Traveling to another country is always an exciting opportunity and if you ever find yourself travelling to a country that is considered unsafe this article is for you.
Stay updated, on what’s going in the country and the region, before and during your stay abroad. Check travel advisories and governmental websites, such as the US Department of State. These sites are a good place to start since they give you a broad overview of a country. Next do research based on what you want to do during your stay, look up the area or activity you plan on doing. Avoiding areas that are considered dangerous is the best way to stay safe. Read the news from as many sources as possible, Al Jazeera, BBC, CNN, there are plenty of options.
Prepare for Your Stay
When in your host county it is important to always carry identification and some money, take an old id and carry a limited amount of cash in an old wallet. If you lose the wallet it’s not a big deal since you still have your passport and credit cards in a safe location. Clothing choices vary depending on what you plan to do but it’s always wise to pack clothes to stay warm and dry. Don’t forget to check the recommended vaccinations and if you have medication make sure you can safely take it with you. If you feel like you are forgetting something use this checklist to double check.
Makes sure as many people as possible know where you are and when. The more information they have, the better prepared they will be in the event something goes wrong. Additionally, before you travel, make sure you’ll be able to maintain communication, whether it’s through the internet or a phone. If you are staying a long time you can always buy and activate a burner phone from your host country. Learn and practice some common phrases if you don’t know the language. It doesn’t need to be extensive, just enough to ask for directions and help. Even if you know the language there will be some things you don’t understand, so look up some common expressions you might be surprised by the differences.
If you’re coming from a western country, don’t dress to advertise that you are in fact coming from a western country. While there are a variety of fashion clichés associated with tourists, it’s a good idea to avoid clothes that make you stand out. Go for the neutral brands and avoid wearing expensive clothing during a casual outing. Wearing jewelry, could attract negative attentions particularly gold or diamonds. Keep valuables close to you and out of sight like camera equipment or smartphones. Keep them well contained in a shoulder bag or a secure backpack.
Find the embassy
Know where your country’s embassy is located relative to where you’ll be staying. Keep the pertinent contact information on you (along with your passport and other identification paperwork) in the event you need to get a hold of the embassy. Whether you lost your passport or if you had some trouble with local authorities, the embassy is there to help you, don’t be afraid to contact them.