New Orleans does not have a reputation of being the safest city in the world. And there have been incidents in the past when Microsoft has had a convention there. So we want to make sure you use caution. Here are 10 safety tips for the city:
10. Never walk alone, stay in large groups
9. Do not stand out from the crowd (try to blend in with the other 11,000 Dynamics users)
8. Keep out of dark, secluded areas
7. Do not walk on side roads, stay within tourist areas
6. Do not carry large amounts of cash, avoid looking ‘rich’, leave fancy jewelry at home. Don’t flash those fancy electronics either.
5. Don’t carry large purses, protect your wallet.
4. Plans your steps before leaving hotel, prevent looking like you don’t know where to go
3. Taxis are cheap, take them at night
2. If anyone tries to stop you and converse with you, avoid them and keep walking – they are most likely ‘street scammers’ (one of the most famous lines is “I bet I can tell you where you got those shoes from”. They will try to polish your shoes then demand money).
1. TAKE OFF YOUR CONVERGENCE BADGE – nothing yells tourist like a sign around your neck with your name on it.
Some good advice from a New Orleans local: “Travel in groups and stay in well-lit areas. Like any metropolitan area, New Orleans has areas that aren’t as safe as others. A more light-hearted tip – it is common for the scammers downtown to bet they can tell you where you got your shoes. The correct answer is, “I got them on my feet.” Don’t fall for it!”
And the very best, from a New Orleans policeman, “do not go to Bourbon Street. bars, get wasted, then lose your group”. Enough said.
Enjoy your trip – and have a safe Convergence!
By Anya Ciecierski, CAL Business Solutions, www.calszone.com