Spring break is a time to relax, rejuvenate, travel and enjoy time with friends. Being safe over spring break will ensure that your fun is sustained for the week and that you have good memories of your experience. Below are some tips to ensure that your spring break is great!

Travel Tips

  • Travel with someone you know and trust, and preferably with a group.
  • Never allow a member of your group to leave alone with someone they do not know.
  • Always travel in well-lit areas.
  • Lock your hotel/motel room door (keep your keycard in a safe place) and when someone knocks, always look through the peephole before opening the door.
  • Don’t invite strangers to your room.

Drinking and Eating Tips

Be aware of your limits and the signs of alcohol poisoning.

If you do decide to drink:

  • Decide in advance what and how much you will drink.
  • Eat before you drink and during a party.
  • Plan on how you will refuse once you reach your limit of food or alcohol.
  • Drink water in between each alcoholic beverage to slow your drinking as well as keep you hydrated.
  • Watch your drink, alcoholic or not.
  • Know what will happen if you violate state or local laws.
  • Use a designated driver or choose public transportation.
  • Try to eat several normal meals a day –avoid over-eating and under-eating patterns.
  • If you are taking medication find out how it interacts with alcohol.

Should a member of your group become intoxicated, never leave them alone. If they pass out, make sure they sleep on their side to prevent choking, and if their level of consciousness is too low to get a response for more than ten minutes, call 911.

Personal Safety Tips

  • Be smart! Drinking makes it easier for a person to become either the victim or the perpetrator of a sexual assault. Again, know your limit.
  • Don’t allow yourself to be taken to an isolated location.
  • Don’t walk alone. Use the buddy system.
  • Never leave with someone you just met. Attend large parties with friends and plan to leave with the same friends.
  • Don’t leave your drink unattended.
  • Keep your cell phone battery charged and with you at all times. Don’t leave it in a bag or jacket.
  • Keep cash on hand in case you need to call a cab.

Sun, Sand & Surf Tips

Nothing can ruin a week in the sun as much as a sunburn! Even if you have been tanning, the sun in Southern climates is HOT and INTENSE. Prevention is the key here, so follow these tips:

  • Avoid sun exposure during the hottest hours of the sun’s rays.
  • Avoid over exposure – limit your time in the sun.
  • You CAN sunburn even if it is cloudy.
  • Apply sunscreen with a SPF (Sun Protection Factor) of at least 15, paying special attention to the face, nose, ears and shoulders.
  • Re-apply sunscreen after swimming and sweating.
  • Wear a hat.
  • Wear sunglasses with UV (Ultraviolet) Protection.
  • Drink plenty of water, non-carbonated and non-alcoholic drinks, even if you do not feel thirsty.
  • Be aware of Heat Stress Symptoms.

Best wishes for a fun and healthy spring break from the U.Va. Women’s Center! If you have concerns about your spring break experience, please feel free to call us for help before or after (982-2252).

Tips compiled by Counseling Services at the Women’s Center