Locksmith on Holiday – Travel Security with Children
In my last diary post My Personal “0ff Duty Locksmith” Fact File I mentioned that one of my aspirations is to travel more and spend more time with my family.
I Love To Travel
I love to visit different countries and experience different cultures. In the past, pre children, I have visited places like Morocco, Greece, Australia and have been quite happy to go off the beaten track and haven’t been over cautious. Holiday security hasn’t always been at the fore front of my mind when booking a break away. Now that we have children it puts a slightly different light on things. My kids security and safety is top priority!
At home I know we have the best locks on the street and possibly in Barnet. I can relax in the knowledge that my family are safe. Take me out of that comfort zone and things are a lot less certain. Travelling with children needs to be well planned and considered. Here are the Rough Guides General Tips on Travelling with Children. Also 50 Tips from the Guardian on the the art of travelling with children. Yes 50!
Travel with Kids – Keeping Them Secure
I have realised over the years, since becoming a locksmith and a father, that it is unwise to assume that security measures will be taken wherever I stay. I am always proactive in checking that everything is in order from a security perspective wherever I stay. Security considerations are always a priority for me even when I am off duty.
It may seem excessive but experience has told me that it is necessary. I do relax and enjoy the holiday after my initial security checks!
Botheration in Budapest
One experience in particular was when I visited Hungary with my family. My son was very young only 2 and a half at the time and my daughter was 6. My son has been interested in locks from a very young age, probably because he sees me working with them so often. At 2 he was really inquisitive and loved climbing and checking if he could open handles and locks at every opportunity. He has also always been an early riser and would get up to all sorts in the early hours of the morning. He has been climbing out of his cot from an early age and we have had to be very creative with our efforts to contain him to keep him safe over the past few years. Thankfully he has become slightly less unpredictable recently but it is safe to say there is still never a dull moment with my amazing, inquisitive, adventurous little boy.
We arrived at our hotel in Budapest in the early hours of the morning. The children were very excited and in need of sleep. Not a great combination!
We had a 2 bedroom apartment with a kitchen area on the 4th floor. We both immediately started looking around for anything that our little locksmith in training could get up to and into! We were very concerned when we realised that it would have been easy for him to climb on the window sills and open the double glazed full length windows. This is not something that you would generally come across in the UK (then again you never know!). I called reception and asked for a screwdriver and proceeded to take all the handles off the 6 windows that could be reached. Only then could we go to sleep in the knowledge that the children were safe.
After that we had a really great time in Hungary but I have never forgotten that worrying experience.
We’re All Off to Sunny Spain
This year we will be spending a week at a child friendly hotel in the South of Spain. I have already had a chat with the travel agent who has assured me that the children security and safety standards are high because the hotel is specifically suited to families.
However I will still be making checks when I arrive to make sure;
- The windows can’t be easily opened from inside or outside
- The balcony can’t be easily opened from inside or outside
- The door can’t be easily opened from inside or outside
- I will also check that there are no other safety issues
My view is that it is always necessary to check things over on arrival as you never know if;
- Standards are different in the country
- Security procedures have been overlooked
- Something may be broken and the hotel are unaware
Hotels need to be on top of security but don’t assume they are!
Just something you may want to consider if you are going on a family holiday this year. I’m not trying to make you all paranoid but never make the assumption that everything will be 100%. Do some checks on arrival and then you can enjoy some stress free relaxation. If there is anything you would like to ask me in relation to holiday security for children please feel free to ask. I am happy to offer advice on anything related to security.
We are a family run business and having seen many security emergencies involving children over the years it always strikes a chord with me on a personal level. As an emergency locksmith on call 24 hours emergencies involving children are always prioritised.
Here is my Guide to Home safety for Children with a view to keeping children safe within in the home. You may also like these safety tips for kids which help with explaining how to deal with an intruder situation in a child friendly way – Meet Security Sue!
Wishing you a wonderful summer holiday whatever your plans are. You may want to read our Guide on How to Protect your Home When on Holiday before you leave.
Martin (The North London Locksmith)