Tag Archives: travel safety

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) put out a very helpful infographic helping travelers avoid getting sick when traveling overseas.

According to the CDC, “Unclean food and water can cause travelers’ diarrhea and other diseases. Travelers to developing countries are especially at risk. In otherwise healthy adults, diarrhea is rarely serious or life-threatening, but it can certainly make for an unpleasant trip. Take steps to avoid diarrhea when you travel.”

This is why many people get hepatitis A and other vaccinations before traveling.

The CDC put together a helpful infographic for a rough and ready guide to what is probably safe to consume where you’re going.
cdc inforgraphic food safetyClick image for a full-size version

What’s Safer (source: CDC) 

  • Pasteurized dairy products like milk
  • “Dry” food like bread or crackers
  • Water, sodas, or sports drinks that are bottled and sealed (carbonated is safer)
  • Hot coffee or tea
  • Hard-cooked eggs
  • Food that is cooked and served hot
  • Meat that is cooked all the way through
  • Food from a factory sealed package or container
  • Fruit and vegetables you have washed in clean water or peeled

What’s Not

  • Fountain drinks
  • Water or ice made from the tap or a well
  • Flavored ice pops
  • Unpasteurized dairy products
  • Food from street vendors
  • Bushmeat (monkeys, bats, or other wild game)
  • Food served at room temperature
  • Raw or undercooked (rare) meat or fish
  • Raw or soft-cooked (runny) eggs
  • Unwashed or unpeeled raw fruits and vegetables
  • Salads

Texas Tower expedites U.S. passports and travel visas. We also obtain certified U.S. birth certificates, translations, and more. 
Call us at 713-874-1420. 

Common TravelLike any other industry, you have to be aware of scams. Here is an overview of some of the most common travel scams and how to avoid being scammed.

Scam Offer: Travel Deal that is deeply discounted to pennies on the dollar
Many deals are legit, however this particular scam won’t give you time to think about it and will expire in say 10-12 hours, so you better act fast. Read the fine print and make sure the travel restrictions to take advantage of the deal aren’t ridiculous like limited travel times, limited destinations or hidden fees.

Scam Offer: You sit through a sales pitch, real estate offer for “free” travel
This one isn’t as common, but still occurs. You get a postcard or email to take advantage of a no-strings tour or presentation and at the end of this pitch, you will get some free travel vouchers. Generally the travel vouchers won’t be free travel but mere discounts on already insanely priced travel packages. The vouchers are usually non-transferable.

Scam Offer: You rent a vacation home from someone who isn’t an owner
With the ability to post ads online, use AirBnB or Craigslist, this scam is out in full force. Basically it works like this. You run across the perfect deal on a vacation rental, you pay a down payment or other arrangement and the person doesn’t even actually own the property. When you try to get the keys or paperwork, it’s not unusual to find the scammer has already skipped town with your payment. To avoid this one, only rent through a reputable company.

Scam Offer: Free Vacation Winner!
You receive a very official looking letter in the mail that you have won a vacation in a contest you never entered (first red flag) all you have to do is call the number to redeem your vacation package. You call and find they want your credit card info to charge you for your prize and the fees on these winnings are usually huge.

Those are just a few of the most common travel scams out there. Have you been scammed?

Yes, the U.S. Department of State issued a travel warning for travelers going to Mexico. The warning was issued mainly due to security concerns from organized crime activities in certain regions.

Mexico welcomed 35-million international travelers in the past year, and they are expected to break those numbers this year. With the largest travel season in history set to kick off, this doesn’t mean you have to cancel your trip to Mexico. Millions of U.S. citizens travel to Mexico every year for reasons that range from business to pleasure to education. Included in that number are 150,000 visitors who cross the border into Mexico every day.

The Mexican government makes an effort to keep travelers safe. There are some basic safety tips you can know, that will keep your travel in Mexico, a pleasurable one.US Travel Advisory - How Safe Is Mexico.clipular

1. Research your destination.
Get the latest information on the city or region you’re planning to visit by checking the U.S. State Department’s travel alerts page for the most current information on warnings for tourists.

2. Think twice about valuables.
If you really don’t need that cocktail ring or your expensive watch on this trip – don’t bring it. It will make you far less attractive to pickpockets and thieves.

3. Double up on your documents.
Scan your passport and other travel documents and email them to yourself. You’ll at least have a copy to refer to if they get lost or stolen.

4. Write down credit card bank numbers.
Find out the international number for your bank or credit card and take it with you. Most toll-free numbers won’t work from Mexico to reach your bank.

5. Just in case.
Make sure someone at home knows your itinerary for your trip.

6. Forget the fanny pack.
Fanny packs are often targets for pickpockets. Go for an underclothing money belt or purse-boots that have special pockets sewn within for holding credit cards, passport, and even cell phones without showing.

7.  Financial backup plan.
Take a few traveler cheques with you just in case. Just in case can mean that ATM that ate your credit card or your card gets stolen. It’s always a good idea to have a backup plan.

Those are just seven tips for making it a safe trip to Mexico. If you want more information just contact our offices during business hours via phone or feel free to hit us up on Facebook with questions – we’re ready to help!