Travel to France the Safe way

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Research shows that over 20% of people who go on holiday to France end up falling victim to thieves, and the summer holiday season is a big opportunity for pick pockets.

Whilst you can take out insurance against loss of any valuable items, most things we own are not only valuable because of the cost, but also because they mean something special to us. This makes it all the more important for us to remember to leave any items we value safe at home.

Groups can try to distract you by trying to carry all your luggage, finding the exit, trying to find the toilets and trying to keep the kids together- this gives thieves an excellent chance to step in and strike, so don’t leave your bags alone for a second.

Items like passports, visas, tickets, money and jewellery should all be kept in a safe box at your hotel, and now even some campsites offer this to their campers- so ask and find out. Failing this, always make sure you put them in a safe place. Pick a handbag with a long strap that you can wear across your body for safety, and make sure it has a strong zip or clasp. Because British men are disinclined to wear bags, make sure they always keep wallets or money in a zipped pocket- not sticking out of the back one!

When you’re not using your mobile, make sure it’s kept out of sight in your back or pocket- or even a special mobile phone holder that you can put around your neck.

If someone bumps into you, check your belongings are safe. It might be a genuine accident, but bumping into people and brushing into their bag is a common trick for thieves, so it pays to be vigilant. The same goes for when you’re using an ATM machine, make sure no one can lean across you and read your card details, and if someone walks into you cover your card.

Common sense dictates you should keep your car locked when you’re not in it, and any valuable items should be taken with you, or locked in the glove compartment. Don’t leave bags in plain view, and any items too big to put away somewhere should be covered by a blanket or placed under seats. At service stations it can be difficult to keep an eye on your car, so try and park as close to the station as possible and sit somewhere in view of it if you’re concerned.

Camping has grown in popularity for those holidaymakers on a budget, but whilst it is a cheap and fun way to have a holiday it presents the problem of how best to protect any valuable items. As previously said, some sites offer a safe box, but if this isn’t the case keep them well hidden at all times and when you go out, to the pool, playground or restaurant designate a person to look after them.