Tips for a Stress-Free Vacation

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by Michael Huber, Director of Business Development

After this past year, if you’re anything like me, you’re ready to get away from home and create some vacation memories. Whether it’s a short weekend trip with your special someone or an international adventure with family, I imagine you are ready for an escape. Unfortunately, the world has changed a bit over the last decade, and with an eye to making sure all those memories you collect on the way are good ones, I wanted to pass along a few tips and tricks that we have learned here at Huber & Associates to make sure your vacation is as stress-free as possible. (Sorry, none of these will prevent your kids from asking “Are we there yet?!”)

If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

Watch for scams like offers for a free trip or the “too good to be true” vacation home rentals. While some offers may be legitimate, be wary of any that require you to pay fees, enroll in a bogus club or listen to a sales pitch. Other offers are created by scammers intended to get your sensitive information or trick you into clicking a malicious link.

Don't overpack!

Only bring the electronic devices you need. Keep your unnecessary travel items at home or locked in a safe back at your hotel. Did you know a laptop is stolen every 53 seconds?

Safely see the sights.

But keep your belongings close or in a safe. Pickpocketing can ruin a trip in a matter of seconds. Those who have mastered the craft can perform their theft without you even noticing. Not only can a thief walk away with your money, but a stolen credit card, phone or passport can be much more damaging.

Have you heard about digital pickpockets?

Watch out for skimmers. These malicious card readers, which can commonly be found at gas stations and ATM terminals, can record your card data for a criminal. Check for signs of tampering anywhere you can swipe your card. Pay with a credit card or cash instead of debit whenever possible.

Stay securely connected.

Make sure to use a verified and secure Wi-Fi connection, pack a mobile hotspot or check if your phone can become a hotspot. Scammers can create their own fake Wi-Fi networks, so the best approach is to avoid accessing sensitive accounts and information when on a public Wi-Fi connection. Plus, you only want to bring home memories, not malware.

Avoid TMI.

Enjoy the trip of a lifetime, but perhaps wait to post about your trip on social media until you return. Digitally savvy criminals can quickly tell if you’re not home based on your posts and take advantage of the situation.