Holiday Security Reminder

Security Messages and Warnings

The U.S. Embassy would like to remind U.S. citizens of the following security risks and practices throughout the holiday/festive season and beyond. While this information is specific to Gaborone, the same practices and vigilance are worth keeping in mind in other areas of the country as well.

Criminal incidents tend to increase during the pre-holiday and holiday season. Be cautious and extra vigilant as you go about your holiday routine with the kids out of school, attending parties, going on vacation or even just shopping. Criminals are assessing potential targets. Some tips to make it more difficult for them:

  • Carry only essential items with you, and avoid perceived displays of wealth (expensive watches, flashy jewelry, etc.).
  • Avoid walking or jogging alone, even in the daytime.
  • Travel with a companion or group if possible. There is safety in numbers.
  • Keep car windows up and doors locked at all times and be aware of your surroundings, especially at intersections where “smash & grab” incidents are frequent.
  • Do not let passengers travel with purses, briefcases, or electronics visible in their laps while in the car.
  • Do not leave valuables in plain sight while the vehicle is unattended.
  • Be wary of pedestrians approaching your car while you are in traffic.
  • Stay alert when entering or exiting your vehicle or residence.
  • Physically check that your vehicle doors are locked after you depress your remote. Criminals can jam your remote’s signal with electronic devices.
  • Make sure your vehicle is in good operational condition.
  • If something doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t. Remove yourself from the situation and do not confront or investigate further.

You should utilize all residential security features including routine use of deadbolt locks, padlocks, motion detectors, door, window, and fence alarms, and activate central alarm monitoring systems. Dogs kept inside can be a good deterrent, or other loud noise emitting devices such as air horns. Make your home a hard target.

The U.S. Embassy also reminds U.S. citizens to review the Worldwide Caution regarding the continuing threat of terrorist actions and violence against U.S. citizens and interests throughout the world.

The consular section at the U.S. Embassy in Gaborone wishes all of you a safe and happy holiday season.

If you have received this message but are no longer in Botswana and wish to stop receiving email messages from us please follow these instructions:

  • If you registered with the U.S. Embassy in Gaborone using the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) please log into your account and make sure your departure date from Botswana has been entered. The STEP system may not let you “back-date” your departure so to close your trip you should enter today’s date.
  • If you registered with the U.S. Embassy in Gaborone using any other method, please send us an email with your details and request that we close your travel to Botswana manually.