Safety tips for expats are similar to those for anybody visiting a new city but with some additional suggestions because you are planning a longer-term stay:
Research common travel scams: in most countries there are scams operating with the aim of catching unsuspecting travellers off guard. Everything from fake wi-fi hotspots to broken taxi meters are used to take advantage of unsuspecting visitors. Do your research and keep your wits about you.
Keep valuables to a minimum: only carry a small amount of cash and consider how you are dressing, including accessories. Valuable clothing or jewellery might make you stand out to a pick pocketer.
Don’t be distracted: thieves will sometimes try to distract you with something ‘free’ or by asking you a question. Ignore anything that seems unusual or answer from a distance and keep walking.
Avoid walking alone at night: if you are exploring your new home alone, stick to public places. Avoid isolated paths or laneways and wait for friends or family to visit before you explore quiet parks. At night take legitimate taxis or public transport to avoid walking distances alone.
Blend in: do your best to dress and behave as a local. Walk with purpose and try to avoid behaviour that may make others think you are new, even if you don’t know where you are going. If you want to orientate yourself in a new city, consider taking an organised walking tour with a group. As the saying goes - there is safety in numbers.
Stay in touch with family or friends: ensure your friends and family have contact details for you, particularly if you are moving to a more dangerous location. Make sure they know where you are and have contact details for your employer or someone in your destination country should they become concerned about your safety.
Register at your embassy or consulate: if you are moving overseas for an extended period, it is worth registering with your country’s embassy or consulate so they are aware you are there should something serious happen i.e. natural disaster or terrorist attack.
Watch out for rental scams: if you are planning on renting a property, watch out for scams, particularly in cities where accommodation is at a premium. Be very cautious if you are asked to pay a deposit without seeing the property, the rental for the property seems too good to be true or you are asked to post or wire money.