Keeping your kids safe when traveling abroad

Former CIA agent Mike Baker shares helpful advice for children traveling internationally

Be aware (prior to travel) of any existing political or civil unrest or issues. Pay attention while in country in case things go sideway.

Take advantage of available U.S. resources:

Study up - take advantage of information sites run by the Department of State

  1. CIA factbook
  2. The CDC for travel health concerns
  3. The State Department’s Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) at
  4. Identify the locations/contact details for local US Embassies or Consulates…in the event of a robbery or crime, report it immediately to the Embassy or Consulate…in times of trouble overseas they can be an invaluable resource and support mechanism.
  5. Identify the best hospitals/medical facilities where you’ll be traveling…think about what you might do in a medical emergency…how would you notify your family…again, the US Embassy or local Consulate can be very helpful in case of an emergency…
  6. Embassy vs Consulate (Embassy is primary service – 1 in country. Consulates in every city)
  7. Smart Layers: Phone, Where Staying, Register with State Dept., Hospital
  8. Dress appropriately if you are a woman, wear respectful clothing; pay attention to your decorum
  9. Is crime a problem where you’re going?  Study up on current scams…(I can run thru a handful of typical street scams used to target tourists/travelers)
  10. Know what areas/neighborhoods to avoid
  11. Plan/organize their travel… use trusted/vetted car services, avoid random street cabs, don’t accept rides from the airport, avoid local buses and commuter trains
  12. Refrain from displaying personal wealth, looking or acting flashy… you want to blend in, not stand out…
  13. Don’t use ATMs at night or in under-populated areas… don’t carry large amounts of cash
  14. Travel with photocopies of your passport and other vital documents in case of theft
  15. Refrain from displays of wealth; blend in, not stand out
  16. Don’t carry large amounts of cash or use ATMs at night
  17. Travel with photocopies of your passport and other vital documents
  18. Get safe travel information at
  19. Download the CIA Factbook
  20. Register in the Smart Travel Enrollment Program (STEPS);
  21. Locate: U.S. Embassy, Consulate and hospitals/medical facilities
  22. Always let someone know where you are and plan to travel
  23. Visit the U.S. State Dept. travel website to view alerts and warnings
  25. Familiarize yourself with the current environment, culture, and political climate
  26. Locate the nearest American embassy before traveling
  27. Know which neighborhoods to avoid
  28. Don’t look like a tourist; criminals in Mexico and throughout the world, look for the soft targets… don’t make yourself an obvious target.  You want to walk around like you’re aware, not like you’re in a bubble lost in your own thoughts…
  29.  Avoid displays of wealth…avoid ATMS at night…stick to ATMS in the major hotels and banks…
  30. If you are a victim…cooperate in a non confrontational manner and report the crime immediately after to the US Embassy or Consulate.  If one of your travel companions, or a family member is kidnapped, report it immediately to the FBI…
  31.  Specialized “threat assessment” companies can advise your travel plans
  32.  Report kidnapping to the FBI; crimes to the U.S. Embassy then local authorities

Return to Episode Guide >>

    Get more great recipes and crafts by visiting us on Pinterest at and follow "Home & Family" on Twitter @homeandfamilytv and Facebook. Plus, check out our YouTube channel for backstage videos.

How to Start a Garden
How to Start a Garden