Christmas is the one time of year where it’s socially acceptable to let our guards down. But whether you’re travelling home for the Christmas period or are just planning a big shopping trip, what can you do to make sure you’re as safe as possible? Because, while it is the most wonderful time of the year, it’s also a time of year that can catch people off-guard and leave them open to distraction.
With that in mind, here are our five top tips for staying safe this festive season.
1. Tell family you’re on your way
If you’re travelling home for Christmas, make sure that your family are aware of the train times for your journey if you’re taking the train or the route you’re taking if you’re driving home for Christmas. Even consider sharing your location on WhatsApp with the people you’re travelling to so you can give them a good indication of if you are where you should be.
2. Be aware of your environment
There is something to be said for not letting your guard down completely during the festive season as there are rogue elements out there who will be relying on your to do just that. So, stay alert when out and about, avoid walking through dark and open spaces even if it takes a little longer and don’t walk alone at night with your headphones in. Because while you might feel safe in your little musical bubble, you also won’t be able to hear someone coming up behind you.
3. Be sensible with social media
Checking in on social media sites can be an addictive pastime but there is a time and a place for it. If you let the entire world know where you are at all times then it can have devastating consequences. What, for example, if someone was able to check your social media, realises you were not going to be home for a week and then use the opportunity to break into your home?
4. Pre-arrange transport
Never go out without knowing how you’re going to get home. Taxis, in particular, can be almost impossible to get at the last minute over the Christmas season so always pre-book transportation and only use licensed taxi cabs.
5. Look out for each other
This can’t be underlined enough. Whether you’re going out for Christmas drinks or just going on a shopping trip with your family, look out for one another. There has been, for example, a major increase in drink spiking across the country in recent months and this could get even worse over Christmas. So never accept a drink from a stranger and ensure your friends are not going over their limits. Keep other people safe this Christmas and they’ll keep you safe. It is the season of giving, after all.