From checking in for flights to finding the best restaurants, phones are an essential part of vacation planning. More than 83 percent of people cited phones as an important part of their travel experience in a recent survey by Asurion, the connected life services company.
Indeed, smartphones are critical for travel, and nothing ruins a vacation like a lost, stolen or damaged cellphone, which according to Asurion estimates will impact more than 80 million people this year. Losing access to boarding passes, confirmation numbers or itineraries can instantly downgrade your trip. What's more, Asurion's data shows that 80 percent of issues happen within the first 12 months of phone activation, long before most users satisfy their contracts and while most are still paying off that initial investment.
Avoid the hefty price of a replacement phone and keep your next trip on track with these tips:
Make a mental checklist. When de-boarding a plane or turning in a rental car, take mental inventory of your phone and other possessions to ensure they are not left behind. Better yet, make a list of key possessions to help you run through the checklist.
Get covered. Protect your mobile device while traveling by investing in mobile phone protection. Cell phone insurance not only provides peace of mind but may also save a significant amount of money. With a reasonable deductible far less than manufacturers' retail pricing, cell phone insurance can be very cost effective.
Keep your phone secure. Water-related damage to cell phones is particularly high during travel season, as is damage from phones that are dropped. In fact, the most dangerous holiday for phones is just around the corner. Asurion sees a 66 percent spike in claims filed on lost, stolen or damaged phones on Labor Day, a popular weekend for travel. If you plan an active trip, especially on the water, find a way to keep your phone safe – someplace other than your pocket, where it can easily slip out. An extra sturdy case is also a good idea for protecting your phone while you travel.
Charge it up. Don't forget to charge your phone completely before leaving home so you have access to all necessary travel data until you reach your destination. And don't forget charging cords and wall plugs, so you can rely on your phone to find local attractions, restaurants and more.
Lock it up. Don't make it easy for thieves and hackers to access the vast amount of information stored on your phone. Use password protection and other security features your phone offers. Also be cautious using public Wi-Fi zones that can make your personal data vulnerable.