA Close up to the image itself it is very peaceful and the only noises you will hear are the tinkling of small bells and the yellow Buddhist flags in the compound flapping in the wind plus soft background dharma music. Known among Thais as the Phra Puttamingmongkol Akenakkiri Buddha in full, it is 25 meters across at the base. The whole body is layered with beautiful white Burmese marble that shines in the sun, making it a natural symbol of hope. The views, and the actual image itself are all breathtaking.
Did You Know a) Nakkerd Sea View Restaurant is located near the Big Buddha and is a nice place to chill out after visiting the site. The food there is reasonable in terms of taste and price and the view, of course, is wonderful. b) The road to Nakkerd Hills is in good condition, most parts are newly built but it has many curves and some steep climbs. Some young tourists enjoy hiking up, even though it usually takes them over an hour to reach the top.
OPENING HOURS From 08:00 – 19:30. If you want to catch the sunset from one of Thailand’s best spots, try to be there before 18:30
HOW TO GET THERE The road leading up to the Big Buddha is off Chao Fa Road East near Chalong. There are many red-andwhite signs indicating where it is. Turn down Soi Yodsane and simply follow the indications for the next six kilometres up the hill. You can’t miss it.
SIAM SUPPER CLUB PHUKET The Siam Supper Club is a chic, destination bar and grill bringing cool to a place known for it’s tropical heat. Laguna, Phuket provides the beautiful backdrop for this now internationally famous establishment. The menu is best described as “West Coast Cuisine” and serves what many say are the finest meats, fish and pizzas in South East Asia. If, indeed, the proof is in the pudding then our desert menu is topped off by the best Cheese Cake under the sun. Eating at the Siam Supper Club is said to be, by food connoisseurs, a truly unique taste experience on an island already famous for its food.
Address: 36 â&#x20AC;&#x201C; 40 Lagoon Rd., Cherngtalay, Thalang, Phuket, Thailand
Tel: +66 76 270936
THAI TEAW THAI #34
The mega-popular Thai tourism fair, the 34th Thai Teaw Thai, returns with local and international travel services and up to 70-percent discounts on accommodation, travel, car rental, cruises, spas and hotel meals. Date : 5-8 March 2015 Time : 10.00- 21.00 Location : Queen Sirikit National Convention center, All areas For more information Please visit : www.pkexhibition.com
A GETAWAY TO SAI NUAN
BEACH Ref: http://www.alexinwanderland.com/2015/02/16/vacation-paradise-getaway-sai-nuan-beach/
Not too many are up for making the effort to get to Sai Nuan, and so I was lucky enough to get to be the first one to show Bearded Bartender — or I mean, we could just call him Ian — my favorite beach not long after we met. That day I mentioned how I’d always dreamed of going off the grid and spending a night in one of the little beach huts dotting the bay — shown in the photo above — but for some reason I’d never made it happen. Sai Nuan has long been my favorite beach on Koh Tao. Tucked into the southwest corner of the island and more or less unreachable by road — I’d certainly never drive that treacherous dirt path some might call a road — you have to either take a longtail or hike a pleasant twenty minutes through a palm tree filled jungle to get here. When I want to get away from the hustle and bustle of Sairee Beach (that sound you hear is big city dwellers cackling at the idea of me calling that hustle and bustle), this is where I go. Some of you have picked up on my hints here and there that I was seeing someone again while I was back on Koh Tao — a few of you even took guesses of who in my usual cast of characters it might be! (Love it.) I don’t know why I was keeping mum, exactly, as it is quite out of character for me. But the secret’s out now — because there’s no way I couldn’t blog about the amazing birthday present Bearded Bartender — as my nicknameloving friends back home liked to call him — treated me to.
Saithong Resort is the one and only accommodation option at Sai Nuan. Supposedly you can book online but Ian didn’t really trust the system, so he ended up making two round trip visits to the resort to make our reservation. Even then, things were a little off — he’d specifically requested Bungalow #2, which we arrived to find another couple very much settled into. Actually, it turned out to be a blessing in disguise — Bungalow #1 had better views and more privacy. But I mean, ocean front with balconies bigger than the rooms themselves? You can’t go wrong. The rooms were extremely simple — wooden bed with mosquito net, fan, curtain for a bathroom door, clear ocean views from the holes in the wall of the cold water shower. We loved it.
In spite of what these photos show, our first day at Sai Nuan was actually super rainy and overcast. That was fine with us. We’d brought in both lunch and dinner takeaway from I Love Salad in Mae Haad (yes, that is the actual name of the establishment and they have my full and unwavering support in that decision) as well as several bottles of the most mediocre wine Koh Tao has to offer, and we were perfectly content to sit on our porch and watch the storm pass by. With no internet and barely any phone reception, we were truly off the grid. It might have been just for one night, but wow, did it feel good.
After breakfast at the onsite restaurant with free entertainment provided by the little ragamuffin above, it was all about beach time. I believe paper-book-loving Ian may have uttered the words, “Burn that photo of me reading a Kindle and never let it see the light of day,” but I’m pretty sure by that he meant please post it on the internets for literally any human on planet earth to see. Right? Right.
The next morning I woke up to the sound of water and thought, oh no! It’s rained all night and we’ll never be able to get out of here. Then I realized it was just the waves crashing on the rocks right below us. A peek through the slats of the wall revealed a perfect blue sky day.
In the little bay right next to Sai Nuan — technically I think they are one and the same — lies one of the most scenic and rasta-tastic bars on Koh Tao, Banana Rock. It’s an absolute must to toast to the end of a castaway getaway somewhere as epic as this. I can’t tell you what a special little getaway this was or how idyllic and dreamlike it felt. As the constant planner for myself, for my friends and for my family when we travel, it was indulgent and sweet to have someone plan something so thoughtful and sentimental all for me. We still talk about it all the time. Best part? The guy knows me well — he knew this social butterfly could never go off grid on her actual birthday! So this was more of a warm up, planned a few days before the actual date. And wow, were my friends about to pick up where he left off in the spoiling department. Stay tuned.
Top of the World
BEIJING AMONG WORLDâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;S MOST
Beijing has been ranked the fourth most romantic city in the world, according to a recent Time Out Global Dating Survey of 11,000 people in 24 cities around the globe. Paris retains its position as the most romantic city with the “best dating scene”, ahead of Melbourne, Kuala Lumpur and Beijing, and Chicago. London rounds up the top six. The survey also found that British is world’s most attractive accent in the world. More than a quarter of respondents in Paris, New York and Sydney preferred a UK accent with people. American accent came in second place, followed by Irish and Australian. French, once considered the language of love, was chosen as the sexiest accent by only 7.7 percent of respondents and occupies fifth place.
World Forestry Day or International Day of Forests is celebrated worldwide every year on 21st of March. The theme of the 2015 International Day of Forests (IDF) is Forests | Climate | Change, chosen purposely to highlight the ways in which forests and climate change are linked, and to rally global support for greater action and change. Forests and trees sustain and protect us in invaluable ways. They provide the clean air that we breathe and the water that we drink. They host and safeguard the planetâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s biodiversity and act as our natural defence against climate change. Life on earth is made possible and sustainable thanks to forests and trees.
Horoscope Predictions for the month of By Mr.
Rup Krishen Baqaya
With the energetic Mars passing through your sign, you will move fast and furious,at a frenetic pace and get things done.You will be crowned with success at work,what with all the luck on your side too.
You go after everything you want without care.There will be beneficial results in finances and personal affairs.Stars indicate the possibility of a passionate but secret love affair.Take care of children.
There is success in all you do.Some legal affairs will need your immediate attention.In love,you may revive an old fantasy.
Life is good.You spend time with the family,particularly children and the spouse and there is great love and bonding.You share joys on a higher plane.
You come to terms with your inner self.You forgive all those who have hurt you and ask for forgiveness too.You want to start things on a clean slate by forgetting all bitterness and moving ahead.At work,colleagues may ask you to handle more than your share.
The month favours travel,contacts,communication,correspondence and contracts.Go ahead with what must be done in the short term and you could expect the much awaited success in the coming months.
You are happiest when you have good partners to collaborate with. The stars indicate that the way forward is through new social contacts. You are advised to accept unusual invitations.
You are in no mood to compromise.However you are advised to keep keep those in power in good humour or you may be denied a financial opportunity.
This is a good time to expand your work.There is progress on all fronts and balance and equilibrium in your life.This is a month of glory too and you could expect appreciation from all quarters
You spend time with the family and realise that you have received unconditional love from many which you have been taking for granted or been unable to reciprocate..This realisation is taking you on the path to become a better human being.
This month,together with fun times,there is hard work too.Guard against arrogance,emotional flare ups and dominance.This is also a time to sign important documents.
You are zooming ahead of the opposition and on the way to becoming an asset to your organization with all your hard work,reliability and amiability. Beware of ego drives which may lead you to brook no opposition.
6 FASHION TRENDS THAT NEVER
GO OUT OF STYLE
Ladylike WHY IT KEEPS COMING BACK: It complements curves and looks polished but never over-the-top, says Patricia Mears, the deputy director of the Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology, in New York City. HOW TO WEAR IT NOW: Sophistication lies in the details. Bow-tie kitten heels or vintagey jewelry can effortlessly class up your jeans.
Animal Prints WHY IT KEEPS COMING BACK: Animal prints are like neutrals—they’re made up of brown, beige, and black, after all. “They’re seasonless, and you can wear them with almost anything,” says Jaffe. Plus, they add a little edge to your wardrobe. HOW TO WEAR IT NOW: Hit the spot in small doses if you fear the print will swallow you whole; animal print accessories, like those shown here, can be just as eye-catching.
Menswear WHY IT KEEPS COMING BACK: “You might expect menswear to be desexualizing, but it’s often the opposite,” says Sharon Graubard, the senior vice-president of creative services at the trend-forecasting agency Stylesight, in New York City. Menswear is flattering on almost any shape or size, and it works in or out of the office. HOW TO WEAR IT NOW: Dapper touches, like a fedora or a chunky watch, easily swing the other way and mingle with frilly dresses.
Minimalism WHY IT KEEPS COMING BACK: “Clean lines and functionality have always been hallmarks of American style,” says Mears. Audrey Hepburn’s Capris are a classic example of this intersection of ?lan and ease. HOW TO WEAR IT NOW: Pick one powerful piece (a geometric scarf, a sculptural cuff) and let it pop against something basic.
Florals WHY IT KEEPS COMING BACK: In a word, pretty. “We always think of a flower as the symbol of a woman,” says Mears. And there are countless interpretations to appeal to any taste—from soft, watercolor petals to full-on flower power, as worn by ’60s model and “it girl” Jean Shrimpton. HOW TO WEAR IT NOW: For a subtle approach, spruce up any old cardigan with a lively brooch or scarf.
Military WHY IT KEEPS COMING BACK: It’s functional, for one thing. And, like menswear, it has a tough, androgynous appeal. Who knew something called “olive drab” could be so versatile and rich? HOW TO WEAR IT NOW: Adding an accessory or two is all you need to get a casual outfit into high gear.
Global News Amazing Thailand Romance Symposium promotes honeymoons in Thailand The 2nd Amazing Thailand Romance Symposium, being held from 22-31 March, 2015, is promoting Thailand as a romantic destination for honeymooners, who can seek to celebrate their union by exploring the unique characteristics of Thai culture, the Thai way of life and Thai experience through hands-on activities; such as, Thai massage, Thai cooking, and Thai classical dance.
Thailand to host Asia’s first Travel Blog Exchange in October Bangkok, 26 March 2015 – The Thai tourism industry is set to significantly expand its social media profile when more than 1,000 bloggers and online writers worldwide convene for the first Travel Blog Exchange to be held in Asia between 15 – 17 October 2015, at the Queen Sirikit National Convention Centre in Bangkok.
TAT and AirAsia introduce Discover Thainess aircraft and promotions Air Asia will brand its newest Airbus A320 aircraft with the royal barge Supannahong image – the logo of 2015 Discover Thainess campaign. Also, its interior will be beautifully decorated with images of the “12 Hidden Gems”, the emerging promotional destinations as well as other Discover Thainess ads inviting all travellers to explore the charms of Thailand.
Thanks : http://www.traveldailynews.asia/news/article/58300/amazing-thailand-romance-symposium-promotes http://www.tatnews.org/thailand-to-host-asia%E2%80%99s-first-travel-blog-exchange-in-october/ http://www.traveldailynews.asia/news/article/58246/tat-and-airasia-introduce-discover
Tip to Trip
TRAVEL SAFETY TIPS YOU CANâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;T AFFORD TO IGNORE
DON’T LET THEM DISTRACT YOU If kids or anyone else ever come up to you begging or holding out a piece of paper/cardboard or something else in front of them, push it away immediately and secure your belongings. This is just a distraction so their nifty little fingers can get at your valuables.
SECURE YOUR LUGGAGE
When everything you own is carried round with you, it’s of paramount importance to keep this safe and sound. Even if it’s not worth much, it’s all you’ve got on your nomadic wanderings and what seems of little value to you, may be exceptionally tempting and valuable to people in the countries you visit. Keeping your luggage safe means securing it in any way possible, to prevent and deter anyone from tampering with or stealing your luggage… Always have a lock for your luggage – TSA-approved padlocks help to ensure that airport security don’t just cut it off and leave your luggage unlocked, plus they let you know if your luggage has been inspected. If you’re travelling on trains or you need to secure your bags temporarily (even if you’re sitting right next to them), then consider getting a backpack & bag mesh protector which encases your bag in a wire mesh and allows you to lock it securely to something to avoid it being taken. To help keep your possessions as safe as possible in your room both when you’re there or when you’re not, consider a travel door alarm to alert you of any suspicious activity.
SECURE YOUR LAPTOP
As a nomadic, work-anywhere entrepreneur your laptop is probably one of the most prized items you’re carrying. Not only is it crucial to running your business wherever you are, it probably cost a fair bit of money too. It’s well worth securing this valuable item with extra precaution and measures…
Consider carrying a laptop lock and using it to secure your laptop up when you leave your accommodation and/or if you use it at airports, in cafes or other places where it can easily be snaffled from right under your nose. You should also consider the type of bag you carry your laptop in – whilst a fancy Tumi laptop case might set you apart from the commuters in New York or London, it’s almost as good as carrying a sign above your head forecasting your “rob-ability”. Try getting a laptop backpack that looks more like an adventure backpack. Alternatively, you could try the Pacfsafe Theft-proof bag. There are certain places where you probably want to avoid carrying your laptop around with you. As nice as it might be to go and work on the beach or from a wireless cafe, be aware of who sees you out and about with it and keep it under wraps. You may also want to avoid broadcasting the fact that you have a laptop at your accommodation by wandering in and out of your accommodation with it under your arm.
If you’re new to a city and haven’t quite got the measure of the different neighbourhoods, then keep your wits about you as you’re walking around. You can usually tell whether you’ve unwittingly wandered into a different area by the type of people walking around, the state of the buildings and shop fronts on the streets. If you don’t notice any other tourists and you do see more threatening looking people around, then walk confidently in the direction you came (unless you know a quicker way out already) without getting your map out and head back to a safer, more touristy/populated area.
YOUR CASH & CREDIT CARDS You may or may not be a fan of those travel wallets that strap to various parts of your body. Whether you use one or not may depend upon where you’re going and whether you need to carry huge wads of cash about with you. If you do use one, then I’d recommend the more authentic “belts“over the leg, waist or shoulder-type pouches – unless, as a woman, it doesn’t go with your outfit! Keep a note of your credit card numbers and the telephone numbers needed to cancel them (but not the security number and/or expiration date). Whilst some people advise making photocopies of the front & back of your card, if these get mislaid or stolen the thief can use the details to order online.You can keep a soft copy of your cards, password-protected on your laptop if you must. You should let your credit card company and bank know that you will be overseas – and ideally where you’ll be. Banks monitor suspected fraudulent use and will stop a card from working if they suspect it. Whilst it often only takes a phone call to reactivate it, it’s more efficient to let them know your travel plans in advance.
As exciting as it may seem to join a public march or demonstration, if you’re in unfamiliar territory and a foreign land, then it’s best to avoid these. Whilst peaceful demonstrations may be the norm in your country, you don’t know that this will be the case in a foreign country and your visa may also be at risk if you are caught taking part in political demonstrations. It’s just not worth the risk for that little bit of excitement and camaraderie you might experience at the time.
OR AT LEAST TRY NOT TO STAND OUT If you are trying to blend in with locals – or at least stand out less – then on your first day in a place, notice how the locals dress and dress accordingly. Dead giveaways include: • Wearing sandals with white socks • Wearing trainers/sneakers • Wearing a bum-bag/fanny pack (unless you’re in the US perhaps) • Carrying a camera around your neck • Having a tourist map sticking out of your pocket • Wearing shorts & t-shirts when everyone else is dressed for business
AVOID BROADCASTING YOUR LACK OF LOCAL KNOWLEDGE Unless you’re in a touristy area where everyone else is doing the same, the be careful about getting your map out and trying to figure out where you are. The same goes for standing in the middle of the road and pointing vigorously to specific points of interest in the distance – another dead giveaway that you’re less than a local.
As you’re walking around unfamiliar areas, especially in the dark, take note of specific landmarks, buildings and amenities. If you ever feel threatened, it’s useful to know a ‘friendly’ place you can duck into (the nearest shop, bar, cafe, gas station, mini mart or restaurant) as soon as you can to either call for help or wait until the threat has passed.
ESCAPE ROUTE LEAVE YOUR VALUABLES AT ‘HOME’
Depending upon where you are, you may want to consider always leaving your laptop, jewellery, watches or other expensive items at home rather than carting them around with you. Whilst some people have had bad experiences of laptops and valuables being stolen whilst left in a room/apartment, being robbed of an item directly from your person can be a far more unpleasant experience. Plus, you’re increasing the chance of something else happening (like dropping it or losing it) whilst you’re out and about.