Experiencing an injury abroad is extremely stressful even for the most experienced of travelers. It is important to plan ahead for such catastrophes to mitigate as much stress as possible. It is important to have all aspects covered from your travel insurance, to knowing the hospitals in the region, to the liability laws of the country you are visiting.
No one wants to think about bad things happening when traveling, but it is a reality for many travelers and it is vital you are insured. It is not safe to assume that your current health or liability insurance will cover injuries to your person or damage or loss to your personal property when you are abroad. In fact most policies do not cover you or your items when you are abroad. Travelers insurance covers personal property damage or loss and personal injury in whatever country you are traveling. It is the only sure way to be sure that you will have insurance coverage. Most policies will also cover the costs incurred if you have to stay longer due to hospitalization or recovery.
Making sure that your costs are covered is just the beginning of crisis planning abroad. Familiarize yourself with the hospital, clinics, and law enforcement agencies in your area or region that you are staying. It is important that you know how reliable those establishments are in the case that you need to visit any or all of them. Be sure that there are no special protocols or procedures that must be followed in order to receive the service that you need. It is very dangerous to assume that a hospital or police station in another country operates in the same way as your native country. Often, there are enough similarities that it is not too much of an issue. However, in the countries that there is a difference it is highly beneficial to know these differences before it is necessary.
The most important step to being prepared when traveling abroad is to understand the laws of the foreign country. If you are unfortunate enough to be in an accident caused by someone else’s negligence it still might be your responsibility. Liability laws in personal injury and property damage cases vary greatly from country to country. It is not safe to assume that anyone else either then yourself is liable for injuries and damages suffered in a foreign country. Arm yourself with knowledge of your insurance, hospitals, and liability laws to have the best trip possible.