You’ve been waiting for this for a long time, and it’s finally time to go. You’re going on holiday, your bags and suitcases are packed, you’ve patted your pocket which has your passport in it several times just to make sure, and you’re almost out the door. However, have you done the proper research for dealing with emergencies while abroad?
This is an area of concern for many people, but travelers ready and raring to go out into the world, rarely think about. Emergencies while trekking across foreign lands of mystery and wonder, can put a shuddering halt to all proceedings if you don’t know how to react to them. By taking simple precautions and know what your course of actions could or should be in times of peril, could save you time, money and heartache. Overtly worrying about simple problems is far from desirable, but, there are a few simple rules to follow in certain situations.
Image by – Kasey Zickmund
Perhaps the most frightening occurrence that can happen to you while traveling is getting injured or severely harmed. It’s hard to picture it, but you could be in pain and suffering while trying to enjoy your holiday. Realistically, the most common form of a harmful incident in a foreign land is food poisoning, but you can just as easily break a limb or suffer a concussion blunt force trauma injury. If you’re unprepared for likely events such as these, it’s going to take a huge chunk out of your wallet.
You may not speak the language, so keep a medical card showing pre-existing conditions in your wallet, so the doctor or nurse can know straight away what might be impairing you. Also, keep information such as your recent or current medication, blood type, and allergies in your wallet too. If you find you’re low on funds, you can find the cash you need by applying for a short-term loan. The process is done entirely online, and you can be approved immediately. The money will be directly deposited in your bank account, so you can readily pay for any urgent treatments abroad.
Many countries have a reciprocal deal, whereby after they write down your personal details, you can use their health care facilities, but the bill for them will go directly to your government. However, some don’t have this arrangement, and so it’s up to you to have a health insurance program that covers accidents abroad. Travel health insurance is something you should look into and find a plan you think fits your needs. Some countries may want cash upfront before they treat you, therefore you should have an emergency fund in the form of hard cash with you while you travel.
Source – Max Pixel
Passport is lost or stolen
Losing your passport is one the most distressing things you can ever go through. Without it, you cannot board a flight, to go onward with your travels, or be allowed to go back home. It’s one of a kind, and your personal passport if a symbol of your identity. It’s very easy to misplace a passport if you’re in a rush and forget to zip up a bag or pick it up after you’ve laid it down. Equally harrowing, is if you’re robbed. Whether you hotel room gets pillaged, or you’ve been the unfortunate victim of a mugging, having your passport stolen by someone is a race against time.
To guard against this from happening, lock your hotel room properly. Some thieves are clever enough to find a tourist who is noticeably new to the area. They might follow you up to where you’re staying and hang back, waiting for you to leave your room. They might place something in between the door and the doorframe to stop it from completely shutting; thus not needing a key card. Make sure you’re being followed and shut the door with a bit of gusto before you leave. Equally, try and hide your passport somewhere in the room as you should even protect from hotel staff who come into your room for legitimate reasons, such as room service.
If you know your passport has been stolen or is lost, time is of the essence. Report the occurrence immediately to the local authorities. Then if you can phone home to loved ones who may be able to contact the embassy of your country, to let them know who you are, where you’re staying and the current situation. You yourself should go down in person, and meet the staff in the embassy of your nation, that’s in the country you’re visiting. They too, will contact home and see what they can do for you. Simultaneously, you should have reported the loss of your passport to the local police, so that they may start an investigation and work on retrieving it back for you. This means that the airports will also log your stolen passport into their system and hopefully stop anybody from boarding a plane while using it. Don’t give valuable information away, but you should keep your followers on social media up-to-date with what’s going on so that there’s public knowledge of your situation too. This may come in handy if you’re kept for a long time in the country and not allowed to travel back home.
Photo credit – Ivan Bandura
You should check beforehand, but if a country is going through very volatile political turmoil, then you may find yourself trapped and in danger. A political uprising is very rare, but when it occurs, it unleashed a set of very acute circumstances for foreigners. When a government is about to be overthrown, if there are violent clashes in the streets between different factions and government police or army; you must begin to pack your bags as soon as you can. Drop everything you’re doing a look for safe haven either in the embassy of your country or to a government-lead safe zone for tourists.
Always, obey the law of the land, and if there is a curfew set in place and policies by the local authorities, adhere to them to the letter. Do not stay out for a minute longer as times are fragile and even a minute or so over the deadline can get you locked up. Keep up with the news and write down valuable information that affects your situation. Monitor social media websites to get a clearer picture of the news as during very tense situations, a tyrannical government will only allow a state broadcaster to air the news; which will undoubtedly be biased and not showing the whole truth. Your country might also contact you personally and send for your evacuation on a chartered flight.