Travel Safety Round-Up: 15/8/2017

Looking for extra peace of mind? Start with the latest travel safety information, and make sure you have appropriate travel insurance, including cover for acts of terrorism.

The following is a selection/summary of key updates provided by the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) over the past week:

 

 

Country Date  
Montserrat

14-08-2017 16:35 PM GMT

Money section – most major credit cards are accepted in supermarkets, restaurants and hotels; the local currency is the eastern Caribbean dollar but US dollars are also accepted.

Health section – removal of advice on chikungunya virus.

Sierra Leone

14-08-2017 16:05 PM GMT

There has been widespread flooding on the Freetown peninsula as a result of torrential rain; access to and from Lungi airport by ferry and road isn’t affected; if you’re in the area or planning to travel to Sierra Leone, monitor local news and follow the advice of the local authorities.

India

14-08-2017 15:52 PM GMT

Natural disasters section – heavy monsoon rains continue to affect north Bengal and Assam; trains lines have been affected by flooding, leading to disruption of train services and roadways; if you’re travelling to or in north Bengal or north-east India, monitor the local and international weather updates, follow the advice of local authorities and your travel company

Greece

14-08-2017 13:46 PM GMT

Following an earthquake, repair works continue at Kos port; passenger ferry services are now docking as normal, although cruise ships continue to dock outside of the main harbour.

During the summer months, Greece is prone to forests fires, which are highly dangerous and unpredictable; check with local authorities if you’re considering travelling to affected areas; take care when visiting or driving through woodland areas and report fires to the emergency services on 112

Nepal

14-08-2017 13:33 PM GMT

Recent monsoon rains have caused widespread flooding, leading to displacement of people, injuries and deaths; road and airport closures are also affecting local transport links; you should plan travel in advance and contact your tour operator, the tourist police or the local authorities for further advice.

Bermuda

14-08-2017 11:06 AM GMT

Updates to the Road Travel and Local Laws and Customs sections – you can’t hire a car in Bermuda, but 50cc scooters are readily available for public hire; a small number of 2-person minicars are offered as an alternative to motorcycles in some locations; in 2017 the Supreme Court of Bermuda ruled that same-sex couples have a legal right to marry.

 Burkina Faso

14-08-2017 10:13 AM GMT

Summary & Terrorism sections – on 13 August 2017, gunmen attacked the Aziz Istanbul restaurant in Ouagadougou; the attack is now over following a security operation; you should remain vigilant and follow the advice of the local security authorities and your tour operator.

If you’re concerned about terrorism affecting your travel plans, you can top up your travel insurance to cover terrorism – including disinclination to travel* – from only £4.96 per person**

 Kenya

13-08-2017 19:13 PM GMT

There have been protests in a number of areas since 11 August. Further protests are possible.

 USA

13-08-2017 00:03 AM GMT

Safety and security – A state of emergency has been declared in Virginia, following violent protests in Charlottesville on 12 August 2017; you should monitor local media and follow the instructions of the local authorities.

 British Virgin Islands

12-08-2017 17:52 PM GMT

Safety & Security Section – advise caution when driving following the tropical wave of 7 August.

 Kenya

11-08-2017 21:02 PM GMT

Presidential, parliamentary, county and local elections took place on 8 August 2017; the Electoral Commission announced the results on 11 August; the opposition have disputed the results; there are reports of demonstrations in some areas.

 Peru

11-08-2017 19:16 PM GMT

Strikes are taking place in Cusco, Puno, Arequipa, Iquitos, the historic centre of Lima and other parts of the country. Sometimes they lead to temporary transport disruption.

 Ethiopia

11-08-2017 16:31 PM GMT

Tensions are high on the road between Harar and Babile, in the far east of Ethiopia, after ethnic clashes on 10 August 2017; road travel may be disrupted and if you’re in the area, exercise caution and follow the advice of the local authorities.

 Egypt

11-08-2017 16:26 PM GMT

On 11 August 2017, two trains collided in Alexandria, killing at least 36; you should follow the advice of local security officials; if you’re in Alexandria and you need urgent help call +20 (0)2 27916000 or if you’re in the UK and worried about a British national in Egypt, call 020 7008 1500

 Democratic Republic of the Congo

11-08-2017 16:23 PM GMT

Health section – there’s been an outbreak of cholera in Tanganyika province, you should follow the guidance of the National Health Network and Centre

 Libya

11-08-2017 14:41 PM GMT

Summary and Safety & security sections – local security situations remain fragile; conflict continues in a number of areas including Benghazi, and can break out anywhere without warning; Terrorism section – there’s an elevated risk of kidnap for ransom and arbitrary detention by local militias throughout Libya.

 India

11-08-2017 12:17 PM GMT

Summary and Safety & security section (East and north east India) – there’s an ongoing strike in the Darjeeling hills following clashes between supporters of the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) and police in Darjeeling on 12 June; most hotels remain closed and there’s no public transport in the district; there are occasional violent protests in Darjeeling and Kalimpong, and on roads in the area; if you plan to travel in or through the Darjeeling hills, Sikkim and Cooch Behar district, monitor local media, follow the advice of the local authorities and keep in touch with your travel company.

 Portugal

11-08-2017 10:52 AM GMT

Planned strike action by SATA Air Açores and Air Azores cabin crew from 23 to 26 August 2017 may cause disruption to flights; if you’re travelling with these airlines during this time, check with the airline or your tour operator before you travel.

 Guatemala

10-08-2017 16:05 PM GMT

Safety & security section (Local travel) – new PROATUR contact details (0502) 2290 2810

Health section – if you receive medical treatment, make sure you get confirmation from the hospital administration that your insurance coverage is accepted; in some hospitals the administration may ask you to pay upfront and you may have to claim on your insurance later.

 Moldova

10-08-2017 13:16 PM GMT

Addition of a link to information and travel advice for Wales supporters travelling to Moldova for a FIFA World Cup qualifying match in Chisinau on Tuesday 5 September 2017.

 Mexico

09-08-2017 16:38 PM GMT

Summary and safety and security section – there’s currently an increased police presence in Los Cabos following a shooting incident on Palmilla Beach on 6 August 2017. You should follow the advice of the local authorities and your tour operator; Tropical Storm Franklin is forecast to bring hazardous sea and weather conditions to the states of Campeche, Tabasco and Veracruz from the evening of 9 August 2017; removal of information about the evacuation zone and airport closure in the state of Quintana Roo.

 Thailand 09-08-2017 13:18 PM GMT

Summary and Safety & security section – His Majesty King Bhumibol Adulyadej’s cremation ceremony will take place between 25 and 29 October 2017; during this time there’s likely to be significant disruption to traffic in central Bangkok, especially around the areas of the ceremonies, due to large volumes of people and road closures.

China 09-08-2017 11:26 AM GMT

Summary and natural disasters section – on the evening of 8 August 2017, an earthquake of magnitude 6.5 occurred in north-east Sichuan Province, near to Juizhaigou town and the Jiuzhai Valley National Park. If you’re planning to travel to the affected area, you should check local reports and contact your tour operator for further information.

Cambodia

09-08-2017 09:18 AM GMT

Safety & security section (Crime) – in 2017, there have been incidents of female travellers, including British nationals, being sexually assaulted in Siem Reap and Sihanoukville; you should be vigilant at all times, especially when walking alone.

Entry requirements (Passport validity) – your passport should be valid for a minimum period of 6 months for any subsequent renewal or extension of your visa applied for from within Cambodia

Money section – recent reports of counterfeit dollar notes being given as change in shops and clubs; you should check that any notes received in change are genuine

Pakistan

08-08-2017 16:16 PM GMT

On 7 August 2017, an explosion near Outfall road in the north east of Lahore caused multiple injuries; you should avoid the immediate area of the incident for the time being.

Independence Day will be held on 14 August and large celebrations are expected on and around this date; political rallies may also take place on 14 August in northern Punjab, particularly in Lahore, you should avoid all large crowds and political gatherings.

Entry requirements section (National Identity Cards) – you can enter Pakistan visa free and remain there for an unlimited period of stay if you hold a valid National Identity Card for Overseas Pakistanis (NICOP) or Smart National Identity Card for Overseas Pakistanis (SNICOP)

 Paraguay

08-08-2017 16:11 PM GMT

There have been a number of recent protests in downtown Asuncion; more are expected in the coming days. The protests are in response to several rural organisations’ issues and are focused around government offices in the downtown area. Disruption to road travel in the surrounding area is likely. You should avoid large gatherings, monitor local media and follow the guidance of the local authorities.

Peru

08-08-2017 14:56 PM GMT

Safety & security section (Local travel) – you should be especially alert to the local security situation in the border areas with Ecuador and Colombia; if you’re crossing the Peru-Ecuador border (by land) you should do so at official checkpoints only, as other areas may have unexploded landmines; on the Putumayo river, near the Colombian border, there is drug trafficking and criminal activity, and the potential threat of incursions by armed guerrilla forces; you should exercise extra vigilance in these areas.

 Norway

08-08-2017 13:46 PM GMT

Safety & security section (Road travel) – winter tyres must be used from 1 November to 15 April; you may also need to use studded tyres or snow chains for extra grip in icy conditions when permitted.

 Portugal

08-08-2017 09:09 AM GMT

Planned strike action by Portuguese immigration officers on 24 and 25 August 2017 may cause delays. If you are travelling on these days, allow for additional time to clear border controls when entering and exiting Portugal.

     

Remember that this information is subject to change at any time, so it’s a good idea to check the FCO website and local news for your travel route and destination before you book – and before you depart. 

 

 

*Disinclination to travel applies if an act of terrorism takes place within a 40-mile radius of your travel route or destination, up to 6 weeks before your departure. Please read our Policy Wording for full details of cover provided by Safe Journey, as well as terms, conditions and exclusions.

**£4.96 per person applies to a single trip of up to 8 days – whether you’re travelling locally or internationally. Single trip cover is available for trips of up to 180 days continuous travel, worldwide (£58.73 pp). Annual Multi-Trip cover is also available from £14.99 per person.

 

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From £4.96* per person

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  • Maximum excess per claim £100
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Annual Multi-Trip Cover

From £14.99 per person

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  • Safe Journey provides comprehensive travel insurance just for acts of terrorism.
  • Annual Multi-Trip insurance for travel durations of up to 31 days, for each trip you take during a year.
  • Available for singles, couples and families and with no maximum age limit and no medical screening requirements.
  • For Business and Leisure travellers.
  • For UK, Channel Island and Isle of Man residents when travelling in the UK and abroad, when you have booked and pre-paid flights or accommodation.
  • Safe Journey covers up to £2000 per person for travel arrangements, if where you are staying is affected by terrorism and you want to return home.
  • Travel delays caused by acts of terrorism are covered.
  • Personal possessions including money and passports are protected whilst you travel against damage or loss as a result of acts of terrorism.
  • 24 hour (UK based) emergency assistance to help you after an act of terrorism.
  • Maximum excess per claim £100
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†31 Days any-one-trip, Worldwide.