Ask Phil

Ask Phil

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    Will it be safe to go to Turkey, Jordan and Egypt in Sept/Oct 2016?

    It depends on where you go. The vast majority of Turkey is pretty safe. The border region (80 to 100kms) with Syria has a higher level of risk. There continue to be random attacks and small bombings in Istanbul, that's been going on for years. keep an eye on media reports and judge for yourself if it's getting worse in coming months. Jordan - the same. Stay away from border regions. I imagine you'll go to Petra - and popular tourist attractions, although potential targets, usually also have increased security. No government wants their tourism industry to be affected. Which brings us to Egypt - so many violent acts in popular tourism precincts means the confidence in the country as a destination is at rock bottom. Recent attacks in Hurghada on the Red Sea have brought violence to the one part of Egypt that had avoided it so far. Of all the destinations you mention I think Egypt has the highest risk - even at popular attractions such as the Pyramids, Luxor and the Red Sea resorts. But against this backdrop can I say the actual risk of being involved in a "terrorist" event is extremely slim. You have to be in the wrong place at exactly the wrong time. I suggest you speak to your tour provider about security measures they have put in place. Speak to your travel insurer about coverage in the event of an incident. Check your government's travel warnings for your destinations. Then make up your own mind about the level of risk you are willing to accept. almost 3 years ago

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    Is Europe safe from terrorist as of this moment? How about Spain?

    Wow, big question and impossible to answer, because of the unpredictability of terrorism. There's no doubt the RISK of an attack is at a very high point, but does this mean it WILL occur - and at exactly the moment you are in the place where it happens? It is a possibility, but a remote one. In fact you are much much more likely to be a victim of petty crime in Barcelona. It has extremely high rates of pickpocketing. Here's how to stay one step ahead of them: http://www.worldnomads.com/travel-safety/spain/Barcelona-Pickpocket-Capital-of-the-World Phil at World Nomads almost 3 years ago

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    Is there anything I should be aware of travelling from Singapore to Bangkok across the border on foot , do you have any suggestions

    The far southern states of Thailand bordering Malaysia have high level travel warnings in place from many foreign governments. There's a long-running conflict with many in those states who wish to secede from Thailand. Their campaign involves almost daily bombings and other acts of violence. Public buildings and transport hubs are often the target. Although foreigners are not deliberately targeted the attacks are indiscriminate - they don't care if you're there or not. Because of those warnings you may not be covered by your travel insurance if you travel there - check your policy and your home government's level of warning. almost 3 years ago

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    Can US citizens travel to Cuba?

    yes, if they meet certain criteria set down by the US Treasury - essentially your trip needs to be for the purposes of education, cultural exchange, sport or professional research. So no resort holidays yet. Read the criteria here: https://www.treasury.gov/resource-center/sanctions/Programs/Documents/cuba_faqs_new.pdf almost 3 years ago

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    oncoming Myanmar trip

    Mariusz, it's still so new to tourism and so remote that I've heard nothing about the travel safety aspect. And because bad news travels fast, I take that as a good sign.... but I defer to other intrepid souls who've been there to say. I'd love to see some photos and get some info from you when you return. Phil at World Nomads. almost 3 years ago

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    Istanbul - is it safe to go for New Year's eve?

    Small explosions in and around Istanbul happen occasionally - have done for years. So it becomes a game of chance. And you are right to be more concerned about large crowds and public events on dates of significance to the West. The risk will be higher. How much higher? No-one can say. But note this: the chances of an American citizen being killed in an act of terrorism is 1 in 20 million - about the same as being struck by lightning. You should be more concerned about the single largest risk to anyone travelling overseas - traffic accidents. Try to keep some perspective on the real chances of it happening, but at the same time take some simple precautions, such as avoiding large public gatherings (kind of takes the fun out of a New Years Eve street party - but it's up to you to decide how much risk you're willing to accept). almost 3 years ago

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    Is it safe travelling into Brazil in January 2016 San Paulo

    Bonnie Sao Paulo is like Rio -on steroids! You have to exercise a high level of personal security - don't wear flashy jewellery (or any jewellery - with jewels - really, stick to the cheap stuff). Forget the fancy watch, keep the cell phone out of sight, lock the laptop in the boot of the car or back at the hotel, try not to look "lost", be careful going out at night and be very careful which taxi you use. Download our Rio guide - the safety rules that apply there also apply in Sao Paulo. This is NOT saying Sao paulo is not a good place to visit - it's an exciting and vibrant city with much to offer. Just use caution. Get that Rio guide here: http://www.worldnomads.com/guides/rio-insiders-guide almost 3 years ago

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    Hi I have had dengue fever before when traveling Columbia. Is it safe to travel south east Asia?

    There are 4 (or is it 5) strains of DF. You can only get each one once, but each subsequent infection raises the prospect of developing Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever - nasty! Read more abiutDF here: https://www.worldnomads.com/travel-safety/worldwide/what-you-need-to-know-about-dengue-fever There's a very strong El Nino effect occurring this year 2015, and scientists are predicting a very bad year for DF throughout the tropics. That's already becoming evident with epidemics in Myanmar for example. Even Hawaii is experiencing a larger than usual number of cases (112 and rising). Take care, use the precautions outlined in the article I've linked you to. almost 3 years ago