DoDEA OSS: Safety and Security Tips: When Traveling Away From Home
- Tell only those who need to know that you will be away.
- Call your local security office for information on the areas you plan to visit. They can advise you on the area or put you in contact with the responsible agency
- Carry the address and phone numbers of U.S. military facilities, U.S. Consulates, and U.S. Embassies in the area.
- If you wear glasses or contact lenses, carry spares.
- Bring a sufficient supply of required medication. Carry a copy of the prescription, and know the generic name.
- Be discreet in revealing your DoD affiliation or home address. In some areas, sophisticated criminal rings attempt to learn the home addresses of vacationers and then report this information to colleagues in the home country or area who burglarize homes while people are away. By simply learning your name and city, they may be able to check a telephone book and learn your address. Some have even been known to steal house, apartment, and car keys and mail them to colleagues. Make a copy of the following and place in different pieces of luggage in case the originals are lost or stolen:
- Passport pages with number, photograph, issue information, and any required visas
- ID card, Leave, TDY papers and/or Border Crossing Documents
- Use a money/document belt for copies of identification documents, a separate credit card and emergency funds. Consider what you will do if your wallet or purse is stolen.
- Be wary of pickpockets, especially in crowded areas and major tourist attractions. Do not be distracted. Carry valuables and belongings in a secure manner (not in
- handbags or coat/hip pockets). Handbags should be kept in front of you, closed, with the fastener towards your body. Wallets should be kept in front pants pocket.
- Travel light. Pack only what you need. Don't use military style luggage like duffel or flight bags.
- Avoid carrying potentially controversial materials such a gun magazines, military publications, religious books, pornography or magazines that can offend or antagonize. Watch your luggage at all times, especially in hotel lobbies, airports and train stations.
Sources for Additional Information
The U.S. Department of State operates a 24 hour per day information center. Travel advisories for countries and areas can be obtained from the center, and travelers can report emergencies involving U.S. citizens. Information concerning marriages overseas, citizenship questions, and judicial services can also be obtained. The telephone number is (202) 647-5225.
Most U.S. military transportation offices maintain travel advisories issued by the U.S. Department of State through Department of Defense channels.
Pamphlets and publications can provide valuable information concerning general security issues and crime prevention tips; but they should not be used as a sole source of such information. The most current and specific information can and should be obtained from Law Enforcement Officials, Security Officers, and/or U.S. Embassy Regional Security Officers in the area in which you live or are planning to travel.
Be Smart | Be Alert | Be Aware