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Summer Travel Survival: Your Essential Guide to Navigating Natural Disasters

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This guide provides essential tips for staying safe during summer travels, including assembling a “go bag,” understanding regional risks, and using travel protection services, ensuring preparedness against natural disasters like hurricanes and earthquakes.

Summer travel is synonymous with adventure, exploration, and the joy of discovering new places. As we set out to experience different cultures, landscapes, and activities, it’s essential to remember that nature can be unpredictable. While we plan our itineraries around sunny days and clear skies, the reality is that natural disasters like hurricanes, earthquakes, and floods can strike with little to no warning, turning a dream vacation into a chaotic and potentially dangerous situation.

In the face of such uncertainties, being prepared is not just a wise precaution but a necessity. Understanding the potential risks associated with your destination and knowing how to respond effectively can make all the difference. This guide aims to equip you with the knowledge and strategies needed to stay safe during natural disasters, ensuring that your summer travels remain memorable for all the right reasons.

From assembling a well-equipped “go bag” to familiarizing yourself with regional risks and leveraging the benefits of travel protection services like Global Rescue, we will cover essential tips and steps to help you navigate through unexpected events. Whether you’re planning a beach getaway, a mountain retreat, or a city exploration, these insights will help you travel with confidence and peace of mind, knowing you are prepared for any challenge nature might throw your way.

Embark on your summer adventures with the assurance that you have the tools and knowledge to stay safe, protect your loved ones, and enjoy your travels to the fullest, no matter what Mother Nature has in store. This guide provides essential tips and strategies to help you avoid or survive natural disasters while traveling this summer.

Preparedness is Key: Assemble a Well-Equipped “Go Bag”

A well-prepared traveler always has a “go bag” ready. This bag should contain essential items that you can quickly grab in case of sudden evacuations or emergencies. Here are some key items to include:

Valid Identification and Travel Documents: Ensure you have your passport, identification, and any necessary travel documents readily accessible. These documents are essential for identification, possible evacuation, and re-entry into your home country. Keep them in a waterproof and secure location, such as a sealed plastic bag within your travel bag.

Emergency Contact Information: Carry a list of emergency contact numbers, including local authorities, embassy or consulate contact details, and the phone numbers of your loved ones back home. In the event of a disaster, communication networks may be disrupted, so having these numbers readily available can help you seek assistance and inform your family about your well-being.

First Aid Kit and Medications: Make a compact first aid kit equipped with essential medical supplies such as bandages, antiseptics, pain relievers, and any prescription medications you require. Consider the duration of your trip and the availability of medical services at your destination.

Emergency Cash and Backup Cards: Keep enough emergency cash in both local and widely accepted international currency. ATMs and banking systems may be inaccessible during or after a disaster. Additionally, carry backup credit or debit cards in case your primary card gets lost, stolen, or compromised.

Local Maps and Language Guide: Include local maps and a basic language guide. A language guide can help you communicate with locals and emergency responders, allowing you to understand instructions and seek help effectively.

Designate a Meeting Point: If a catastrophic event separates you from your family or group, determine in advance where to shelter during an earthquake or move to higher ground during a tsunami. Establish a communication plan to stay connected with loved ones during emergencies. Identify an out-of-area contact person who can relay messages and provide updates.

These items and actions are in addition to the standard travel essentials like appropriate clothing, toiletries, and personal items. It’s also crucial to stay informed about the local emergency procedures and listen to instructions from local authorities during a natural disaster. Taking these precautions will enhance your safety and preparedness when traveling internationally.

Understand Regional Risks: Familiarize Yourself with Local Hazards

Knowing the specific natural disaster risks associated with your travel destination is critical for effective preparation and response. Here are some key considerations for different types of natural disasters:


Hurricanes, cyclones, and typhoons are powerful storms that can cause widespread damage and pose significant risks to travelers. Here are some tips for staying safe:

  • Stay Informed: Monitor weather forecasts and stay updated on potential storm developments. Use reliable sources such as the National Hurricane Center (NHC) or local meteorological services.
  • Evacuation Plan: Know the evacuation routes and local shelters in your area. If authorities issue an evacuation order, follow it promptly.
  • Secure Your Location: If you cannot evacuate, ensure that your lodging is secure. Move to an interior room, away from windows, and have emergency supplies ready.

Earthquakes are unpredictable and can occur without warning, making it essential to be prepared, especially if traveling to earthquake-prone areas:

  • Identify Safe Spots: Familiarize yourself with safe spots in your accommodation, such as under sturdy furniture or against interior walls.
  • Drop, Cover, and Hold On: During an earthquake, drop to your hands and knees, cover your head and neck, and hold on to something sturdy.
  • Aftershocks: Be prepared for aftershocks, which can follow the initial quake. Evacuate the building if it is structurally compromised.

Flooding can occur due to heavy rainfall, storms, or the overflow of rivers and lakes. Here’s how to stay safe:

  • Avoid Flood Zones: Check if your accommodation is in a flood-prone area and avoid staying there if possible.
  • Move to Higher Ground: If flooding occurs, move to higher ground immediately.
  • Do Not Drive Through Floodwaters: Avoid driving through flooded areas as the water may be deeper than it appears, and vehicles can be swept away.

Use Travel Protection Services: Global Rescue Membership

Consider getting a Global Rescue membership, which offers expert assistance and resources to keep you safe during natural disasters, including evacuation support and real-time updates. Here’s how Global Rescue can help:

  • Evacuation Support: In case of a natural disaster, Global Rescue can provide evacuation assistance to ensure you are moved to a safe location.
  • Real-Time Updates: Receive real-time information and alerts about developing situations, helping you make informed decisions.
  • Expert Assistance: Access to a team of experts who can provide guidance and support during emergencies, including medical and security advice.

Preparation Tips for Specific Natural Disasters

While we cannot predict or prevent natural disasters, we can take proactive steps to prepare and respond effectively. By understanding the risks, creating an emergency plan, assembling a disaster supply kit, and staying informed, you can minimize the impact of unpredictable events like earthquakes and tsunamis. When a hurricane, cyclone, or typhoon threatens your vacation or work trip, Global Rescue’s expert team can help keep you abreast of its path and assist with your evacuation as the storm predictions grow ominous.

  • Know the Risks: If traveling to an earthquake-prone area, research the likelihood and history of earthquakes in that region.
  • Secure Items: In your accommodation, secure heavy items that could fall and cause injury during an earthquake.
  • Drills and Training: Participate in earthquake drills if available. Knowing what to do can save lives.
  • Monitor Weather: Use reliable sources for weather updates and heed evacuation orders from local authorities.
  • Prepare Your Shelter: If staying in place, ensure your accommodation can withstand high winds and has emergency supplies.
  • Evacuation Route: Have a clear evacuation route and destination planned.
  • Stay Informed: Pay attention to weather alerts and warnings about potential flooding.
  • Move Valuables: Keep important documents and valuables in a waterproof bag and in a high place.
  • Avoid Floodwater: Do not attempt to walk or drive through floodwaters.

Staying Safe During a Natural Disaster

When a natural disaster strikes, knowing how to respond can significantly impact your safety and the safety of those around you. Here are some essential strategies for staying safe during different types of natural disasters:

During an Earthquake
  • Stay Indoors: If you are indoors, stay there. Move away from windows and take cover under sturdy furniture or against an interior wall.
  • If Outdoors: Move to an open area away from buildings, trees, streetlights, and utility wires.
  • In a Vehicle: Pull over to a safe location away from buildings, trees, overpasses, and utility wires. Stay in the vehicle until the shaking stops.
During a Hurricane
  • Follow Evacuation Orders: If local authorities issue an evacuation order, leave immediately and follow the designated evacuation routes.
  • Shelter in Place: If you are unable to evacuate, find a safe room within your accommodation, such as an interior room without windows. Keep emergency supplies close by.
  • Stay Informed: Keep a battery-powered radio or smartphone handy to receive updates and instructions from local authorities.
During a Flood
  • Move to Higher Ground: If flooding occurs, move to higher ground immediately.
  • Avoid Floodwater: Do not walk, swim, or drive through floodwaters. The water may be deeper and more dangerous than it appears.
  • Stay Put: If you are trapped in a building, move to the highest level. Do not climb into a closed attic to avoid getting trapped by rising floodwater.

Post-Disaster Actions

After a natural disaster, your actions can affect your safety and your ability to recover. Here are some steps to take:

  • Check for Injuries: Check yourself and others for injuries. Administer first aid if needed and seek medical attention for serious injuries.
  • Inspect Your Surroundings: Check your accommodation for structural damage and hazards, such as gas leaks or exposed wires.
  • Stay Informed: Continue to monitor local news and official sources for information and updates.
  • Contact Loved Ones: Let your family and friends know that you are safe. Use social media, text messages, or emergency contact numbers if phone lines are down.
  • Document Damage: Take photos and document any damage to your property or belongings for insurance purposes.

Global Rescue: Your Safety Net

If you’re traveling and there’s a natural disaster, a Global Rescue security membership provides access to an expert team of veteran military special forces and their expertise. Traveling members who cannot evacuate following an earthquake can rely on security operations teams to provide lifesaving advice, including where to shelter and how to reach safety. And since it’s a membership – not insurance – there are no claim forms or charges for member services.

Benefits of Global Rescue Membership
  • Comprehensive Support: Whether you need medical advice, evacuation assistance, or security support, Global Rescue provides comprehensive services to ensure your safety.
  • No Additional Costs: As a member, you won’t have to worry about claim forms or additional charges for services provided during an emergency.
  • Experienced Team: Access to a team of seasoned professionals with experience in handling emergencies and natural disasters.


While we cannot predict or prevent natural disasters, we can take proactive steps to prepare and respond effectively. By understanding the risks, creating an emergency plan, assembling a disaster supply kit, and staying informed, you can enhance your chances of staying safe, protecting your loved ones, and recovering more swiftly in the aftermath of a natural disaster.

Remember, preparedness is key, and it is everyone’s responsibility to prioritize safety. By taking these measures, you can enjoy your summer travels with greater peace of mind, knowing you are ready to face any challenges that may arise.

For more information and to ensure your safety during travel, consider reaching out to Global Rescue. Their expert team is ready to provide you with the support and resources needed to navigate through any natural disaster you may encounter on your journeys. Stay safe and enjoy your travels!

Enroll With Global Rescue Prior To Embarking On Your Next Adventure.

When a travel emergency arises, traditional travel insurance may not come to your aid, and a medical evacuation can cost up to $300,000.

The cost when you have a Global Rescue membership? $0. That’s why when the unexpected happens, you want the leader in rescue, evacuation and medical advisory behind you. You want Global Rescue.

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