Preparing for emergencies while overseas may seem like a lot of work, but it’s always wise to be prepared and to be cautious before you head for your trip. After all, the unexpected can happen even if we prepare well, so knowing what to do when an unexpected situation strikes can save you a lot of despair.
Below, we’ll take a look at what you can do before and during your trip, and what to do in the event an emergency situation should take place.
Before: Prepare a Safety Checklist
There are some things you can do to prepare for an unexpected overseas crisis. Having a safety checklist is essential to having a more prepared trip.
• Register with Minister of Foreign Affairs (MFA)
If you travel or live overseas, registering with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and updating your information with them enables the MFA or their overseas contacts to liaise with you in the event of an emergency and provide help.
• Purchase Travel Insurance
Travel insurance should be mandatory for any overseas trip, be it for business or pleasure. Good travel insurance will insure you for the duration of your overseas trip and after it, and could also be the helping hand you need in case you’re not able to travel because of an unexpected crisis.
• Make Copies of Important Documents
To minimise the risk of losing your essential documents permanently while overseas, make copies of them only carry the copies when you’re following your itinerary. In addition, taking photos of them is also a good way of retrieving important information when your original documents are lost or stolen.
During: Mindfulness and Awareness
• Self-Awareness is Essential
When you’re overseas, it’s important to be aware of your location and situation that you are in at all times. Staying calm and mindful of your immediate surroundings is key to preventing injury or harm that can be avoided.
• Inform Your Loved Ones
Keeping someone posted of the new locations that you visit. This could be a family member, relative, or friend. Frequent check-ins with them help them to keep track of where you are, and get help should you suddenly stop checking in.
• Identify Emergency Exits
If you’ve been on a plane or ship, you would certainly be informed of where the emergency exits are. Likewise, knowing where the emergency exits are located in a place you’re visiting or staying can help you leave that area immediately should there be a danger present.
When A Crisis Happens
• Move To Safety Immediately
In the event of a crisis such as a natural disaster, head for safety immediately and do not try to carry any heavy items such as luggage bags with you. Try to stay indoors if it’s the safest option, but if you’re outside, move away from the danger as fast as possible. Additionally, you can head for your country’s embassy and request for help there too.
• Locate Shelter & Supplies
If a natural disaster occurs, it’s highly likely that that essential supplies such as food and water be in shortage. Try to find out where you can stock up on supplies for at least a few days and buy them in bulk. If you have a safe location that you can wait in, bring your supplies there and hold out until help arrives.
• Contact Emergency Services
Travel agencies and travel insurance companies generally provide emergency contact information for services that you may need such as an ambulance or other medical evacuation services. Also, you should know that your travel insurance normally covers any emergency calls that you may need to make, even for international calls.
Planning ahead can make an incredible difference in being prepared for overseas emergencies. Whether you are travelling for business or for leisure, these tips can help to save you should an unexpected worry and hopefully even prevent a crisis from happening.