Airport Personal Security

Before you leave home plan what your going to do with your car once you get to the airport should you take it which is advisable as leaving your car unattended at home only increases the risk of alerting potential criminals to your absence as the car will not have moved for the duration of your time away.

Most importantly, what you will do when you arrive at your destination, will you be traveling by bus or taxi from the airport or have you pre booked a hire car to get to your hotel.

If you leave your car at the airport leave it in the official airport car park. People try to find cheap parking by parking two miles away from the airport but then you have the problem of getting back to once you get back and again it only increases the chance of your car being stolen or broken into..

If friends and family want to see you off, don’t say your goodbyes at the airport. Do it before you leave.

A group standing about hugging and shaking hands is a magnet for criminals who will be away you’re your bags while you are still wiping away the tears from your eyes.

That risk also applies equally at home as well as abroad. Whether you are arriving or departing, the most dangerous side of any airport is the landside.

When you get to the airport, go straight to the check in desk, and then go through the customs and immigration on to the airside duty free.

Many people stay landside until the last minute , because they think the facilities aren’t as good on the airside, but once your through you can relax and there is in fact more to do  airside like duty free and other shops restaurants to keep you occupied.

The main reason though is that everyone airside has gone through security and is going on a flight, there are so many security systems to keep the two sides apart keeping the potential criminals away, your going to be as safe there as you can possibly be in the airport.

The same applies in reverse when you reach your destination. You’re relatively safe on the airside, collecting your baggage, but when you come through onto the landside you are vulnerable and must again heighten your awareness.

You must also have a clear idea of how you’re going to get away from the airport as mentioned earlier, there is nothing worse than travelling long distance and arriving feeling jet lagged and confused – this will be the most dangerous part of your journey as criminals are aware of this and will be lying in wait for those tired confused un prepared tourists just flown in from the U.K to Thailand for example.

Airports are high risk areas not only for tourists. They’re perfect territory for crime because just like post offices where on pension days, criminals can again be sure that there will be a lot of vulnerable people carrying a lot of cash and valuables.

So you don’t want to be coming out of the airport badly stressed, carrying suitcases and shoulder bags with laptops and screaming and shouting at the kids whilst looking around confused and dazed at signposts like a tourist, you’re sending out signals to potential criminals of look at me I’m lost and haven’t got a clue where I’m supposed to go.

At the airport you have all your belongings and valuables with you, so plan your journey wisely before you arrive at your destination so that when you arrive you know exactly where to go and what to look for so you get to your hotel or villa with minimum fuss, the less time you spend frolicking around at the airport the less chance you have of being recognized.

IN FLIGHT

You should have your most valuable items with you during the flight, either on your person or in your cabin baggage according to the airports security protocol.

They should never go into your hold luggage because of the risk of pilfering; suitcases are routinely broken into or go missing.

A lesson I learnt the hard way, when my flight stopped in Turkey for a plane security check on route back from the far east, myself and many other passengers had our luggage broken into and valuable items where taken, obviously we didn’t have a clue that this had happened until we landed back in the U.K,

When the suitcases where  they raided,they where sealed back up to look as if they hadn’t been tampered with in the first place,obviously once your back on home turf, the chances of finding the culprits and having your valuables returned are minimal, I put it down to a costly lesson well learnt.

People normally continue to carry their passports, traveler’s cheques, cash, and credit cards on there person after they arrive. However this makes them very vulnerable to should they get targeted by criminals.

As soon as you have cleared immigration and picked up your suitcases from the luggage carousel, put most of the valuables that you had on your person during the flight into your heavy cases distribute them equally amongst the cases and lock them.

If you lose one case, you’ve only lost some of your valuables instead of all of them, but the chances of losing any are much reduced. No one can pick up a sixty pound suitcase and run off with it, but they can easily snatch a shoulder bag, laptop bag or hand bag.

Whether travelling by hire car, taxi or being picked up by friends, you should get away from the airport as quickly and safely as you can. If you’re not being met by friends and there is no hotel courtesy car, there are three safe ways of travelling: Taxi, Airport shuttle or hire car.