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> Monday, December 6th, 2010 > Alcohol Awareness > Shopping Safely
Click here to read more Interrobang articles written by Erika Faust
Published: Monday, December 6th, 2010
Bustling malls and stressful situations do not mix. Shop safely this holiday season using these tips provided by London Police Service.
You're at the mall, and there's only one thing on your mind: finding the perfect present. You're focused and driven, but you may not be as aware of your surroundings as you would be during any other trip to the mall.
It's holiday season — a time when safety may be the furthest thing from your mind. Keeping safe doesn't have to distract you from your hunt for the perfect present, but it is something that you need to keep in mind at all times.
The London Police Service has some advice to keep you shopping safely this holiday season:
- Make shopping fun by going with a friend or family member. Crime prevention officer Rob Black advised shopping in a group and designating a meeting spot in case you get lost or separated.
- "Park your vehicle in a well-lit area and look inside the vehicle before entering," advised Black.
- To avoid break-ins, "lock your vehicle and leave personal items and purchases in the trunk or out of sight."
- When shopping, return to your vehicle throughout the day to drop off your purchases and avoid becoming overloaded. Black advised moving your vehicle to another location each time you return. "This gives the thieves that may be watching the impression you have left the area and reduce the chances of your vehicle being targeted."
- Black encouraged shoppers to not be afraid to speak up if something seems weird. "While walking to and from your vehicle, be alert and prepared. Report any suspicious people to security or police immediately."
- "Carry only cash and the credit cards that you need for the day," advised Black. "Whenever possible, use bank machines in visible and active areas during active periods." Keep a close eye on your credit card use online or on your bill, and notify your credit card issuer immediately something seems suspicious.
- Keeping receipts for all items purchased can help you keep track of what you've spent and provide proof of purchase if needed — stores need to take extra precautions during the holidays, too!
- Finally, Black advised to keep a close eye on your personal items. "Never leave personal items, especially purses, unattended in a change room or shopping cart." Keep these items on your person at all times.
Keep these tips in mind when you're braving the malls this holiday season to ensure the best shopping experience possible.