Flying Into Danger
It’s not something we like to talk about but bad things happen to good people, even good business people who are just out on the road to pursue the prosperity of their company. But in some cases, there may be some real travel threats on your route to your business destination. This is especially true today in the age of terrorism where a trip to Europe or the Middle East can mean some very real danger may loom as you travel.
It is our job as responsible adults to think about the dangers that could happen on an upcoming business trip and assess that danger and either approach the business objective differently or prepare accordingly. The first step if you suspect that your next business trip may be hazardous either from political unrest, bad weather or other reasons, is to do an honest review of the importance of this trip. If you can accomplish he goals of the trip without putting yourself or your business associates in harms way, that would be preferable to a potential disaster on the road.
If it looks like the trip is still a go, be sure you learn all you can about your destination, recommended safety precautions and the nature of the potential danger. The US State Department keeps their web site up to date on the nature of potential security risks at http://www.travel.state.gov.
The next step for preparing for a business trip that may be hazardous is to double and triple secure your documentation. You can make copies and scanned images of your important personal documents such as your passport, visa, driver’s license and other crucial identification cards that you must have overseas. By leaving copies of these at home where a contact person can access them and uploading digital copies to a public folder that you can access anywhere you can find the internet, you give yourself a safety net should those documents disappear. Also review the status of your travel documents and get y our renewals done now if there is any chance one of them will expire as you are out on the road.
If you are traveling to one or many foreign countries, make yourself familiar with the location and phone numbers of the US embassies in those countries. By having that information on your person as you move from country to country, you are ready to move swiftly should you need to call on them to help you out of a jam.
If you do encounter trouble and require medical help, you should have on your person your crucial personal data that can be used to quickly get you help. You can print up a card with your name, names of who to contact in an emergency, blood type, medical details such as allergies that should be noted, important medicines that you may have that can help you if you are in physical need and anything else a lay person might need if you are in a far away place in critical need. For even more security that this card is able to communicate your critical data, you can have it translated into the language of the country you are visiting so there is no delay as local health or public service persons work to get you help.
The more you do to prepare for your trip, the better prepared you will be to respond to trouble or even avoid trouble entirely if it occurs. By understanding the local customs and what to do in an emergency situation overseas, you can respond calmly and quickly to crisis and secure yourself, your business associates and property early and quickly. Then if danger does rear its head, you will be well prepared to lesson its impact on you.