Heading out to the mall with your friends is a bit of a rite of passage. Kids across the country look forward to the day when parents will allow them to walk alone in the mall and it is always tough for parents to let go. The reasons for this are legit, however. The danger posed to you when you are off on your own is not something you want to take lightly. Fortunately, you can offset these dangers by following some basic rules of safety.
Know and Follow the Mall’s Rules
Some malls have strict regulations in place that prevent kids from coming alone to the mall before a certain age. The malls adopt these rules for your own safety and it is vital that you follow them. If the mall only allows you to visit at certain times or with an adult, there is a good reason for it.
Be Aware of Your Surroundings
Strangers are still the primary threat that you face when out on your own as a teenager. The old rules of “stranger danger” still apply. Make sure you stay aware of who is around you and where security stations are. If you are ever being followed or harassed in any way, be sure to have a security guard on notice about it. If you are driving and have to go out to your car, make certain you listen to your gut. Look around and if you feel unsafe, speak to a security guard to see you out.
Keep Your Purse Tucked In
Pickpockets hang out at the mall looking for dangling purses and they see them as opportunity. If you keep your purse tucked tightly to your side, you will not have to worry about this as a rule. If someone does try to steal your purse or bags, don’t fight them. Your safety is far more important than those bags.
Handle Money Safely and Responsibly
Be aware of who is around when you are paying for things and never take out your money out in the mall. Criminals look for opportunity and a wad of cash could be all the motivation they need to try something. Be private about your affairs and never share your pin or debit card with anyone. Discretion is your best friends when you are at the mall as a teen.
Don’t Follow the Crowd
The vast majority of trouble that teens run into at the mall stem from really bad decisions. Perhaps a friend decides to steal something and asks for your help. Maybe a group tries to talk you into a ridiculous prank that ends up hurting you or someone else. Shoplifting is a hobby to some teens and one that will land you in jail. Be a leader and not a follower where these things are concerned. Don’t let anyone lead you into dangerous situations of any kind. Stay far away from these types.