… Prepared by Dr Robyn Dawson TMA Member Burnie, Tasmania
Australians are making 6 million overseas trips each year. The first half of this year saw 1.5 million more travellers departing Australia than incoming tourists.
In keeping with Australian’s larrikin reputation, travellers are becoming more adventurous, exploring more remote and dangerous destinations with more challenging activities.
To assist persons in trouble overseas, the Department of Foreign Affairs provides Consular services. The number of services in a year has been know to exceed 35,000, spanning 163 countries.
Situations where assistance has been requested have included loss of property or passports, natural disasters (tsunami, earthquake, flood), civil unrest or terrorism, airline strikes, crime, serious accident, disabled cruise ship, serious illness or even death.
Thailand is a very popular destination, with its attraction of sun, surf and bars. However DFAT figures show that Thailand is the most dangerous country for Australians, with 343 deaths recorded from July 2005-June 2010. Causes reported include; Accident 62, Illness 147, Murder 5, Natural 48, Suicide 11, Unknown 70.
Trailing Thailand is Vietnam with 236 deaths, USA 229, Greece 239, Phillipines 225, Indonesia 195, Germany 188, UK 164, Hong Kong 155, China 144.
Travellers take uncharacteristic risks e.g. Driving scooters without helmets, wearing shorts and sandals. There is always the lure of drinking excessively on holidays and experimenting with drugs and casual sex.
The take home message is TAKE CARE – BEWARE. Travel Insurance is absolutely necessary.
In case of an emergency a medical evacuation could be required and this can be very expensive. If you are not covered by travel insurance the cost is yours. It is estimated that only 14% of travellers have all recommended vaccinations. Full medical preparation and insurance will give you peace of mind.
Be prepared and you will enjoy the adventure.
Tags: Travel insurance