As much as travellers want to be carefree and trusting, it’s not always the smartest idea. When it comes to your belongings, people will still steal from you even if you’ve got some killer travel tales and you never turn the lights on when you come back late. Unfortunately, some people just don’t care that your a nice guy/gal! So, here’s a few tips to protect your belongings in your hostel.
Get a Locker
This is the absolute first point of call. If your hostel doesn’t have lockers then your going to spend your time trying to make your bag look like a sleeping body under the duvet and carrying your valuable items around with you. If you book accomodation in advance, you can easily check if your hostel has lockers on many booking sites. Just scroll down to ‘facilities’ or ‘security’ and you’ll be able to check if lockers are included. If you’re not booking in advance, make it one of your first questions at the check-in desk.
Lock Up Your Bag
I simple lock on the zipper of your bag can make quite a difference. Your much less likely stolen from if you make it clear that you have made security measures. This implies that the lock will only be the first point of security and whatever is in your bag will be difficult to find or steal.
Spread Out Your Cash
If a thief does manage to get into your bag, you want to make sure that they don’t get everything. Make sure you don’t have all your cash in one place otherwise you’ll be left with nothing. Separate your cash into different areas of your bag and hide it in discreet places like medicine boxes or socks.
Although monetary loss makes travelling very difficult, loss of your documents can be much, much worse. Of course, keep your documents in a safe place and never hand them over to hostel owners or tour guides. If someone at the desk insists, give them one of your scanned copies instead. Scanned copies of your documents are also useful if you do lose the originals, you have all the information you need to request new documents.
If there is a thief a your hostel, and you’re in the bar, bragging about how much you spent last night, you can bet you’re going to be the first on his/her stealing list. So, it’s best not to shout about splashing your cash. In fact, in all aspects of life, this is probably good advice!
Stay in Seeing Distance When You Lend Stuff
We don’t want you to be paranoid about everyone, but it is sensible to stay near by the stuff you have lent out. If the person you are lending something to is trustworthy, they will have no problem with this a) because they’re not trying to steal and b) because they will be dealing with the same problems of theft while travelling.
Not just your photos, but all the information you may have saved on your phone/tablet/laptop for travelling. This way, if something does get stolen, you’ve only lost the item itself, not all the bookings, phone numbers and flight details you need. You can do this easily enough by emailing yourself information or simply sign up to a cloud storage site that regularly saves your data. You can read about our top picks for backing-up data on the move here.
Get Travel Insurance
Yes, it’s obvious. No, not everyone does it.