What to do in an emergency abroad

  • 24 Mar, 2020
  • Luc Horncastle
  • No Comments

Emergency abroad

Regardless of whether you are in the planning stage of your holiday or jetting off next week, it is important to plan fully in order to prevent or rectify and emergency abroad.

Should you be lapping up the sun in Europe, sightseeing in America or taking on the snow in Andorra, there are certain situations you should be aware of and know how to handle before you leave, just in case any of the following unplanned events occur.

What to do if your passport is stolen/lost?

It is important to report your loss or theft to local authorities e.g police. A report could prove useful when trying to obtain replacement travel documents, so it is important to notify authorities as soon as you notice the loss of your items.

While taking necessary precautions to report the loss is important, it is also vital to attempt to obtain replacement documents as quickly as possible.

In the event of losing your passport, you must contact the nearest British Embassy who, in most cases, will be able to issue a new one and you’ll need to fill out an LSO1 form in order to gain a replacement passport. In most instances, emergency documents will cost a fee, and will only be issued during working hours, however in specific circumstances this can be done outside of operating hours.

It’s important to remember that in order to fly back to the UK, emergency documents must be issued for every individual who has lost their documents within your family or group.

Emergency abroad

What to do if you fall ill abroad?

First of all it is important to distinguish how bad your illness is. Remember that a quick trip to the local chemist could save you a lot of time and money while also providing a solution that is generally a lot more simple (over the counter medicine compared to medical bills.) It is important to consider that dependent on where you have travelled in the world, medical practices may vary from culture to culture.

If you fall ill within the accommodation that you are staying in, it is most likely that the hotel / hostel will have a contact number for a local doctor that you can call. For more serious illnesses, it is a good idea to travel with documentation of your condition and medication; the easiest thing to do is to obtain a doctor’s note prior to your trip. This would make the task of someone else understanding your condition much easier.

Equally as important, we suggest that you apply for, and carry, an EHIC card before you set off on your travels. The card, which is free of charge to apply for, entitles you to state-provided healthcare during a temporary stay in another European Economic Area (EEA) country or Switzerland. Remember that an EHIC card is not an alternative to holiday insurance and does not cover costs such as being flown back to the UK or private health care costs. Although with Brexit, the rules of the EHIC cards may change by end of 2020 so make sure you’re stay updated with the latest information.

Emergency abroad

What to do if you you lose your means of money on holiday?

It is important to remember to cancel any credit or debit cards that you lose on holiday immediately, to prevent any, or more, money being taken. The best course of action is to get money transferred to a travelling companion for them to withdraw on your behalf. For solo travellers, travel loan companies such as The Money Team, are available to assist those travellers who do not have access to money from other people. If you are planning on travelling alone, we advise looking into this before you leave; you never know what might happen whilst you’re away and it’s always best to be prepared! If you’re a female solo traveller, check out our helpful guidelines and tips!

What to do if you need to return home immediately from holiday?

One greatly important piece of advice that is relevant to all readers would be that many travel insurance policies will give you money for Curtailment which will provide funds for emergency travel back.

Your first form of action, should you need to cut your trip short, should be to check your insurance documents to see whether your cover protects you for bereavement / ill health / accident etc. Dependent on your cover, you may receive some/all the money for your replacement tickets home.

As we all know, a holiday is to be enjoyed. However it’s important to consider the decisions you make while away; you don’t want anything to potentially ruin your holiday!

Making sure to keep your personal items secure, while also assuring that the activities you take part in are all safe, is vital. It may seem very protective, but it is important to remember those 2 minutes you leave your wallet and money unattended could be the moment they are stolen.

Emergency abroad

Some basic tips for keeping yourself protected would be;

  • To carry a small, safe and secure bag around with you, a waist/hip bag for example.
  • Ensure to the best of your knowledge that the food and drink that you consume is clean is also important.
  • Make sure to research the country you are visiting before you leave.
  • Set travel alerts for the local area so you can stay updated with the relevant news of your surroundings.
  • Finally, be aware of your surroundings at all times, a very vague concept, but bustling city streets are likely targets for theft while less developed areas could have poor water levels which could make you unwell on your travels.

We hope you found this helpful and now you’ll know what to do if you’re ever in an emergency abroad!

About Luc Horncastle

Being a lover of travel myself, it's only fair I help others discover their love for it, too! I cover all things holiday destinations, from where to go on your gap year and which UNESCO sites you need to visit to how to get the most out of your ski trip and what travel trends to keep your eye on.

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