Learn How to Travel Safely

The check list below provides a number of ideas, tips and advice to help you protect yourself and reduce the risks and impacts of loss, theft and identity crime while travelling.

Optimise your Secure Sentinel support

  • Update critical documents on your Secure Sentinel file.

    • passport details of each person travelling

    • traveller's cheques numbers

    • airline ticket numbers. Which of the many digits on the tickets are important if you need replacements? Ask your airline or travel agent

    • travel insurance policy numbers

    • serial numbers of valuables e.g. laptop or camera

    • mobile phone details if you're taking your phone with you.

  • Upload scanned copies of important documentation to Secure Sentinel's online vault

    • You may upload up to 100 Mb of files to our website so that you can access these securely online should you need to.

    • Documents to save include passports and national visas, birth certificates, insurance policies and traveller's cheques

  • Record your Secure Sentinel membership number. How do you contact us in an emergency? Write down

    • your Secure Sentinel membership number

    • our international phone number

    • Two good places to record these numbers:

    • the address page of your passport

    • the copy of your main passport page.

  • Print a copy of our Contact Page and keep this with you

  • Attach luggage tags. Attach Secure Sentinel tags to all your luggage. You can also use travel labels, e.g. inside a suitcase. If you need more you may order these from the Membership area of our website

  • Purchase Securoseal and attach it to your luggage. If a thief opens and re-closes your zipped luggage you will be able to see evidence of tampering. Your bags won't be used for smuggling and you can report thefts sooner. Order Securoseal early as it can take a week to deliver.

Check travel rules and updates

  • Check travel advisories.

    • Get latest travel advice for your destinations:

      • subscribe to receive instant email updates of travel advice.

    • Register your details:

      • online or at your local Australian/New Zealand embassy, high commission, or consulate.

  • Check your visas.

    • Get information from:

      • your travel agent

      • consulates of each country you'll be visiting or transiting.

    • Be aware that a visa does not guarantee entry.

  • Check nationality issues. A country you are visiting or transiting may regard you as a citizen. Check your status if in any doubt because of potential serious problems. For example, maybe you emigrated as a child. If your paperwork was wrong at the time you may have legal obligations.

  • Understand the laws in your destination countries. Some countries have very different laws and legal processes. Be familiar with major differences to what you know at home. If you are in trouble with the law, your consulate can help you. But they can't override local laws, however harsh or strange they may seem.

Check your documentation

  • Check your passport.

    • Make sure your passport is valid for at least six months.

    • Make extra copies of your passport photo and carry these with you. You may need a replacement passport while overseas.

  • Arrange email access. Get web access to your regular email account. Or set up a free online email account like GMail, Hotmail, or Yahoo.

    • military service

    • taxes

    • immigration violations.

Prepare for health and wellbeing

  • Check medical needs.

    • Do you need special vaccinations? Some vaccinations take a few weeks to organise. Some vaccinations can then take several days or weeks to become effective. So do this early.

    • Get a letter from your doctor/s explaining any drugs you are carrying. In some countries what we think of as ordinary pain killers are illegal. Be very careful about this.

  • Buy insurance to cover:

    • Hospital treatment

    • medical evacuation

    • special activities you're planning to do (e.g. adventure sports).

Stay in touch with family and friends

  • Make phone number lists:

    • Print out the Secure Sentinel direct dial contact numbers. There are now numbers for most countries. Need to talk to us? Ask the international operator to reverse charges to us.

    • Create a list of your key personal and business contacts. Print the list in case your phone is lost or stolen.

  • Arrange international roaming. Decide which mobile phones should use international roaming. Roaming usually means you can use your phone in the country you are visiting. But your call down the street in the foreign city goes via your home country. What you think is one cheap local call is actually two expensive international calls. Check with your phone company to avoid nasty billing surprises.

  • Check power plug needs. It's almost certain you'll need a power plug adapter. Some of your 240 volt devices won't work properly at 110 volts. This is a particular problem for devices with motors like shavers. So you may need to buy some cheap appliances overseas if travelling for a while.

  • Backup your laptop before you leave.

  • Store a copy of your travel itinerary with someone at home.

  • Keep in regular contact with friends and relatives while you're overseas.  If they know where you are they can be more help in case of emergency.

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