In the thick of holiday festivities, your safety is probably the last thing on your mind, but you should be aware of several risks unique to this time of the year. Check out our list of tips below on how to protect yourself, your loved ones and your property this holiday season. Shop safely. When shopping, lock your car doors, close your windows and activate your car alarm or anti-theft device when not in your car. Don't have an anti-theft device? Consider getting one - not only can it help prevent your car from being stolen but it may get you a discount on your car insurance.Use credit card smarts. Keep a record of your credit card numbers in a safe place at home. If your card has been lost or stolen, immediately alert the credit card issuer. And did you know your home insurance may cover the costs of any credit card purchases made as a result of theft? Check your policy or ask your insurance broker or agent for details.Travel wisely. If you're traveling over the holidays, make sure to take the following precautions with respect to your home:
- Ask a neighbour or family member to watch your home and collect your mail, newspaper and flyers
- Use lights on automatic timers, and consider leaving on a TV or radio to make your home seem occupied
- Consider how long you'll be away - most home insurance policies cover vacant homes for a certain period of time, especially in winter
- Check your policy or find out more from your broker or agent.
Be a good host. If you're hosting a party this holiday season, you could be held responsible if a guest injures themselves while at your home - and your home insurance policy may not protect you. Here's what you should know:
- Ensure your home is free of hazards that could endanger your guests
- Have non-alcoholic or low-alcohol drinks on hand
- Serve food throughout the party to help guests slow their alcohol absorption
- Help impaired guests find a safe way home or have them stay the night
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