Issue #2
Page: 14

Tips for Travelling Safely In the United States

by James Yee

Here are some tips that would provide you a safe tour to the United States:

1) Legal matters. 

* These are the safety measures provided by the U.S. Embassy for tourists.

* Before leaving your own country, you should register with the U.S. Embassy (  Provide them with your itinerary and copies of your passport.  This will ensure that your whereabouts are known in case it is necessary to contact you during emergencies.

* Remember to have a valid passport.  And if your travel requires a visa, your visas should always be intact with the passport.  Go to ESTA for Visas and travel authorisation -  Remember to fill out all your information on the emergency page located inside your passport, or if you have a newer passport (which does not have this page); make sure you keep a contact card located with your passport.

* Be aware of all the local laws of the USA.  Always be reminded that you should abide by the laws of the U.S. Constitution (

* Make multiple copies of the identification page of your passport.  This will assist in the replacement of your passport if it is stolen or lost.

2) Electricity. 

* If you have brought appliances that would make use of electrical systems, be aware of the voltages used with these devices.

* U.S. residential use 115 volts of electrical systems operated at 60 hertz.  If your electric appliances operate on different voltages, you will need a voltage converter or transformer before plugging the appliance.

* The main wall sockets in the U.S. basically make use of 115 volts which looks like two parallel flat blades. Make sure to match the socket with the device by purchasing a converter.

3) Basic Information.

* The official language in the United States of America is English.


* Used as measurements in road signs, temperature displays, and tourist brochures are the imperial and metric system.

* It is customary in the USA to tip for services. Tips average from 10% to 20%, depending on the discretion of the person paying the bill.

4) Safety

* Never leave your luggage unattended in public areas.  Do not accept any package from strangers.

* Prevent wearing eye-catching clothing and priceless jewellery to avoid being a victim of crime.  Do not carry large amounts of money and credit cards.

* Deal with official agents when purchasing art, antiques and exchanging money.  This would help in avoiding the violation of local laws.

* If you suddenly get into trouble, it is best to contact the nearest U.S. Embassy (
Now you know the basics, it's your turn to enjoy your travel legally and safely.  Have fun.


James Yee enjoys travelling and photography.  His useful information on travel is available in

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