Let me take a moment in this challenge to be serious.
We don’t like to think about it, but it happens. Emergencies arise while on vacation. The best thing you can do is prepare. Here are some tips on things you can do before you leave, and resources for you to bookmark.
If you have more tips, please leave them in the comments.
Purchase Travel Insurance
I can’t recommend a specific policy because ours is via my husband’s company. I am familiar with CSA Travel Insurance and World Nomads, though I haven’t used either personally. (These are not affiliate links, just links to the products for your convenience.)
Do your research for your destination
At the minimum make sure you have the 911 equivalent number for the destinations you’re traveling to. This list provided by the U.S. State Department should help.
Write down the number your country’s nearest consulate or embassy for each city you will be visiting. Note most U.S. embassy websites include contact information for English-speaking doctors in the vicinity. It will be under the section for American Citizen Services.
Read up on any necessary vaccinations, familiarize yourself with the medical process, and general safety tips via the U.S. State Department site.
If anyone in your group has allergies, keep a list of the allergies translated into the language of the country you are visiting. Even if people guarantee that all doctors will speak English where you are visiting, you never know. Trust me. I have 50/50 luck with English speaking doctors in Germany – and I’m in a big city.
Keep a copy with you
To help with this I’ve created a free downloadable pdf to keep track of this information for up to four countries. Print it out for each trip and put it in a safe place.
Now that we’re done being serious, I’d love it if you go and check out my friend Jenny’s blog A Taste of Travel. She’s also participating in the A to Z Challenge, focusing on places off the beaten path. True travel inspiration on her blog. Her selections so far have me wanting to purchase plane tickets, buy insurance, do a little research and fill out the form you hopefully just downloaded.