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HEALTH & SAFETY: PROTECTING YOUR VALUABLES

The most common safety issue that Vegas visitors wind up facing is one of simple theft - usually at the hands of pickpockets lured by those wallets bulging with ill-gotten casino gains. But there are ways to reduce this risk as well.

First, and most obvious, is to not carry huge amounts of cash on you. Of course sometimes it can be unavoidable - say, you're lucky enough to win several hundred dollars while out in the casinos for instance. But whether you've got $20 or $2,000 on you, there are ways of keeping it a little safer.

Men should consider carrying their wallets in a front pocket or wearing one with a chain that attaches to the belt buckle. Women should consider not carrying a purse at all or if absolutely necessary, get one with a long enough strap so it can be worn across the body instead of casually slung over your shoulder. While they are not the most fashion-forward statement, fanny packs are also good alternatives although you should make sure to keep them zipped closed whenever not in use.

Be extra vigilant while visiting the city's eye-catching attractions or in the casino. It's much easier for a thief to rob you while you're not paying attention, such as when you're standing there agog over the Bellagio Fountains or pumping money into a slot machine. Take note of strangers who seem to be invading your personal space or seem to be taking more of an interest in you than they should. Pick-pockets and the like will notice you noticing them and will be more likely to move on to someone who isn't paying as much attention.

Theft can also be an issue for items in your room. If your accommodations come with a safe, use it. When you're not in your room, store your cash, cameras, jewelry, laptops, and other tempting goodies in your safe or out of sight in your suitcase. Incidents of housekeeping or other staff taking things from guests are virtually non-existent but why take a chance by leaving an expensive Rolex on the nightstand?

Next: Protecting Yourself

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