1. How To Be a Tourist Without Looking Like One
Avoid attention-grabbing attire; dress conservatively. Don't wear expensive-looking jewelry; avoid displays of affluence. A flashy wardrobe or one that is too casual can mark you as a tourist.
2. Be a Safe Packer
Simply put, travel light. You can move more quickly and will be more likely to have a free hand. You will also be less likely to set your luggage down, leaving it unattended.
3. How To Deter a Pickpocket
When you have to carry passports, cash, credit cards etc., conceal them in several places rather than putting them all in one place. Avoid handbags, fanny packs and outside pockets that are easy targets for thieves. Beware of groups who create a distraction while picking your pocket. Be careful in crowded places: subways, train stations, elevators, tourist sites, etc.
4. Ensure You Will See the Sights
If you wear glasses, pack an extra pair. Bring them and any medicines you need in your carry-on luggage.
5. Avoid Trouble at Customs
Keep medicines in their original, labeled containers. Bring copies of your prescriptions and the generic names for the drugs. If a medication is unusual or contains narcotics, carry a letter from your doctor attesting to your need to take the drug. If you have any doubt about the legality of carrying a certain drug into a country, consult the embassy or consulate of that country first.
6. A Picture Could Be Worth More Than Words
Pack an extra set of passport photos along with a photocopy of your passport information page to make replacement of your passport easier in the event it is lost or stolen.
7. For the Things Money Can't Buy
Bring travelers checks and one or two major credit cards instead of cash.
8. Some Things You Can Leave Behind
Leave a copy of your itinerary with family or friends at home in case they need to contact you in an emergency. Also leave photocopies of your passport identification page, airline tickets, drivers license, and the credit cards that you plan to bring with you.
9. Need Assistance? The U.S. Embassy Can Be a Friend
If you plan to stay more than two weeks in one place: register with the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate through the State Department's travel registration website at https://travelregistration.state.gov. Registration will make your presence and whereabouts known if it is necessary to contact you in an emergency.
10. Do Your Homework
Learn a few phrases in the local language so you can navigate around more easily and can signal your need for help.
Research ahead of time: The Department of State's Consular Information Sheets are available for every country of the world. They describe entry requirements, currency regulations, unusual health conditions, the crime and security situation, political disturbances, areas of instability, and special information about driving and road conditions. They also provide addresses and emergency telephone numbers for U.S. embassies and consulates.