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5 Pre-Trip Travel Tips That Will Keep You Safe


World affairs can be volatile. They can change quickly. Whether you are travelling for leisure or for business, planning and preparing for your onward travel are very important. 

Having a robust pre-departure travel checklist alleviates any safety and security concerns you may have. To assist you, we have compiled a pre-trip checklist that will keep you safe when travelling:

  • Review entry requirements 
  • Check the medical and security risks in location 
  • Get insured
  • Contact your assistance provider
  • Download assistance app 

1. Review entry requirements

If you are vaccinated or not, the guidance with vary per location. For instance, a copy of your COVID-19 vaccination status would likely be required. Moreover, you may also be asked for other vaccination records like Rabies and Malaria for example.

Wherever you are travelling to, it is important to take the appropriate steps to ensure you meet entry requirements.  We recommend you use relevant government websites on your destination or home country to obtain up-to-date information related to visa requirements and COVID-19 testing.

2. Check medical and security risks in location

Even low risk environments pose potential new health and security threats unfamiliar to common travellers.  Changes in social, economic, and environmental factors could quickly impact the safety of a location.

In the United Kingdom for instance, you can obtain travel advice from the Foreign Office website. In the United States, from the Department of State. US citizens can also register their trip with the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate through the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP). Also, you may be able to obtain travel advice in your mother language by consulting your home country’s ministry of foreign affairs. 

Whichever government portal you use, it will provide travel advice accordingly in your country of choice.

3. Get insured

Securing travel insurance is essential. It protects you against unforeseen events that may occur during your travels. For example:

  • Cancelling or cutting your trip short for reasons beyond your control
  • Missed transport or delays beyond your control
  • Medical emergencies
  • Personal injury and death
  • Lost, stolen, or damaged items (e.g. Baggage, passports, money, and electric devices)
  • Accidental damage or injury caused by you

If you are a business traveller risk management and insurance are essentials to your safety and security. Ensure your employer has the appropriate policies in place, and that travel risks have been mitigated. 

airport waiting area

4. Contact your assistance provider

If your organisation has an assistance provider, you may be required to call and speak with their health and security experts before travelling. This will provide a breadth of location-specific information and advice which instil greater confident ahead of your trip.

You can further mitigate risk to your employees and organisation with access to an unsurpassed evacuation service through our Workforce Resilience subscription.

5. Download an assistance app

Before embarking on your trip, make sure to download your assistance provider’s app onto your mobile devices.  Doing so with give you access to ‘on-the-go’ information, advice or support.

Our Assistance App is the ideal tool for this. It informs and keeps you updated with the latest health and security advice.

Additional considerations

Although we have highlighted 5 pre-travel tips, you may also want to consider other risk mitigation approaches before your journey:

  • Locate your country’s Embassy and/or Consulate and keep their contact number.

  • Research your destination to become familiar, even if you have visited the location before
  • Make a copy of your identification documents, including passport, resident pass, and drivers’ licence
  • Find out whether the country accepts digital transactions, cash transactions or both
  • Keep your colleagues, friends and family updated

How we can support you

International SOS has been at the forefront of supporting travel risk management plans for over 35 years. Whether you are returning to travel for business, a family trip, or studying/teaching abroad, our network of 12,000 health and security professionals can assist with your pre-travel plans.