Chicago is the most wonderful place to celebrate the most wonderful time of the year. While you’re out shopping and enjoying holiday festivities, be aware of your surroundings and always put safety first. Here are 10 tips to make your holiday season a little safer.
- Money Handling: Make of a list of where you are going each day. Allocate a dollar amount for each stop. Choose your form of payment. Keep currency and cards easily accessible, yet secure. Avoid pulling out large wads of cash or breaking large bills. You don’t want lurkers to see you handling a lot of cash.
- ATM: Use indoor ATMs or get cash back with purchases. If using outdoor drive through ATMs, go during banking hours. Avoid machines in dark, isolated areas.
- Other People: When entering and leaving buildings, wait for other people. Avoid going into buildings or going to your vehicle or public transportation alone, especially at night.
- Mobile Device: Put your phone away. Don’t walk around, while looking at your phone. It can be a distraction, that jeopardizes your safety. Phones can also be a target for theft. Keep it accessible, but not visible.
- Valuables: Keep valuable out of site. The best place for them is at home. If you must carry them, make sure that they are tucked away. Don’t walk around with valuables in your hand.
- Packages: Don’t leave packages visible in your vehicle. Place them in the trunk before you leave the store. Don’t get out and put them in the trunk once you reach your next destination, then walk away from the vehicle.
- Service People: Verify all service personnel. If you did not schedule a visit, you should call the company to make sure that they sent someone, before you allow anyone into your home.
- Arrival: Always let someone know when you will be arriving, so that they can be looking for you or meet you outside. Some mobile devices allow you to share your location with others. Make sure that someone knows where you are at all times.
- Instincts: Follow your gut. If something doesn’t feel right, then don’t do it.
A joyous holiday season starts with safety. With just a little extra time and effort, you can make the holiday season safer for you and your family.