Top 5 Shopping Safety Tips
By Elissa Sanci
The holiday season is here and we all know what that means—the time to shop is now upon us. Shopping can be a great way to bond with friends, something fun to look forward to and a fun way to spend your Saturday. But it can also lead to a lot of stress and anxious feelings—you’re already worried about money and whether or not grandma will like the bag you just bought her; keeping safe shouldn’t be another concern on your mind. Here are five things you can do to keep safe this holiday season:
- Go shopping with a friend: They say that there’s safety in numbers, and it’s true. Shop with someone you trust, someone who can be held accountable, someone who will check up on you consistently throughout your shopping experience.
- Keep valuables out of sight in your car: Don’t leave anything valuable in sight. If your purse gets too heavy or if you’re just running in for a second and just grab your wallet, make sure to move your bag into the trunk, or tuck it under one of the seats and out of sight. Leaving a Coach bag sitting in your front seat is never a good idea; all a thief would have to do to get that bag is a break a window. Then you’re left with both a mechanic’s bill and without a $300 bag.
- Download and use safety apps, like EmergenSee: Apps like EmergenSee are designed to make you feel like you’re carrying a portable personal security system in your pocket. EmergenSee is a free app; after downloading it, you can set up three personal contacts. If you’re feeling unsafe at any point throughout your shopping experience, open the app and alert your contacts with a live video feed and GPS Location—they’ll get a Google map with a beacon of where you are. During an Incident they’ll be able to follow where you are even if you’re on the move, getting you the help you need.
- Keep your money safe: Be wary when taking cash out of the ATM; make sure no one can see you enter your pin, and make sure to keep your wallet on you at all times.
- Always stay alert: Be aware of your surroundings at all times, especially when walking through parking lot and garages—and especially at night. It’s easy to become distracted while carrying five different bags and trying to remember where you parked in a crowded parking lot, but this leaves you as an easy target. Keep your eyes open, and remember to lock the doors the moment you get into your car.