Spring break. A phrase synonymous with cutting loose and going wild. But how do we make sure that we’re getting into fun, and not getting into trouble? Before you pack your bags and hit the beach, let’s look at 10 tips from teenvogue.com that should ensure a safe and fun spring break:
- Embrace The Buddy System – “Come with friends, leave with friends” says GirlsFightBack.com, an organization devoted to female education and empowerment. “..We need to look out for each other, and if you see someone not in your group in a potentially bad situation, look out for them too. Being an active bystander is the best way we can work together to end violence of all kinds”
- Protect Your Assets – Before you leave, make copies of your passport, ID, and credits cards, and keep one of each in your hotel room at all times. Leave excess money, jewelry, and flashy accessories at home. Spring break destinations aren’t just popular with tourists, they’re popular with pickpockets too, so keep your belongings close, and only take the essentials.
- Do Your Research – Before leaving, read up on your destination, and arrange as much of the journey as possible from the safety of your own home. Flights, ground travel and hotels are typically available through online bookings, and arranging them now will give you peace of mind when you arrive.
- Stay Alert – Always be aware of your surroundings. In new areas it’s important to know where you are, where you’re headed, and the safest way to get there. If you’ve arranged for transportation, be sure you know who is coming to get you, and keep a record of any license plates, addresses, or other important information along the way.
- Keep Your Hotel Room To Yourself – When checking in or out, make sure you don’t say your hotel room number too loud, and be sure you don’t mention where you’re staying when out in public. Hang out with new acquaintances in well populated areas, like pools and restaurants, and leave your hotel for you, your friends, and your family.
- Drink Smartly – Whether you’re old enough to drink alcohol or not, be sure your eye is on your beverage at all times. Don’t put it down, don’t accept drinks from strangers, and remember, if you’re of age, you can have fun without binge drinking. Know your limits, and when to say you’ve had enough.
- Plan Ahead – Along with doing your research, when you arrive, plan out your days. Where you’re going, how long you’ll be gone, and when you’ll be back. Be sure any friends that aren’t coming with you know your plans, and where you’ll be at all times.
- Stay Healthy – If you’re headed out for some sun, pack sunscreen. And don’t forget to properly hydrate. Tap water in many areas is unsafe to drink, so do your research, and bring a bottle of water.
- Keep Your Guard Up – It’s easy to get distracted, but don’t let yourself get carried away. Stay alert, and keep your guard up. You don’t need to do anything you don’t want to, and remember, when it doubt just say no.
- Stay Connected – Keep your phone fully charged and know how to use it in a foreign country. No cellphone? Buy a pay-as-you-go phone when you arrive at your destination. 9-1-1 and other emergency services aren’t always available in foreign countries so be sure to know who to contact in the event of an emergency.
If you follow these ten tips, and use a bit of common sense, you’ll enjoy your spring break and come home happy, and most importantly, safely.