Six Tips for Safer Shopping at the Mall

Las Vegas shopping venues offer beauty and a variety of products <br><em>Photo by John Robert Taylor</em>
Las Vegas shopping venues offer
beauty and a variety of products to purchase
Photo by John Robert Taylor

Shopping is lots of fun and Las Vegas has a variety of terrific shopping locations. However, property loss or a violent attack can really put a damper on it. The vast majority of violent crime victims are consumers. Criminals consider malls, stores, and parking lots filled with shoppers, to be target-rich environments. Here’s six tips to make you a safer shopper.

Change it up. Never shop routinely, switch things up a little. Vary shopping times, try different venues, differ parking locations, and if possible shop on different days of the week. Potential predators will not have time to prepare for an attack against you. If they know your routine, they may know when and where you are most vulnerable.

If you are shopping and have the need to pack some items into your vehicle and return for something more, you might want to move your vehicle to another parking lot within the same complex or circle around the property and return. This may sound silly but someone considering you for victimization has just lost his or her chance. In addition, you may find a spot closer to the next store you plan to visit.

Consider what you need. Prior to going shopping, consider what you need ahead of time. Don’t carry plastic currency or a huge wad of cash you don’t plan to spend. A fat wallet and/or a wallet filled plastic, attracts a lot of attention.

The parking lot is a danger zone. Prepare for your exit prior to arriving to the parking lot. You don’t want to have your head down, looking for items you are going to carry in inside while sitting in a parking space. Pack everything at home or at some red lights (if any) while traveling to your shopping location. When parking, choose a proper balance between visibility and proximity. You don’t want to park up front if its between two vans with dark windows and you don’t want to park 200 yards from the entrance. It doesn’t have to be a full sprint but parking should be brief and smooth. Enter the space, shut down your vehicle, get out and move towards the door as you arm the alarm system. Someone on the move, even slowly, is less prone to attack than someone that conveniently provides the criminal with concealment and a method of escape…a vehicle.

Groups are better. Criminals are practical. They will choose the surest thing they can find and that is rarely two or more people. Most individuals attacked before or after shopping, are alone. If it’s possible shop with friends. This will greatly improve your shopping experience. A group can watch out for you and comment when you are about to buy an ugly outfit.

A poor guy waits impatiently for his wife<br><em>Photo by John Robert Taylor<em>
A poor guy waits impatiently for his wife
Photo by John Robert Taylor

“Tail check” and situate at the exit. Prior to your exit into the parking lot after shopping, take a stop at the door and look around while situating your bags and placing your keys in your hand. This will speed up your vehicle entry and exit from the parking lot. The keys can also double as defensive weapons. You don’t need absolute proof to consider someone dangerous. A “bad feeling” is enough to wait until they leave or ask the staff for an escort to your vehicle.

Attire properly. If you are with a group, this tip may be less applicable. If you are alone, attire should definitely be a consideration. Las Vegas has many fancy shopping venues and lots of individuals get dressed nicely prior to shopping. An attacker prefers someone with diminished abilities towards resistance or flight. If alone, try to avoid clothing that will restrict your ability run or fight.

Las Vegas shopping locations are filled with quality products and variety. A few crime prevention techniques can amplify consumer safety while increasing practicality and convenience at shopping locations.


2 responses on “Six Tips for Safer Shopping at the Mall

  1. It’s a good thing that you’re not looking for freelance security work at the local malls — the public relations personnel might have a stroke reading this… (Actually, I know that unlike many departments around the country, active Metro officers are unable to seek part-time work as paid security)…

    Good tips — What I like about this series is that it reminds us to think about these scenarios and adjust our own internal mental awareness to be more location-savvy when we are out and about.


Comments are closed.