Traveling invokes all sorts of anxieties, with endless possibilities of things that could go wrong. Really, what’s the worst that could happen? In the spirit of Halloween, we imagined the most harrowing nightmare scenarios you could face while traveling. If nothing else, these may make your own travel woes pale in comparison!
- Food poisoning
Who could imagine a worse place to come down with a bad case of food poisoning, (the kind that chains you to the restroom) than on an airplane? Oh the horror.
How to avoid: Steer clear of buffets, avoid raw foods like sushi and beef tartar, and opt for bottled water over tap.
- Someone plants illegal contraband in your luggage
Nightmare scenario: After flying from another country, you pick up your bag from the carousel and discover something you did not pack, whether it’s drugs, a bomb or a live reptile.
How to Deal: Listen to those airport announcements that warn not to leave bags unattended. Purchase locks for any bags you will be traveling with. If this does happen to you, immediately alert airport security, police or a customs agent and then call a lawyer (just in case.)
- The bank freezes your credit card
Fraud prevention detection has gotten so effective, that it sometimes backfires, with your bank putting a hold on your account due to “suspicious activity” — including buying things made outside of the country. It’s never fun when your card is declined while trying to make a necessary purchase.
How to Deal: Bring plenty of cash, cards and travelers checks! Give your bank advance warning of trips.
- Jailed in a foreign country
It does happen, whether it’s due to not understanding the severity of the laws in other countries, or simply not being aware of cultural differences.
How to avoid: Always use common sense, and be sure to brush up on local law and customs before traveling. In these instances, having a service like ATG’s “Travel Smart | Travel Safe” program will assure you have every resource necessary when these nightmare situations arise.
- You end up in hospital in foreign country
It could be a physical injury, a car accident, a ruptured appendix, you name it. Being hospitalized in another country, especially if you don’t speak the native language, is scary.
How to Prepare: The #1 thing to check before you leave is that your Travel Management Company has an extensive Duty of Care program. Prior to leaving for a trip, check to make sure your insurance policy covers you while traveling abroad. If not, consider purchasing a short-term health insurance policy that does. If you can, contact the nearest Embassy for your country before choosing a hospital.
Whether you encounter these travel nightmares or others such as natural disasters, missed flights, or identity theft, be sure you know what to do in case of an emergency. And follow these additional tips to make sure you stay safe from these and other travel nightmares.