Billions of people enjoy the adventure and experience of travelling abroad each year. But even the best-planned holiday can possibly turn into a nightmare. This could be because you have to face a natural disaster, terrorist attack, civil unrest, illness or other emergency situation. Of course, these are worse scenarios. However, there is always the possibility that one may happen. Therefore, it is important that you prepare for your trip in a way that offers you the most security and peace of mind even if the worst should happen. Here are some tips you need to know in an emergency that will allow you to travel abroad safely. We hope they help you when you are planning your trip.
Have The Correct Paperwork
The main thing you need to have, especially in this new post-COVID travel world is the correct paperwork. Therefore, you must ensure that you have a valid passport. It needs to be in date and usually with at least 6 months left on it from your return date. You will need any necessary visas for the country or countries you are visiting. Also, depending on where you plan to visit you may need evidence of your COVID vaccinations i.e. the NHS app. Without the correct paperwork, you are unlikely to be granted entry to your destination.
It is recommended that you make two copies of the identification page of your passport. You should keep one with you. This will help you get a replacement quicker if you lose your passport while travelling. And one to leave with your family or friends at home.
Do Your Research
Take the time to read up on the country or countries you are visiting. Research local customs and laws as they could be very different from the ones in your home country. You do not want to break the law or insult the locals without realising. Also, watch out for travel warnings and advice and consider postponing or relocating your trip if danger is present and you do not feel comfortable visiting.
Tell People Where You Will Be
Leave a copy of your itinerary with your family and friends at home. Include flight numbers, hotels and contact information together with any other plans. Also if you plan to move around and visit several destinations, check in with people back home regularly (call, text, email etc)to keep them up to date on where you are. In the event of an emergency, they’ll have a starting place of where to look.
Be Prepared Medically
Ensure you have a relevant insurance policy in place just in case you need medical attention. This could save you a lot of money. Your insurance company will pay your medical bills (excluding any excess on the policy). It is also recommended that you carry a letter from your doctor describing any pre-existing medical conditions and names of medications. If travelling with medication ensure that it is in its original container with labels. You may also want to take an extra week’s worth of medication with you in the event of an emergency.
Ensure Your Mobile Phone Allows Roaming
Check that your mobile phone has a roaming ability and that you are able to turn it on if travelling. Not all mobile phones have this capability therefore you will not be able to use yours when outside of your home country. You may also want to add on a roaming package/bundle which may cost you extra and will be added to your tariff. However, the initial outlay may be less than using your phone abroad if you do not.
If your phone does not support roaming or you do not wish to add a package/bundle, then buying a local sim card when at your destination is another option. It is a great way to ensure that you are still contactable and are able to contact family and friends in an emergency and keep costs down as much as possible too.
Have Contact Details For Your Nearest Embassy or Consulate
The level of assistance that embassies and consulates offer may differ by country: in some areas of conflict, they can only offer very limited assistance. However, if find yourself involved in a natural disaster i.e. tsunami, hurricane, earthquake etc, it is the embassy or consulate’s job to locate their citizens and help them. Therefore, it is recommended that you carry the contact address and telephone number of the embassies and consulates in the countries you plan to visit should you need them.
We hope these tips help you travel abroad safely!
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