Though many of us plan to turn to online shopping to complete our holiday purchases, it’s still hard to pull off without at least one trip to the mall, or favorite local shops. To stay safe, here are a few tips to keep in mind when you’re out and about.
Take only what’s needed. Leave the purse at home if you can, and bring only keys, phone and a means to pay. Keep your credit card and cash in your front pocket to make it more difficult for pickpockets in crowded spaces to swipe.
Safe parking. Shopping during daylight hours is probably safer, especially when you’re heading out to the parking lot with your bags of gifts. But night shopping, especially with the season's shorter daylight hours and hectic work schedules, is a necessity for most. Park your car in a well-lit area as close to the entrance as possible.
Stay aware. No matter how stressed or rushed you may feel, take a breath and pay attention to your surroundings.
Safe return. Before heading out to your car, have your keys ready. You won’t want to set your purse or packages on top of your car to fumble around for them. If you feel unsafe walking alone in the parking facilities, request a security guard to escort you.
Slow down. Whether entering or exiting crowded parking lots or ramps, cars can pull out suddenly and people can appear from seemingly nowhere. Slow down and minimize distractions in the car to give your driving your full attention.
Smart storage. It’s best to head straight for home after your shopping trip, but that’s not always practical. If you have more errands on your list, be conscious of where you store your gifts in your vehicle. If possible, clear room in your trunk and don’t leave gifts or large items on your front seat.
Up next, tips for shipping holiday packages.