GuideTravel Tips

What To Do When A Natural Disaster Strikes While You’re Traveling

Recent events have thrust people to one disaster after another, turning the lives of millions of people around the world upside-down. In just a snap, well-planned vacations have spun for the worse. Such is the case right now, especially with the COVID-19 outbreak that originated in Wuhan, China affecting more than 80,000 people in about 40 countries worldwide. Then, there’s the Taal Volcanic Eruption in the Philippines, flooding in Indonesia, bush fires in Australia–there’s just no stopping calamities.

As there’s really no way of predicting impending disasters such as hurricanes, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, and tsunamis, the only real way to survive is to buckle up with your emergency preparedness. In the midst of a natural disaster, here are some things to keep in mind:



Be Level-headed

In tough times, you should be able to think logically and be mentally strong to make wise decisions. Catastrophes can be stressful but in order to evaluate the situation, you must prioritize your safety before your emotions. Panicking can sometimes put you in more danger and may even inflict wounds to you. Remember to always think quickly but rationally first before taking any form of action.



via Ink Drop on Shutterstock



Bring Only Your Valuables

While leaving your belongings, especially those that carry sentimental value, sounds like a tough decision to make, your first priority should always be your own safety. Bringing too many things with you will slow you down, especially if you already need to flee.

Just don’t forget your essential documents as your proof of identity. You should also have cash on you, you as well as your prescribed medications if you’ve got any.



Search For A Safe Place

During dangerous situations, you must exhaust all your contacts to help yourself find refuge away from the center of the disaster. If you are not familiar with anyone in the place where you are in, your top choice might be staying in a hotel or airport. Prevent yourself from being defenseless outside, look for an immediate shelter that can protect you from falling objects, especially during earthquakes.



via Taylor Grote on Unsplash



Keep Yourself And Your Loved Ones Updated

You now live in a world powered by technology and you should utilize it well. If you can still access the internet, scan the recommended actions you can take as advised by the local government and the embassy or consulate of your country in the country you are visiting. These will help lead you to the safe zones and places where you can have access to medical service if ever you are injured.

And while you’re at it, you should let your loved ones know that you are safe and okay. Informing them about your whereabouts can also fast track how authorities can find you as it establishes your location, what’s happening to you, and the things you may need.



Save The Contact Number Of Your Country’s Embassy

If you are abroad, your opportunity to flee the country you are visiting lies with your embassy. Usually, countries prepare to send home their citizens during emergencies. Do it right away because chances are, communications will be disrupted as the situations become more complicated.

In cases when the contact number is unreachable because of the volume of calls received by the embassy, you can also go directly to their exact address. Make sure to bring authentic proof of your nationality. If the embassy is too far from you, you can search for the emergency hotline numbers usually given to you by your travel agency. When calls cannot be made, texting may also work.



via JARIRIYAWAT on Shutterstock



Clean And Dress Your Wounds

Even if you only have cuts and scrapes in your body, you must sanitize and cover them to prevent further infection if you can. The last thing you want to experience is to seek medical attention in a place where it is not accessible. If you can’t do first aid on your wound and you’re stuck in a certain area try your best to conserve your energy until help is at reach.



Always Remember To Stock Up On Essentials 

Stock up on food and purchase emergency lighting if you need to go in hiding because of the chaos ensuing. Also, think about others who also need to purchase their food and stop yourself from hoarding. Just get what you need for the estimated time you need to stay in your hotel or at the airport.


Got other tips to share? Sound off in the comments now!



*Featured image by Vlad Teodor on Shutterstock