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Solo travels might be daunting, but with the right measures taken, they can be fun, safe and enjoyable too. Here are five tips on how you can travel securely, with the help of these safety apps and gadgets.
In case of an emergency, a few seconds can make all the difference. Having one-touch access to help could save your life, so make sure to check out these recommendations before your next flight.
Tip: While there are several personal safety apps out there, these three are highly rated. Watch Over Me lets you decide on the duration of tracking required and enables you to call for help with an action as simple as shaking of your phone; bSafe makes calling, recording and live streaming functions available when SOS is activated while the in-built AI technology on Kitestring will send your emergency contacts a personalised alert message if you fail to respond.
Alternatively, invest in wearable devices such as an Apple Watch that comes with a side button that can trigger an emergency alert.
Imagine the hassle of replacing your lost belongings during a trip. It would not only cause unnecessary stress and dampen your holiday mood, but also disrupt your travel plans.
For larger items such as laptops and professional cameras, you could invest in trackable tags such as Tile Trackers. All you need to do is stick these coin-sized trackers onto your items and sync them to your phone via an app. For real-time GPS tracking, consider getting the SpyTec’s STI GL300 tracker. Given that it’s lightweight, it can fit anywhere, from handbags to backpacks.
Having basic knowledge of the language spoken by locals would be useful if you need to call out for help or understand what you’re being told in a sticky situation.
Tip: Used by corporate clients as well as regular travellers, TripLingo will not only show you essential slangs and phrases, but also instantly translate any voice in 19 languages. Another handy app for this purpose is Speak and Translate, which allows for real-time translations ─ 117 languages for text translations and 54 languages for voice translations.
If you prefer a pocket translator without having to whip out your phone, AI-powered Travis Touch is making waves on Indiegogo for its ability to translate over 100 languages as well as other nifty features such as doubling up as a portable hotspot. Another gadget to check out is the sleek OXSII smart voice translator, which supports real-time translation of more than 30 languages as you speak. When synced with your phone, it can also display the translated text on your smartphone in a conversation-like interface.
While convenient, public Wi-Fi has its own set of underlying dangers. Often, these public networks are not entirely securely, making your personal data greatly susceptible to hackers when you connect to such networks with your digital devices.
Tip: Consider buying local prepaid SIM cards at your destination instead, whether you’re a frequent traveller or not. At a small price, you will enjoy a stable connection and secure network. Most service providers do provide affordable roaming data packages as well. This would be a good option for those who would prefer a fuss-free solution.
Alternatively, check if your hotel or serviced apartment has a free smartphone that will allow you to get internet access and set up your own hotspot anywhere you go.
Always travelling with loose sheets? Back up these important papers before you fly to put your mind at ease. It will also come in handy if you need to have your documents replaced overseas, making the process much smoother and simpler.
Tip: Take photos of your documents and upload them to cloud-based services such as Dropbox or Google Drive. These are relatively safe and secure storage providers that are accessible worldwide and have strong customer support for data recovery. To get high-resolution images that can be printed later on, use an app such as Camscanner.
For extra security, you can add in password protection under the Link Settings for every folder in Dropbox. For alternate access and safekeeping, you could choose to share the link to your folders with your family members.
However, if you prefer to restrict access, you can always go back to basics and save your documents on a good ol’ thumb drive.
Travel smart and safe on your next trip with our handy guide. Share with us in the comments below if you know of any other great recommendations or check out more tips and tricks.