Julian Bray Aviation and Travel Expert writes:
I'm on BBC 3Counties Radio at 8:05am Monday 18th July with Andy Collins, (also on the ever popular BBC Steve Nolan Show on BBC Radio Foyle and BBC Ulster on Tuesday - after 9:30am) with some family travel safety advice and a discussion on taking holidays SAFELY in Turkey and France.
But for those unable to tune in, here is some of the advice:
Understand that all Cities in every country you visit, will carry an element of risk, we all have to be individually, on our guard, and not rely on others, for our own safety and security. Understand that UK laws and police handling systems do not apply.
Essentially take cash, ideally US$, in addition to credit cards.
Don't leave holiday money foreign exchange until the last minute. Airport 'bureau de change' operations give very poor rates!
Expect to pay on the spot, for any medical emergency assistance, then reclaim back from your insurers in UK. Preserve all invoices and medical reports, they usually bear an additional rubber stamp of the clinic in addition to signatures.
APPLY FOR A FREE EHIC CARD:
Generally, it'll take about seven to 10 days for it to come through (longer for postal applications), though it's worth applying early so you get your EHIC in good time for your holiday.
- You can get an EHIC the following ways:
- Apply on the EHIC website, or find more info on the NHS website.
- Call 0300 330 1350.
- Print the application form from the NHS website, fill it in and post it to: NHS Business Services Authority, European Health Insurance Card, EHIC Applications, Bridge House, 152 Pilgrim Street, Newcastle Upon Tyne, NE1 6SN.
Attend (and listen!) to any welcome briefing by your holiday rep.
Ensure your travel insurance AND MOST IMPORTANTLY medical repatriation (by air) insurance is valid. Remember your existing Home insurance may have some items covered.
Remember much of your holiday beachwear, could be purchased locally at the resort for a fraction of UK retail prices! Also saves luggage weight!
In confined spaces, restaurants, night clubs, theatres, sports grounds. scope out emergency exits and carefully note escape routes.
Stay well away from demonstrations and crowds.
Don't discuss local politics, or post 'witty' comments or 'daring' pictures on social media, FaceTime, Twitter, Snapchat etc.,
Download the SKYPE app. onto your smart phone, as you may need to use it, to contact someone.
Never disrespect local/national flags, or politicians.
Keep bling to a minimum, and ladies cover up in accordance with local custom when visiting holy places.
Gents never place wallets in back pockets, ladies bag strap across your chest and shoulder with arm/elbow firmly over flap of bag.
Advise your bank and credit card company (before you depart) of the countries you are intending to visit. Particularly if you are on a cruiseship , bear in mind your credit/debit card may be activated (if you use the onboard ATM or settle a bar bill ) in Miami Florida at the very same time as you are floating on the Med or ashore in Cannes!)
If the hotel ask to swipe your card at start of your stay they may legitimately 'annex' a portion of your credit in anticipation of a bill being run up! So that materially reduces your available credit limit. IMPORTANT: If you subsequently settle the Hotel bill in cash, ensure they RESTORE your unused credit. Ask them if they have. If you stay at several hotels during your trip, you could well find that all your credit has been reserved even though you've not spent a penny!
Keep several photocopies of the information page of your passport in your suitcases and at hotel reception. Always take your passport with you, as it may be needed to check credit card purchases and in some countries now required to be carried as official ID, as we in the UK we do not have National Identity Cards.
Ensure all members of your party/family have a fully charged up phone with them and ID/ Passports. Know where they are at all times.
If offered contraband or drugs, just don't, the penalties are very severe.
Read and understand, the latest Foreign Office advice to travellers.
Be aware of local conflict and war zones. Ignore travel brochures 'blurb' but look at news reports and a map of the region instead.
Follow world events on the BBC ( outside the UK it is www.bbc.com )
But best of all, simply enjoy your holiday!
More information on: http://julianbrayrecessionbuster07944217476.blogspot.co.uk/
JULIAN BRAY +44(0)1733 345581 Aerospace & Incident Management Expert, Journalist & Broadcaster, Aviation Security & Airline Operations, Travel / Maritime & Cruise Industry, NUJ, EQUITY, LIVE ISDN LINK, Broadcast ISDN COOBE ++44 (0)1733 345020 e&oe Old faithful NOKIA: 07944 217476 www.aviationcomment.com