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Travel Guides

Tips for Traveling Abroad

Sign passport, and fill in the emergency information: Make sure you have a signed, valid passport, and a visa, if required, and fill in the emergency information page of your passport.

Leave copies of itinerary and passport data page: Leave copies of your itinerary, passport data page and visas with family or friends, so you can be contacted in case of an emergency.

Check your overseas medical insurance coverage: Ask your medical insurance company if your policy applies overseas, and if it covers emergency expenses such as medical evacuation. If it does not, consider supplemental insurance.

Familiarize yourself with local conditions and laws: While in a foreign country, you are subject to its laws. The State Department web site at http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_1765.html has useful safety and other information about the countries you will visit.

Take precautions to avoid being a target of crime: To avoid being a target of crime, do not wear conspicuous clothing or jewelry and do not carry excessive amounts of money. Also, do not leave unattended luggage in public areas and do not accept packages from strangers.

Contact us in an emergency: Consular personnel at U.S. Embassies and Consulates abroad and in the U.S. are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to provide emergency assistance to U.S. citizens. Contact information for U.S. Embassies and Consulates appears on the Bureau of Consular Affairs website at http://travel.state.gov . Also note that the Office of Overseas Citizen Services in the State Department’s Bureau of Consular Affairs may be reached for assistance with emergencies at 1-888-407-4747, if calling from the U.S. or Canada, or 202-501-4444, if calling from overseas.

Planning Your Trip: Know Before You Go!

Travelers should familiarize themselves with their destinations, both to get the most enjoyment out of the visit and to avoid known dangers. Travelers should also be aware of restrictions on items that may be taken overseas.

Customs and Import Restrictions

 Many countries have restrictions on what you can take into that country, including food, pets (see “http://travel.state.gov/travel/tips/tips_1232.html#pe”), and medications. Even over-the-counter medications may be prohibited in some countries. Check with the embassies of your destination countries as to prohibited items. A listing of http://www.state.gov/s/cpr/rls/dpl/32122.htm States is available on the Department of State’s website. You can also find foreign embassy and consulate contact information in the http://www.travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_4965.html we publish for every country.


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