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Tech Tips, Communication Tactics Can Help Keep Trick-or-Treaters Safe

Halloween is among the most anticipated holidays of the year. Children and families prepare for months to dress up in a costume, celebrate with their friends and community and collect treats. But for parents, safety is a priority.

Smartphones have a variety of helpful safety features, such as a built-in flashlight, easy access to emergency numbers and contact lists for important numbers and real-time location sharing. Older children and adults can easily have these in their pocket or purse in case it’s needed.

In addition to the safety value a smartphone provides, Lukas Partners client UScellular shares tech tips and communication tactics to keep trick-or-treaters safe on Halloween.

· Research a trick-or-treat plan: Families can use the Nextdoor app to find the best places to trick-or-treat and check neighborhood rules. The app’s Halloween Treat Map allows neighbors to mark their homes if they plan to pass out candy or display decorations.

· Set ground rules and expectations ahead of time: Families can use mobile navigation tools prior to trick-or-treating, such as Google Maps, to establish boundaries and create routes to follow.

· Play it safe: Most smartphones come with the capability of sending an SOS message quickly, whether it’s calling for help, alerting contacts of the user’s location or recording video. Enter In Case of Emergency (ICE) numbers and neighbors’ or grandparents’ numbers on speed dial. Consider downloading Glympse for the evening, an app that allows families and friends to share real-time locations.

· Capture moments: Don’t forget to take pictures of your kids in their costumes. It’s a great way to preserve the moment and post to social media channels, but also a good idea to have a reference of the costume your child is wearing in case they get lost.

· Use location tracking devices: If kids don’t have phones, Safewise offers a list of the best location tracking devices, such as smartwatches, wearable clip-ons and Apple AirTags. Families also can consider using screenless phones, such as Relay, to communicate reliably, so children can safely have independence while giving parents peace of mind. Additionally, Life360 is among the most popular apps to track children. Parents can come together to track a group of friends, as well.

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