Unfortunately, life’s little mishaps don’t get put on hold just because you are on holiday. You may not like to think about it, but the fact is, all manner of emergencies can strike at the drop of a hat while travelling overseas – from lost luggage and unforeseen medical treatments to extreme weather events. Being in an unfamiliar environment, not necessarily having a grasp of the local language, and lacking the support network of family and friends can make handling unexpected mishaps even more challenging. However, there are many resources and support services available to assist you in the unlikely event of an emergency; it’s just a matter of doing your research, being prepared, and knowing who to call on when you need help.
Follow these tips for the best defence against pesky travel curveballs:
1. Don’t leave home without travel insurance
Travel insurance is equally as important as your passport when travelling overseas; it’s your best protection against unforeseen events and financial loss.
- It’s important to do your due diligence in reading the fine print on your travel insurance. You should ensure you are covered for the loss, theft or damage to luggage and belongings; any overseas medical or hospital expenses; cancellation or change fees; and rental vehicle excess for damage or theft.
2. Create a contingency plan
- Do your research when it comes to your travel destinations. Follow DFAT country advice and register your itinerary in case you need to be contacted by authorities in the event of an emergency.
- Compile a list of emergency contacts such as police stations, hospitals, and consulates in your destinations, and always carry travel insurance documentation.
- Take additional copies of your passport, ID, bank cards, and itinerary to store in the hotel safe.
3. Be COVID prepared
- While we are slowly seeing a rebound in international travel, it is still important to be aware of the ongoing risks of COVID-19 outbreaks, including the potential emergence of new variants of concern. Don’t get caught out if there is a reimposition of travel restrictions and health measures.
- Be prepared to stay longer in a particular destination and for your return home to be delayed if you happen to contract COVID-19 on your travels.
- Check out our Geek’s Guide on how to safeguard against outbreaks while overseas.
4. Stay calm and seek help
- Ensure you attend to your own safety and wellbeing first to enable you to calmly care for family members and other travel companions.
- Depending on the emergency, contact the relevant local services or authorities, whether that be at a police station, hospital, or the nearest Australian embassy or consulate.
- Follow the advice of local emergency services.
- Contact your travel insurance provider and keep a record of all receipts and police/medical reports so that you can make a claim when you arrive home.
- Contact friends and family with updates on your situation.
You might consider yourself invincible, but here at Airfare Geeks, we know that sometimes the unexpected happens, which is why you can contact us night or day on our 24hr emergency assistance line. You can trust your Airfare Geek to book you the best round the world flights and get you home safe and sound!
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