Print Blog Article

Staying Safe on Your Summer Holiday to Europe

Sun, Jul. 30, 2017 Posted: 04:15 AM


Summer is the perfect time for new adventures. Going to Europe may be one of the most interesting ways to spend a vacation, and it could definitely be an amazing experience. With so many incredible places filled with art, history, and many fun activities, Europe is the embodiment of the perfect destination. But if you’re planning your dream trip, you should also be aware of the potential dangers that you may be confronted with. Here are some of the ways in which you can stay safe while experiencing the wonders of Europe:

Be aware of potential terrorism

We are all aware of the many terrorist attacks that took place in Europe recently and in the past years. When choosing your destination, you should make sure that your decision is well-informed and that you understand the level of threat that was established for your destination. Places like France, UK, Belgium, Germany or Turkey are some of the countries that are high on the list of experiencing potential threats. But instead of being afraid, you should make an informed decision and understand the ways you can stay safe. You may want to join Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP), which allows you to enroll your trip with the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate.

Understand the political climate and maintain personal safety

When going to a foreign country, you should always make sure that you understand the current political issues that affect the population. This will help you be prepared in case of any events such as protests or civil unrest. A basic knowledge about the country’s foreign policy, their stand on immigration and other general issues is something that will help you understand more about the place you’re visiting. You should also protect yourself from crime and exercise good measures to ensure your personal safety: don’t walk alone at night, keep your bags closed and stay in well-lit, crowded areas.

Don’t let yourself be ripped off

Being a tourist can be difficult at times. Visiting a foreign country means that there are many things you are not familiar with, from the language to how things work. Some sellers, taxi drivers or even some home owners that rent their place can be less than honest and might try ripping you off. Make sure to check the fares and prices, and when it comes to using a taxi, make sure you know where you’re going and it’s also good if you are using a GPS app that will show you the route to your destination, making it easier for you to negotiate the fare. When possible, use the information provided by locals when it comes to finding the best services for your needs.

Prevent food poisoning

A new place is filled with all kinds of experiences and you will definitely be tempted by new, fascinating food. But preventing food poisoning is vital in order to have a great holiday. There are a few simple things you can do in order to reduce the risk of food poisoning: the basic – always washing fruits and vegetables, even if the bag says pre-washed, adding lots of vinegar or lemon juice to meat marinade, cooking meat thoroughly in order to make it as safe as possible and always check food packaging, including frozen or canned goods.

Get travel insurance and find out the emergency contacts

Feeling safe starts with a good travel plan. Travel insurance is a great way to cover medical expenses, trip cancellations or lost luggage. It’s important to have such insurance in order to plan and enjoy a safe trip. Don’t forget about holiday claims in case of sickness or accidents. Another thing nobody should forget about is learning all the emergency contacts (ambulance, police, fire department) once you reach your destination.

Let people know where you are

There is a simple thing you can do even before you go on your trip – informing friends and family about your itinerary. This way you know for sure that there is somebody back home that can keep track of where you are and they can also keep an eye on any upcoming changes. Just make sure they can reach you while you’re away, by purchasing a local SIM card or even renting a phone.

Traveling is a way of knowing interesting people and exploring the beautiful world we live in. That is why it’s up to each and every one of us to make sure that we experience a new place or a new country in a safe and practical way.

George Smith