Monday, March 28, 2016 - 08:27

There are some common sense rules that are often broken leading to injury and or death. For some reason people are more likely to break these rules and increase their risk, whilst on holiday, than they would when at home…why? An impulse to be more adventurous when on holiday seems to be the main reason. People are there to have fun, enjoy themselves and relax but this is no reason to let your guard down or dismiss your gut instinct that something maybe dangerous. If anything you should be warier in an unfamiliar environment.

Your sense of security has been built up over time living in a relatively safe environment, heavily regulated with high safety standards and heavy penalties for businesses operators who break the rules. Well this isn’t always the case overseas and certainly not in Bali and Thailand. Don’t get me wrong, both are beautiful places with many wonderful people but a lot of these people rely on you for their livelihood and attracting you and the tourist dollar is their first priority. Unfortunately, safety is second.

If you’re after adventure, seek out the reputable businesses with safety standards. They are often a little dearer but for good reason, their equipment,staff and training costs money.

So a few Golden Rules;

  1. Always, always carry some form of identification on you. Personal identification such as nationality, description age etc, important medical information including allergies, Insurance details with contact details and policy number, next of kin contacts, travel buddy contacts, place of stay eg hotel. Just imagine if you knocked your head and are unconscious, consider what you would need to get you correct medical care.
  2. Always get your travel insurance organised well in advance and read your policy, check that it covers your activities. A few examples of where people get caught are activities such as jet skiing, scuba diving, abseiling, motorbikes/scooters.Do some homework, even checking what size scooter you are covered for if that’s part of your travel plan.
  3. One of the biggest causes of accidents in Bali and Thailand is Scootering. It’s great fun riding around an island with a real feeling of freedom, however it is one of the most dangerous, why? Inexperience and not being familiar with the roads. Many tourists choose to ride a scooter on holidays but have never ridden before, this I would strongly advise against. If you’re not game to ride in your own country, don’t do it in unfamiliar one.

    And if you are going to ride a scooter, the same common sense rules apply:

    • be qualified or at least have an international licence
    • don’t drink alcohol and ride Scooters
    • wear a good quality helmet not just the cheap one often handed out at the rental shops. If you are going to hire, then pay a bit extra and find a dealer with proper helmets that aren’t just a legal accessory.
    • stick with the speed and flow of local traffic
    • no sudden weaving, you’ll be very likely to be taken out by a faster moving scooter or worse
    • keep to the left
    • don’t ride in the wet unless necessary; but hey you’re in Bali, pull up and chill out somewhere. Chat to the locals - I have made some great friends whilst I have been stuck someshere waiting for the rain to stop.
  4. Don’t be fooled in giving your passport as security to anyone. Only allow them to take a copy and this should be done in front of you.

Now I’ve focused on Scootering here due to this is one of the main causes of death and serious injury, but you need to apply the same basic rules to most of what you do. Stick to what you feel comfortable with, research the companies you’re about to book, get in touch with groups, Facebook etc. and ask for recommendations.

Your best holiday is always the one you return home from without injury.