It is unfortunate, but traveling to many parts of the world has become very dangerous. More and more foreigners are being kidnapped when traveling. This is a serious problem that you cannot afford to take lightly if you are going to be traveling in the near future. No matter your destination you need to do whatever you can to stay safe. Of course, there are some parts of the world, such as the Middle East, that are more dangerous than others.
To start, you should think long and hard about visiting any country in which tourist kidnapping has been common in the past few years. A small list of these countries includes Mexico, Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Egypt, and India among others. This is not to say that you should definitely stay away, but you need to be very careful about planning a trip to any of these locations.
Once you arrive at your destination it is time to take note of what is going on around you. Do you feel comfortable with your surroundings? Is there anything that seems out of place? Remember, everything is not going to be the same as it is in your home country. That being said, you still need to proceed with extreme caution. And yet at the same time, it is important to act like you know where you are and what you are doing. I've practiced this for years in my international travels. I walk with a purpose while looking around for what I need to know. When I do stop to look at signs, maps or guide books, I do it discreetly. Act like you are talking on your cell phone while looking around and reading signs. Stop and fiddle with your bag while you glance around. Anything so you are not just standing there like a lost puppy screaming “take me”. And if I have to unfold a map…well, do it discreetly as possible and try folding it in different ways so it's not as large and obvious.
If you are in a country that is known for tourist kidnappings you need to stick with a guide or stay within a resort at all times. By venturing out on your own you are putting yourself at risk.
With tourist kidnappings becoming more and more common, make sure you are careful about where you travel and how you act upon arriving at your destination.