A Friendly Reminder: Plan Ahead & Protect Your Valuables

From your comments and emails, I’ve gathered that many readers are about to visit Hawaii for the first time. So, I thought it would be useful to update and republish this tourist advice that was originally posted in March, 2008.

It’s so easy to get distracted by the beautiful scenery in Hawaii, but you do need to keep your wits about you, even in paradise. Please don’t get me wrong, there’s not going to be a thief perched and ready to pounce on you at every corner. That’s not the case at all! Hawaii is really no different from any other tourist destination in that it has it’s own issues with opportunistic thieves who prey on tourists. Just be careful — even when the scenery distracts you.

Here are some tips to keep your valuables protected:

  1. When sightseeing, try to leave as many valuables as possible locked away in the safe of your hotel room or condo, if you have one. If I don’t have a safe available in my accommodation, I lock valuables in my luggage.
  2. Never, ever let people watch you park the car, open the trunk, place your purse, camera, laptop and other valuables in the trunk and then walk towards the entrance of the ½ day hiking trail, boat ride or whatever. Always hide your stuff before you get to the parking lot, not afterward. (This advice is from Dave’s comment of the original post.)
  3. Be sure that you always lock your rental car. Do not leave anything of value in the car. Take your valuables with you. If you must leave valuables, such as a suitcase, don’t leave them in plain sight. Store them in the trunk before you park at an attraction.
  4. Many rental cars have alarm systems, so make sure you activate the alarm as you leave the car.
  5. One little trick I do is that I try to hide maps and guidebooks if I’m going to be leaving the car for several minutes. I try not to make it too obvious that I’m a tourist.
  6. Carry your valuables with you as much as possible. We always bring a small backpack along with us when we are out sightseeing. We stuff any valuables in the backpack.
  7. Protecting your valuables at the beach can be a bit more tricky. So see, this post: Keeping Your Valuables Safe at the Beach

What additional tips would you add?

  1. This info is incredibly helpful, Sheila — thanks for sharing it! Dave’s comment (#6) is especially clever, as I’m sure I’ve been guilty of this careless behavior more than once…

    1. Melanie – sometimes I write these kind of public service announcement posts to remind myself what not to do. I’m glad you found it useful, too. 🙂

  2. These are great tips, and I hope that travelers pay attention! Hawaii is a great place, but seems that a lot of folks have problems with car break-ins, so the info you provide here is very helpful!

  3. We bought a Seacure waterproof Bum Bag that hold all our gear when we go to the beach. They will hold your phone, camera, cash and more. Made from hi impact resistant material so it can take all the knocks with our damaging our stuff. Waterproof to 3 meters! We found ours on the web http://www.seacurebags.com

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