A Travel Warning Has Been Issued, But You’re Already There2 min read
Just as anything can happen when you’re home, so too can the unexpected occur when you’re traveling in a foreign country. From a sudden outbreak of violent political protests to natural disasters, such as an earthquake or tsunami, events can build over time or strike without warning. And even though most countries release travel alerts or warnings to its citizens planning on visiting the area, we can’t help but wonder, What happens if you’re already there?
Finding yourself in this particular situation can be frightening, especially if you’re unprepared and aren’t sure what to do next. While travel warnings don’t necessarily mean you have to leave the country, you may still be left with unanswered questions, such as how severe is the danger, and whether or not airports, hotels, or even public transportation will be operating—all things a tourist needs to know.
While we hope you never find yourself in this situation, here’s what you should know just in case:
- If a travel warning is issued, the first thing you should do is contact your embassy. Your government will likely be monitoring the situation and execute evacuation plans if necessary. Be mindful that if you are to be evacuated, it will likely be to a safe country and not your home.
- Talk to the local staff at your hotel for updates and background information on the situation. They may know if public facilities will be affected, as well as the threat level to foreign travelers.
- If you have access to the Internet, check your country’s website, tourism boards, and national airlines to see if they have been affected by recent events.
- Be alert and aware of your surroundings. If your country has not called for evacuation and you can continue touring the area, be cautious of crowded tourist destinations and protests that may become violent.
- Blend in and dress down to hide the fact that you’re visiting the country temporarily. This also includes avoiding risky behavior, such as engaging in large public gatherings, such as protests.
- Make sure your important documents are in order, including your passport, plane tickets, personal IDs, and anything else you may need.
- If necessary, try contacting your travel agent to see if you can reschedule your trip or get home if the situation is dangerous.
Have you ever found yourself in a situation like this? Please share your experience with us.