More Americans than ever on record – 115.6 million – will travel this holiday season (Saturday, Dec. 21 through Wednesday, Jan. 1). That’s the most in nearly 20 years since AAA began tracking holiday travel. If you’re one of those people hitting the road this holiday season, it’s important that you plan ahead — not just for travel, but to keep your personal property secure as well.
LOCK IT UP!
Prevention is key when it comes to protecting your belongings from getting in the wrong hands. You might be excited to be heading home for the holidays, but make sure you start your trip off right by LOCKING your door. Also, be sure to leave attractive items out of plain sight. Burglars frequently target cash, bikes, jewelry, laptops, and other electronics — if possible, store them in a locked drawer, closet, or interior room. Better yet, take small valuables with when you leave. Here are some other tips to consider:
- Close your curtains and shades and set a timer for lamps.
- Temporarily stop mail and newspaper delivery.
- Let your landlord, property owner, or co-worker know how long you’ll be gone and how you can be reached in the event of a problem.
- Record serial numbers for expensive items, cameras, bicycles, etc.
- To help prevent the risk of accidental fire, make sure to unplug large electrical appliances, including computers, stereos, or microwaves.
With winter weather in the forecast, it’s important to not only drive with caution but also plan ahead by reviewing road conditions before you start your journey. Check out 511 — a great online travel resource run by the Wisconsin Department of Transportation. In addition, you can also download the 511 app from your favorite app store.
Consider the following tips as you make your way home for the holiday:
- Always have a full tank of fuel in your vehicle.
- Carry an emergency kit with you in your vehicle – it should include items like a first aid kit, a blanket, jumper cables, a shovel, a change of clothes, etc.
- Be sure to have extra, warm clothes in your vehicle in the event you’re stranded due to vehicle breakdowns, poor road conditions, or any unforeseen issues.
- Let others know when you leave and/or when to expect your arrival at your destination.
- Have your cell phone with you, and don’t forget the charger! Consider carrying an extra cell phone battery with you.
- Finally, don’t push it. If it’s too dangerous to drive — don’t.
From all of us at UWPD, we wish you a happy and safe holiday season — we’ll see you in 2020!