Sen. Vincent J. Fumo

District Office

1208 Tasker Street
Phila, PA 19148

Harrisburg Office

545 Main Capitol
Hbg, PA 17120



Going Away for a While or on Vacation?

Here's What To Do First:

  • Don't leave a note anywhere announcing your absence and when you will return. Don't have any publicity on your trip.

  • Cancel all deliveries of newspapers, milk, mail (or arrange with someone to pick up these things every day) to prevent accumulation of such items-it is a dead giveaway that no one is home.

  • Install an automatic timer to turn on the bathroom light and another light in the house every evening while you are away.

  • Do not pull the curtains or drapes while you are away-leave the windows the way they always are when you are there.

  • Make sure all windows and doors and other possible points of entry are nailed, screwed or locked.

  • Ask a neighbor to watch the place and perhaps check it daily while you are gone.

  • Notify the police you are leaving and when you are returning; ask them to check the house (or apartment) for you. They do this as a courtesy and will leave you a note advising you of each time they stopped by in your absence. Be sure to tell them when you have returned.

  • Make sure you do not leave tools, ladders, wash, etc., outside the house or garage.

  • Turn the telephone bell or chime down before you leave . . . an unanswered telephone alerts someone that no one is home.

  • Make sure you have arranged to have the grass mowed or snow shoveled while gone . . . this too is a giveaway that no one is home.

  • Do not leave your keys or any form of identification in your car if you have parked it anywhere while away (including if you parked it at an airport parking lot); this is a great place for burglars to learn who isn't in town.


  • Carry very little cash with you when traveling; rely on traveler's checks and selected credit cards.


  • Bring only those valuables with you that you will need on the trip; use hotel safes to store them if staying at a hotel.

  • Make sure your insurance adequately covers theft.

  • Use a traveler's lock for hotel or motel doors.

  • Always keep passports with you when traveling abroad.

  • Consider an alarm for your car and install an auxiliary turn lock.

  • Be careful of anyone flagging you down on the highway and of hitchhikers.

  • Pick up your luggage quickly at airports; pieces not picked up right away are easy marks for theft.

  • Keep luggage and other valuables in the trunk; when stopped at restaurants and other public places, such items inside the car are tempting to thieves.
Campers and Recreation Vehicles:
  • Keep valuables stored out of sight in compartments and keep the curtains closed when your recreation vehicle is parked.

  • Do not keep your recreation vehicle packed and ready to go when it is at your home, even if it is for overnight.

  • Get the best door and window locks possible for the vehicle.

  • Do not stroll off the campsite leaving gear and equipment (or an unlocked vehicle).

  • Permanently install a small security chest or safe inside the recreation vehicle.

  • Chain your recreation vehicle to a tree when possible; also use a "deadball" hitch.

  • Paint a name on your vehicle in large letters and for added security, paint a large identification number or letter combination on the roof.

  • Always carry your vehicle registration and any other identifying data with you (not in the vehicle).

  • Avoid parking along isolated roads . . . other recreation vehicles offer added security in most places.

  • If building a new home, add on a garage that houses the recreation vehicle to provide added security against theft or vandalism.

Back to top

For more information, contact the Office of 
State Senator Vincent J. Fumo

1208 Tasker Street
Philadelphia, PA 19148
(215) 468-3866
2637 East Clearfield Street
Philadelphia, PA 19134
(215) 423-7670
Senate Box 203001
Harrisburg, PA 17120-3001
(717) 787-5661


Copyright 1996 by State Senator Vincent J. Fumo. Copyright is not claimed as to part of the original work prepared by an employee of the Senate of Pennsylvania, or Commonwealth governmental officer or employee as part of that person's official duties. All rights reserved. No part of this transmission may be copied, downloaded, stored, disseminated, transferred, or used, in any forms or by an means, except with State Senator Vincent J. Fumo's prior written permission.


Copyright 2000 Sen. Vincent J. Fumo