Imagine this scenario: a crowded club on a beach. Everyone is having a good time, until the revelers return to their hotel rooms-only to discover their driver’s licenses, credit cards and other forms of personal identification are missing.

Spring break is here, and it’s the perfect time for identity thieves to strike unsuspecting victims.

The top nine 2013 for college students, according to STA Travel, are:

1. Daytona Beach, Fla.

2. Cancun, Mexico

3. South Padre Island, Texas

4. Panama City Beach, Fla.

5. Jamaica

6. Miami

7. Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

8. Punta Cana, Dominican Republic

9. Venice Beach, Calif.

Keep in mind so you can enjoy your spring break, and return home relaxed and refreshed-not trying to save your identity. Here are a few tips:

• Keep travel plans to yourself. Don’t spread the news of your impending trip on Facebook or Twitter. If everyone knows you’re out of town, it makes you a target for thieves. Put your mail on hold, and ask a friend to house-sit.

• Pack only the information you’ll need. Cut the number of credit cards you’re carrying to one, and call the card issuer to let them know of your pending travels. Make copies of all pieces of personal information that you will be carrying, and leave that information with a family member or trusted friend.

• Travel smartly. If you’re staying in a hotel, lock everything you don’t need in the hotel safe. And if you’re changing hotels over your spring break, carry your credit card and identifying information in a secure location, like a zippered waist bag.

• Share later. Post the exciting details of your vacation to social networks after you get home. Besides, who wants to waste their vacation time on a computer?

Spring break is meant to be an enjoyable vacation away from the stresses of work and school. Taking steps to protect your personal identity before and during your vacation will help you to arrive back home relaxed and refreshed.

Leave a Reply