South America travel and the myths around it sometimes make you grab your head or even give it up the idea of travelling there. Of course, it is true that the level of security here is different from the European one. However, bloggers and magazines often exaggerate this problem. Today we will try to figure it out. Separate myths from the truth and tell you how to avoid troubles during South America travel.
Of course, bad things happen and it can’t always be prevented. However, it is possible to minimize the risks during South America travel.
Copy of the documents
This is one of the most important things for South America travel due to two reasons. First, it is obvious that if we lose the original documents (or have them stolen), it will be easier to cope with all the formalities, including the most important one – to get new documents.
The second reason to use the copies concerns the prevention of the previous situation. We can take the copies when go outside and leave the documents in the apartment / hotel. This way we minimize the possibility of theft or loss. In most situations (card verification when shopping, any official events) and in most countries we only need a copy of the documents.
It’s also a good idea to scan your documents before South America travel and store them somewhere online – in the cloud, in the mail, or anywhere else.
Taxi is not so safe
There are many stories about unpleasant situations related to taxis – theft, kidnapping, etc. To minimize the risks check the legality and safety of the taxi service you are going to use, if it’s possible. Always sit in the back and close the door. It is also a good idea to use mobile applications to order a taxi, which has data about the driver and car numbers.
Another thing about safety in taxi during South America travel. Always take the things to the salon. Large backpacks are better also be kept with you. If this is not possible, then after a taxi stop, get out and immediately get them out of the trunk, and then pay the driver. This is to ensure that he will not leave with your luggage as soon as you leave the salon.
Do not buy things at exorbitant prices
Attempts to take away your money will haunt you in taxis, at fairs, in shops, bars and various service points – everywhere! This applies not only to thieves who strive to get a purse out of the bag, but also to overpricing.
Find out the approximate and average prices, and if you hear from the seller too different amount, then refuse, thank and leave. America is a continent where there are plenty of shops, especially food stores, so you don’t have to go far to find another one. Do not let sellers hang on products “exclusive” prices for you, just because you are a tourist.
Watch your luggage
This may sound corny, but don’t lose sight of your belongings and bags with valuables (documents, electronic equipment, wallet). In buses, restaurants, public places keep them on your knees or at your feet to touch, but never leave them unattended. Because the contents of the backpack can instantly disappear, and you will not even notice at when and where it happened.
Also be carefull on the streets during South America travel. There are cases when one person draw your attention while his accomplice takes the things.
Do you know how much time does the thief from South America need to retrieve something from a tourist’s bag or backpack in the restaurant? 7 seconds! Amazing and scary, isn’t it?
It is better to discard the habit of trusting people in the uniform during South America travel . So many times we have heard about corrupt cops there.
If you find yourself in a situation where a police officer wants to check if you have money, and ask you for the purse, then reply you can do it only at the police station, not on the street. The probability that a real police officer will ask you about it is small. It is hard to believe, but people agree and do it, they give their wallets.
Don’t fall for it under any circumstances. The police simply have no right to ask you about it under the guise of checking the “legality” of money or under any other drivel.
Don’t show off
Do you like to express yourself with brand clothes? Do you like to emphasize the wealth level with expensive jewelry? Your style consists of beautiful and expensive things? Although it’s a bit unfair, you better leave these things at home during South America travel. They will only attract attention in a bad way. Remember that you go where people are mostly below the poverty line. It is better not to tempt fate and not to tempt potential thieves. Wearing clothes equivalent to their monthly budget can cause aggression.
Wherever we go while South America travel, it is better not to take all the money along. For example, we can prepare two wallets for a trip. One of them should be left in the hotel room, the other with less money take with you.
Mathematics in South America is a relative term
In this case, it is not only about inflated prices and fraud, but also about the amount of change that accidentally turned out to be wrong. Mathematics is not the strongest side of the locals. So always check and count the change.
Don’t go to extremes! Keep common sense in everything and don’t let the exaggerated fear spoil your South America travel on this beautiful continent. Remember that on the trip you will meet mostly good or neutral people. The bad men, as elsewhere in the world, are in minority. Enjoy every day of the journey and get the most out of it!
The world is beautiful and waiting you to explore it!