Do you think about travel security before you head off on a holiday or a business trip?
For many of us, the usual checklist before travel looks something like this:
- Tickets – Check.
- Passport – Check.
- Loud Hawaiian Shirt – Check (despite your partner’s best attempts to ‘lose’ it).
- Emergency Evacuation Plan….???
No too long ago many would have thought this last line was for war zones not the next family getaway!
Unfortunately, as global events show us, whether for business or pleasure, the travel locations we seek have a range of risks that can at best spoil a trip and at worst have a permanent and long lasting impact on our lives.
What follows are some insights to share with you and your family, arising from our work consulting to businesses about travel risk management.
The risks have always been present, what has changed is our awareness of them.
Travel security is as much about ensuring the traveller remains healthy, itineraries are reliable, and accommodation is safe, as the focus on violence and terror.
Even as I write this piece, the media is reporting that coverage provided by ‘free’ travel insurance from premium Credit Cards provide limited or no coverage in the event of a terror attack.
This story highlights the importance of travellers needing to adjust how they plan and conduct their journeys.
No longer should we assume ‘everything will be fine’ and as much scrutiny of our travel insurance is required as our flight options.
In today’s uncertain world these risks cause important questions to be asked.
Can today’s traveller really relax away from home?
This very question arose during a recent interview on The Adelaide Show Podcast, which discussed risk in today’s uncertain world.
As compere, Steve Davis, began pondering where the truly dangerous locations are in the world, he forged this observation, has it got to the point where he can still take his family to the park and other public locations and be safe?
Whilst ancient and historical locations, parts of Syria and Afghanistan, will not be favoured choices for the next family vacation for the foreseeable future, recent events have shown that traditionally popular locations are not immune from violence and terror.
Whether a park or Paris, it is my belief that even a small amount of preparation will go a long way to ensuring a positive and rewarding travel experience.
We spend a great deal of time seeking the best value airfare or hotel room, maybe the same effort should now be spent on areas like insurance and registering for consular support.
How to prepare for optimum travel security?
One image that I try to articulate is that the additional, necessary planning and preparation is represented by having a rope around the waist.
On a day to day basis, it should not impact on the routine aspects of travel. If required, it can be taken up to pull the traveller out of danger.
As an advisor to organisations managing travel risks, there was always a juggling act to getting the right information to the traveller to ensure they were informed, prepared and responsive.
Rather than a mass of paperwork and documentation, please feel free to download and use this simple page of Travel Security Tips to give you and your family, friends, and colleagues, a great starting point for the traveller (whether experienced or novice).
I always advise that if there is any doubt ask and verify.