Tuesday 8 October 2019
How to get through the not-so-fun bits of travelling. Photo: iStock

Writer J.R.R. Tolkien once said, “Not all those who wander are lost”. However, there are those who travel who do get lost, lose things or get hurt and fall ill, and that is the reality of it all. Should you meet any of these unfortunate events, here are some tips on how you can get through it with minimal fuss.

Lost travel documents.

This could be anything from your passport to a travel permit issued by Immigration upon entry. If you lose it, you should first report it to the police or local authorities and get a written report. Then immediately contact the nearest embassy or consulate as they should be able to provide you with a temporary passport and further guidance. If your country is not represented by an embassy or consulate in the region you are visiting, you should call the Foreign Service in your home country and ask for guidance. Do note that a temporary passport in most cases is valid only for homebound travel and not for onward travel.

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Photo: iStock


Let’s face it, a new country usually means different weather and new viruses, so falling ill is not unexpected. Always be sure to take note of the ambulance emergency number in the country you are travelling to and be sure to have your insurance company’s contact on speed dial. As an additional step, always keep your travel insurance card and details in your money belt or somewhere obvious where medical staff can find it in case you are involved in an accident.


In the unlikely event of the death of a family member or travel companion, you are advised to first go to the hospital. Depending on the cause of death, a police report will most likely be necessary. An additional priority would be to inform the embassy or consulate of the death. Ensure the safekeeping of all the documents belonging to the deceased as it would be important in the process of transporting the body back home.


According to Lonely Planet, the likelihood of a traveller being assaulted is higher than meeting with an accident. A traveller who has been assaulted should contact the police or local authorities and report the incident. It is also important to seek medical attention immediately to ensure there are no health hazards. If needed, call your travel insurance company which can advise you further.

Missing money.

Cashless or not, losing your money especially when travelling can be a disaster. In case this happens, you have several options. First, contact your travel insurance company for guidance. If you need money urgently, have friends or family wire money through services such as Western Union or seek advice at your embassy. A pro-tip by Business Insider is to keep a little spare change, anything between 50 and 100 in local currency, hidden in several places in your luggage. This will come in handy during such circumstances. You are advised never to store larger sums than you can afford to lose.


This article is an excerpt from UNRESERVED’s October 2019 issue from the article PRO TIPS FOR TRAVEL EMERGENCIES.

Related: People are Travelling More in 2019, According to UN