While you’re gone turn down the phone ringer, check your messages periodically or have someone pick them up so voice mail does not become full.
“Have a trusted friend or neighbor park a car in your driveway, put out your trash bins, bring them back in and just check your property in general,” said Fogata.
If you are traveling outside of the country visit http://travel.state.gov for travel advisory or warnings for that specific country or region you will visit.
Register your visit abroad with the nearest consulate or embassy at Smart Traveler. That way a government official can get a hold of you in an emergency, assist you if you are injured or the victim of a crime or alert you to changes in the country you are visiting that might alter your travel plans.
Avoid airport delays and that confusion at the airport before you go by visiting http://www.cbp.gov/xp/cgov/travel/vacation/kbyg/
Be sure you are well versed on the culture of the country you are visiting to avoid gaffes. Check your health insurance as to its status while you are out of the country in advance so you can buy a supplemental plan if necessary. Ensure that your medication will be available and check with your physician about alternates.
Check what your cell phone and Internet access costs will be before you leave the country. Some options may include a phone card, pre-paid cell phone, or a temporary rental at your arrival destination.
Always-always!-check with your credit card company or bank to make sure your card will work in a foreign country. Refrain from using the debit option in another country.
Fogata said when making a purchase out of state or out of country, “Always check with the retailer on returns, refunds or exchanges. It’s best to shop at a recognized national or international chain or at a business that has a clear policy,” on returns, refunds and exchanges.
Unsolicited fliers left under the door at your hotel is a scam unless it has the hotel name and/or logo. Ask the desk clerk or concierge about such fliers as well as the best places to dine.
“And, when your trip is over and you return to Santa Paula,” Fogata said to notify the police you are back, resume your mail, subscriptions and newspaper delivery, inspect your property for any criminal activity and reactive the power for your garage door while making sure you have removed all exterior locking devices.
“Once you inspect all your billing statements to ensure their accuracy,” Fogata said, “You can relax.... and then get on Facebook or Twitter to post photos and brag about what about a great time you had!”