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BNO

British Embassy
3100 Massachusetts Avenue, NW
Washington DC 20008
Telephone:
(1)(202) 588 6500 Embassy
(1)(202) 588 7800 Consular
(1)(202) 588 7830 British Council
Fax:
(1)(202) 588 7870 Chancery

British Consulate-General, New York


845 Third Avenue(between 51st and 52nd Streets)
New York, NY 10022
Tel: (212) 745-0200
Fax: (212) 754-3062
* Local Time
Mon-Fri: 0900-1700

* GMT
Mon-Fri: 1400-2200
Consular hours:
* Local Time
Mon-Fri: 0900-1300; 1500-1600
* GMT
Mon-Fri: 1400-1600; 2000-2100

Consul-General, New York and


Director-General, Trade & Investment USA
Alan has been Consul-General and Director-General, Trade & Investment USA since January 2007.
He is responsible for both British political and wider relations in one of the most important cities in
world and for the nine teams across the US whose job is to promote British Trade and Investment
opportunities. He sits on the Board of UK Trade and Investment and is the UK Trade and
Investment Olympic champion tasked with globally co-ordinating work on London 2012.
From 2003-2006, Alan was British High Commissioner to Singapore where he was heavily involved
with the strategy for London's winning bid for the 2012 Olympics and Her Majesty the Queen's
State Visit.
He was seconded to Shell in 2002 as Vice President for International Relations responsible for the
company's global relationships with governments.
Earlier, Alan was the British Ambassador in the Philippines at a time when People Power over
threw a President. He has also served as Director General of the British Trade and Cultural office
Taipei. Alan has served in a variety of jobs in London and as Deputy Head of Mission at the British
Embassy in Addis Ababa.
Alan was educated at Strand School and the London School of Economics. He is a member of the
MCC, The Royal Commonwealth Society and he is a Freeman of the City of London.
Alan was made Companion of the Order of St. Michael and St. George in 1997 and a Knight
Commander of the Royal Victorian Order in 2006.
Meiklejohn was born in Woking, outside London, in 1967. He attended Merton College, Oxford
University, graduating in Politics, Philosophy and Economics.
After University, Dominic worked for HM Customs and Excise before joining the Foreign and
Commonwealth Office in 1990. After working for the European Community Department for two
years, he learned Polish prior to working in the British Embassy Warsaw, where he headed the
British Know How Fund for Poland (1993-96). In 1997 Dominic worked for the OSCE Mission in
Albania, before heading up the India team in the South Asian Department of the FCO.
In 2000, Dominic was posted as First Secretary to the British Embassy Warsaw, with a particular
focus on European Union issues in the run-up to Poland's accession to the EU. In 2003, Dominic
returned to the UK as Deputy Head of the Environment Policy Department. From 2004-2005 he
led the FCO's Knowledge Management Programme. During this period, Dominic led two

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deployments of the FCO's Consular Rapid Deployment Team- to Sri Lanka, after the tsunami in
2004; and to Pakistan, after the earthquake there in 2005.
From 2006-2007, Dominic served as Deputy Consul-General, Basra, Iraq. From June 2007 he
worked with the FCO's Change Unit. He took up his current appointment on 22 January 2008.
Dominic and his partner Joanne are the proud parents of Olivia. Outside of the office Dominic
cycles around Manhattan, plays soccer (football) and, when parenting duties allow, enjoys the
cultural riches offered by New York. He tries hard to understand Baseball.
Gordon Innes is the Director Trade and Investment for the British Government’s economic
development organisation in the United States, UK Trade & Investment. He is a dual-qualified
lawyer with extensive experience in cross-border business, regulation, and policy.
A graduate of the London School of Economics and the University of Melbourne, Australia, Gordon
has worked in both the private and public sectors.
Much of his private sector experience was with international law firms, where he specialised in
commercial and financial regulation, helping multinational corporations to navigate issues
pertaining to UK and EU government decision-making.
In addition to his regulatory legal work, Gordon supported several commercial deals and mergers.
In 2001, Gordon entered the British public sector when he joined the UK Department for Business
(then Trade and Industry). He worked on several strategic projects, including creating a
competitive market for nuclear decommissioning, and he was subsequently appointed Director in
the Department’s Corporate Law Team. There, Gordon developed and implemented post-Enron
reforms on financial reporting and statutory audit.
Over the years, Gordon’s work has brought him to the UK, Australia, Belgium, and now to the U.S.
Based in New York, Gordon leads business trade and investment teams in eight US offices. Each
year, they help up to 2000 UK-based businesses to succeed in the US market; and some 170 US
companies to bring high quality investment to the UK’s vibrant economy
Michael G Dowd
Attorney at Law
420 Fifth Avenue, 25th Floor
New York, NY 10018-2729
Tel: (212) 703-5450
Telecopier (212) 703-5440
(Criminal Law)
Fragomen, Del Rey, Bernsen & Loewy, PC
Attorneys at Law
515 Madison Avenue
New York, NY 10022
Tel. 212) 891-7513 / 688-8555
(Immigration)
Leonard J Levenson
Attorney at Law
225 Broadway
New York, NY 10007
Tel. (212) 732-0522
Fax. (212) 587-0570
(Criminal Law)
Paul D Solomon Esq, LLP
290 Central Avenue, Suite 102
Lawrence, NY 11559-8507
Tel. (516) 239-7052
(Debt Collection, Divorces, Personal Injury, Criminal Law)
If you are seriously ill or injured
If you are hospitalised
We aim to contact British nationals within 24 hours of being told they have been admitted to
hospital.

We don’t usually contact or visit people who have travelled specifically for medical treatment.

If you are in hospital as a result of an assault or other crime, we will visit you as soon as possible.

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How you are
In all other cases, we will take account of factors such as your condition, your ability to speak on
the phone, whether you have relatives or friends with you, whether you have a tour company
representative and the standard of medical facilities, before deciding whether a visit is
appropriate.
If we decide it is, and there is a British embassy in the same city as the hospital which you are in,
we aim to visit you within 48 hours of being told that you have gone into hospital.
Contacting your family
We can also contact your family or friends in the UK to tell them that you are in hospital if you
want us to.
If asked, we can help you to liaise with your insurance company or medical evacuation company.
Remember to keep any receipts or doctors’ notes in case you need them to make a claim. We may
also be able to help you communicate with hospital staff if they do not speak English.
If you have a mental illness
Facilities for dealing with mental illness vary widely around the world. In some countries there are
not enough resources, in others expensive privately-run clinics are the only real option and, in
some places, people with mental illness may be detained by the police instead of being admitted
to hospital.

If you are mentally ill and want our help, we will do our best to make sure you receive it, wherever
you are. But we cannot provide this help and advice ourselves.
Medication
If you have run out of a prescribed medication we can give you information on getting supplies
locally. You should be aware, however, that in some countries your medication might be banned or
unavailable.

If necessary, we can help local medical staff contact medical staff, friends or family in the UK who
may be able to advise on your medical history and who may be the most appropriate people to
offer continued support if you return to the UK.
Paying for treatment
You may find that your insurance policy does not cover mental illness, or is not valid because you
did not declare a pre-existing condition. In these cases, you or your family must expect to pay for
any treatment.

Lost or stolen passports


If your passport is lost or stolen you should complete the lost/stolen passport notification form.
You must complete the form as fully as possible, otherwise it could result in the form being
returned to you.
Applicants should send a police report and photo identification such as a driver's license, along
with the completed Lost/Stolen Passport Notification Form.
Recovered passports
If you find a passport that does not belong to you and cannot return it directly to the rightful
holder, please send it into your nearest consulate as soon as possible.

Completed applications should be sent to the Passport Office at the address below:
Passport Office
British Embassy
19 Observatory Circle, NW
Washington, DC 20008
Tel: (900) 285 7277
(In the event that your passport application is rejected your documentation will be returned to you
via United States Postal Service (USPS). If you would prefer to use UPS please indicate on the
credit card authorisation form)
Calls from land lines cost $2.60 per minute. If you wish to pay by credit card and are calling from a
payphone or cell phone, please call 1-800 630 3332.
The passport office is open to the public from 08:00 to 11:30 a.m. Monday to Friday.
The Passport Office at the British Embassy, Washington DC, issues full validity passports to all
British Citizens resident or visiting the US.

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15 October 2008.
They apply to applications to replace an expired passport, applications for a first time passport, to
replace a passport of restricted validity*, issuing a new passport with amended personal details
(e.g. a change of name after marriage) and replacing a passport which has been lost or stolen.
Fees are subject to change.
C1/BNO-A - Adults over 16 (32 page) = $226.00 each (including postage $241)
C1/BNO - A - Adults over 16 (48 page) = $274.00 each (including postage $289)
C2/BNO-B Children under 16 (32 page) = $144.00 (including postage $159)
The onus is on the applicant to submit the correct fee and correctly completed application form.
We only accept the following forms of payment:
Credit card (Mastercard or Visa) by completing the appropriate authorisation form or by money
orders or cashier or certified bankers checks made payable to the British Embassy Government
Account.
PERSONAL CHEQUES AND PERSONAL CERTIFIED CHEQUES ARE NOT ACCEPTED
All applicants must include a postal fee of $15 (for up to 3 applications within the continental US, 4
or more will require a total of $30 postage).
Passports are returned via UPS overnight service only. Please provide a street address where an
adult may sign for the package upon receipt. (P.O. boxes are not acceptable). The passport office
cannot be held responsible for loss or damage once a package containing passports and/or
documents has been despatched from this office.
The UPS postage fee includes insurance cover up to $100. If you wish to insure the package to
cover the cost of replacing the passport/supporting documentation you may choose to do so for an
additional fee of $1.80 for up to $300 and $0.60 per $100 after that.
Fees are subject to change. For the latest fees or other updates, please visit our website or call
abtran 1-900 285 7277 (calls from land lines cost $2.60 per minute. If you wish to pay by credit
card and are calling from a payphone or cell phone please call 1-800 630 3332.
The passport application must be completed otherwise it may be returned to the applicant with
instructions.
As of 1 April 2008 no refunds will be issued for unsuccesffull or fraudulent passport applications.
Help if you are arrested or detaineed
British nationals in detention or prison overseas
If a relative or friend has been detained or held in prison overseas, this is the support we can give.

If your relative or friend has asked us to, we will tell you as soon as we can, that they have been
detained or held in prison. However, to protect their confidentiality, we will not provide any details
of the detention or arrest, or tell you how to contact them, unless they have given us permission.
Prison conditions
We can provide general information about the country involved, prison conditions and the local
legal system.

We can put you in touch with the prisoners’ welfare charity, Prisoners Abroad.

If the prison where your friend or relative is being detained agrees, we can pass on any money you
want to send to buy prison ‘comforts’, use the phone and so on.

In many countries, mail sent or received by the prisoner will be opened and read by the
authorities, and phone conversations may be monitored.
Rape & sexual assault
If you have been sexually assaulted whilst abroad you should tell the relevant embassy or your
nearest consular office as soon as possible.
You should also tell the local police as soon as you can and insist on a police report.
We take any report of rape or sexual assault seriously and will offer you support as soon as
possible and in privacy. We aim to be polite, patient, sensitive and non-judgmental.
In most cases of rape and sexual assault, the victims, no matter what their sex, prefer to talk
about their ordeal with women. If that is what you want, we will do our best to make sure that a
female officer is present at any meeting.
What we can do to help:

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advise you about local police and legal procedures
accompany you to the local police station and where possible we can try to make sure you are
interviewed by a female officer
provide a list of local lawyers and interpreters
help you to arrange a medical examination where possible with a female doctor
depending on local laws and customs we can also arrange for you to get advice on sexually
transmitted infections, and on pregnancy and abortion
contact relatives or friends if you want us to
provide information on what professional help is available locally and back in the UK consult our
police advisor who can consider using the services of a Sexual Offences Trained Officer from your
local police force to advise and help you
Whether you take legal action after an attack is entirely your decision. But please remember, if
you change your mind later forensic and other evidence may be lost.
In some countries you must report the crime before returning to the UK if you want it to be
investigated.
Missing Persons
When a relative or friend goes missing abroad it can be very distressing and you may feel at a loss
as to what to do about it.

If you are in the UK and worried about a British national who you think is missing abroad, we can
let you know how to produce a missing person's report for your local police so Interpol enquiries
can begin.
Contact the FCO
Contact the FCO in London on 020 7008 1500 or if you are abroad yourself then contact us here.

Although we cannot carry out physical searches on your behalf, we can give you information about
appropriate local authorities. We can also give you contact details for any relevant local charitable
and voluntary organisations specialising in tracing missing people.
Detective agencies
Where appropriate, we can give you information about the federation or association of any local
private detective agencies.

If you want, Consular staff in London can meet family representatives, maintain contact with you
and tell you about any new developments.
Help if someone dies
Death of a British national abroad in suspicious circumstances
As well as the support which we can offer if someone dies from natural causes, we can
also suggest the best way to raise any concerns with the local authorities if there is evidence of
someone dying in suspicious circumstances.
Basic information
We can also offer basic information about the local police system and legal system, including any
legal aid that is available. If required, we can provide lists of local lawyers and interpreters
(although we do not pay for either) and, where possible, details of support groups.
In all cases where you, as next of kin, have concerns about the circumstances surrounding the
death, we suggest you get professional legal advice.
Can't investigate ourselves
We cannot investigate deaths ourselves and, in many countries, investigating authorities and the
courts will not answer enquiries, including from our own staff. If this is the case, it is very
important to consider appointing a local lawyer who can look after your interests in court and
follow any trial for you.
Standards vary
We will consider making appropriate representations to the local authorities if there are concerns
that the investigation is not being carried out in line with local procedures or if there are justified
complaints about discrimination against the person who has died or their family. The standard of
investigative procedures and expertise varies greatly across the world.
Meeting family representatives
Consular staff in London are available to meet family representatives. They will contact the next of
kin if the investigating authorities tell us about any new developments. Where possible, if the next

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of kin visits the country where the person died during the early stages of the investigation and
initial court hearings, our staff there may be able to meet them.
Bereavement
There are a number of organisations in the UK that can help bereaved families and friends come to
terms with a death, whether the death was natural or otherwise. Some, such as Support after
murder and manslaughter, can help you face the problems and difficulties that arise from death
overseas under suspicious circumstances.

We also have a leaflet called Victims of crime abroad (PDF, 329KB) which you may also find
helpful. You can find details on our travel website under 'Our publications'.
Travel insurance
Many people really regret not taking out travel insurance. They think their credit card accident
cover, home insurance, or private health cover is enough to cover them.
The real cost when things go wrong
An emergency abroad can be extremely expensive. If you need to be returned to the UK it could
cost you thousands, unless you are properly insured. It can cost, for example,

• £30,000-£35,000 – for an air ambulance from USA’s East coast


• £12,000-£16,000 – for an air ambulance from the Canaries
• £15,000-£20,000 – for a scheduled flight, stretcher and doctor escort from Australia
Figures supplied by FirstAssist

It is important that you know that the British embassy will not pay for this.

What should my travel insurance policy cover?


• medical and health cover for an injury or sudden illness abroad – you’ll find more information in
our medical and health cover page
• 24 hour emergency service and assistance
• personal liability cover in case you’re sued for causing injury or damaging property
• lost and stolen possessions cover
• cancellation and curtailment (cutting short your trip) cover
• extra cover for activities that are often excluded from standard policies, such as jet skiing.

The policy should cover the whole time that you’re away until you arrive back in the UK.

Your policy may also have:

• personal accident cover


• legal expenses cover
• financial protection if your airline goes out of business before or during your trip.

Many insurers will extend cover if you ask them. If not, shop around for a specialist policy.

Common travel insurance policy exclusions


Always check the conditions and exclusions of your policy:

• most policies will not cover drink or drug-related incidents


• you must take reasonable care of your possessions or your policy won’t cover you.

Travel insurance buying tips


• shop around to find a good price and the right product rather than opting to travel without cover
• cheaper policies will usually have less cover – ask yourself whether it is worth the initial saving
• consider an annual multi-trip insurance if you make several trips a year – you’ll save time and
money.

We’ve listed insurers on the Know Before You Go Partners page on the FCO website.

Cancelling or cutting a trip short

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Check carefully to see exactly what you’re covered for. A good insurance policy will cover you for:

• accident
• illness
• pregnancy (as long as you didn’t know you were pregnant when you bought the policy)
• jury service or witness summons
• home emergency, such as fire, storm or flood, burglary
• redundancy
• strikes
• bad weather – affecting the departure of flights and ships.

Make sure your policy:

• will refund the full cost of your holiday


• pay out if you need to cancel or cut short a trip if, for example, you fall ill
• cover pre-paid expenses such as excursions
• cover the extra money it costs you to get home

And try to book through a travel agent registered with Association of British Travel Agents (ABTA),
Air Travel Organisers' Licencing (ATOL) or other credible financial protection organisations.

Personal liability insurance


If you accidentally cause an injury to someone or damage their property they may sue you. Good
travel insurance will cover you for personal liability.

Travel insurance can include a payment made for permanent disability or death.

Cover for stolen, lost or damaged possessions


You can normally choose the limits in your policy. Limits for single items, such as cameras and
jewellery can vary from as low as £250 up to £1000 or more. Check these limits are realistic.

You should report a loss to the police within 24 hours. Insurance companies will need proof that
you did notify the police when you make your claim.

All insurance policies say that you must take care of your belongings at all times. If you don’t,
the insurer may not pay out.

Tip: take the same care of your property as if it were uninsured.

Lost baggage on flights


Do not rely on compensation from an airline if it loses your luggage.

By law, airlines only have to pay a specified minimum value per kilo of lost luggage. This is
unlikely to cover the full value of your things.

Legal expenses cover


This will help you to pursue compensation or damages following personal injury while you’re
abroad. This is very important in countries without a legal aid system.
Travel health
Travelling abroad can expose you to disease and health risks. It is important to learn the dangers
and how to stay healthy.

Vaccinations and immunisations


Visit your GP at least six weeks before you travel to check if you need any vaccinations or to take
other steps (like taking malaria tablets).

Remember: these treatments aren’t usually available on NHS prescriptions.

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General travel health tips
You should also make extra preparations if you have an existing medical condition.

• take out adequate travel insurance or you could face a huge medical bill if you fall ill and need
treatment
• get a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) to entitle you to free and discounted healthcare in
European countries
• check the health section of our country travel advice before you travel
• drink plenty of water in hot climates to avoid dehydration
• be safe in the sun - use a high-factor sunscreen and avoid excessive sunbathing between 11am -
3pm
• find out the local emergency services numbers and the number of the local hospital
• practice safe sex - take condoms with you because the quality varies in different countries. HIV
and Aids, and other sexually transmitted diseases are also a risk worldwide

Long-distance journeys
• don’t wear tight clothing on long-distance journeys
• do regular stretching exercises such as flexing and extending your ankles to avoid circulation
problems
• walk round at regular intervals on long flights
• drink plenty of water on flights and avoid drinking too much alcohol.

Consult your doctor before long distance travel if you:


• are pregnant or have given birth in the last six months
• have a history of blood disorders, deep vein thrombosis or pulmonary embolism
• are taking hormonal medication (including the contraceptive pill)
• have cancer, heart problems or have recently had surgery.

If you have a pre-existing medical condition


• tell your travel insurer about it
• ask your doctor how the trip might affect your condition
• check local conditions such as climate and pollution levels and consider how you might be
affected
• carry a doctor’s letter and a copy of any prescriptions
• ensure your medication is legal in the country you are visiting – the British embassy can advise
you
• learn key words and phrases in the local language for your condition, medication and emergency
help
• take the same precautions you normally would in the UK if you weren’t going to be at home for a
while.

The Department of Health and NHS websites have more information about travel health.
Travel money
Don’t be a victim of theft and fraud when you’re abroad.
Before you go
• get some local currency – you’ll probably need to order less common currencies a week in
advance
• order a mixture of cash and travellers’ cheques
• write down the numbers of your travellers’ cheques
• write down your credit card numbers and expiry dates – leave a copy at home
• check your credit card is valid in the country you’re visiting
• note your credit card’s emergency cancellation phone number
• take enough money to cover emergencies
When you’re away
• familiarise yourself with the local currency as soon as you arrive
• don’t carry more money than you need for the day or evening
• If you need to carry a lot of cash ask your partner of friend to carry some for you
• keep a small amount of cash in your wallet and the rest in a secure money belt or inside pocket

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• if you have several credit or debit cards, only take one out with you
• leave your cash, cards and travellers’ cheques in a hotel safe – check it is secure

Traveller's checklist
We’ve put together this travel checklist to help you plan for your trip abroad and stay safe whilst
you are there. We’ve got more advice for specific types of travellers in our Travel advice relevant
to you section.
Before you go:
check our travel advice pages for the country you are visiting.
Sign up for email alerts and you’ll get the latest updates for that country. Register with our
LOCATE service so we can get in touch with you if something goes wrong
find out where the nearest embassy will be – check their website to find out what services they
offer and their opening times
don’t travel without insurance – make sure it covers you for any activities such as extreme or
water sports
travelling within the EU? Then get a free European Health Insurance Card for free or reduced
emergency care - you still need full travel insurance though!
check with your doctor whether you need any vaccinations at least six weeks before you travel
make sure you’ve got correct visas for the country you are visiting and that your passport is valid
for certain countries your passport must be valid for 6 months after the date you travel – check
before you go
take photocopies of your passport and other important documents and keep these separate from
the originals when you travel
tell a friend or relative where you are going and for how long for - give them some idea of your
itinerary if possible and an emergency contact number
take enough money for your trip and some back-up funds in a mix of cash and travellers cheques -
make a note of the cheques’ numbers before you go
invest in a good travel guide to help you plan your trip
driving abroad? Make sure your licence is current and valid. Make sure you are aware of the
driving laws in the country you are visiting
When you are away:
think about what you are doing at all times and trust your instincts - don’t take risks that you
wouldn’t at home!
don’t openly display valuables such as mobile phones or digital cameras and consider using a
padlock on suitcases or backpacks
find out about local customs and dress, behave accordingly and obey local laws - there may be
serious penalties for breaking a law that might seem trivial at home
be careful when taking photographs, videos or using binoculars. Such activities may be
misunderstood, especially near military installations
consider taking your mobile with you or renting one whilst you’re away. Store useful numbers
such as the local police and the nearest embassy or consulate
check with your service provider to make sure your phone works abroad
check whether it’s safe to drink local tap water - if not, stick to bottled water and avoid salads,
non-peeling fruit and ice in drinks
use your judgement when buying and eating food you’ve not prepared yourself
respect the environment – don’t buy wildlife souvenirs, conserve resources like water and don’t
drop litter
check import regulations for food and plants with Defra before you attempt to bring them back to
the UK
Women travellers
Travelling alone or with a couple of female friends can be a great experience. Unfortunately
women travellers can be targeted by criminals. Know how to avoid trouble.
When you’re out and about
think about how your clothing will fit in with local customs –
what are local women wearing?
don’t wear expensive jewellery
wear a wedding ring (even if you don’t normally) to help

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avoid harassment
be wary of new ‘friends’, even if they are fellow holidaymakers
don’t tell strangers where you are staying or give out too many details about your travel plans
if you’re travelling alone you may attract unwelcome attention and you may receive unwelcome
propositions or remarks – it is usually best to ignore them
act confidently
plan your daily itinerary - know where you’re going, what you’re doing and how to get back
some hotel and hostels have cards with contact details and directions – take one
never hitchhike or accept car rides from strangers
ask your hotel or hostel to recommend a taxi firm – try to pair up with someone you know when
travelling by taxi

If you ever feel uncomfortable or in danger, don’t be afraid to draw attention to yourself by
shouting and making a fuss.
In English-speaking countries you may receive more attention if you shout ‘fire!’ rather than
‘help!’
Going out at night
always tell someone where you are going and when you expect to return
be cautious of people who ignore your personal space, do not listen to you, make you feel guilty if
you resist their advances or appear drunk
carefully consider whether you should leave the pub, club or party with someone you have just
met
Drug-assisted rape or ‘date’ rape
Unfortunately, drugs are increasingly being used in rape.
Once someone has added drugs to your drink, you won’t normally be able to detect them. Rape
drugs can also work in non-alcoholic drinks, such as coffee and tea.
They are normally colourless and tasteless, and can make you virtually unconscious and
defenceless.
Never leave drinks unattended and its best not to accept drinks from strangers.
If you begin to feel strange, sick or drunk after only a couple of drinks tell a trusted friend. They
should take you to a safe place, such as your hotel room.
If you are alone, phone the local police, a hospital or the British Consulate. And always try to drink
responsibly - alcohol is the most frequently used drug in drug-assisted rape.
Stay safe in your hotel or hostel
only use your first initial and no title (‘Miss’, ‘Ms’ or ‘Mrs’) when checking in
never leave your key where someone can note your room number
don’t leave your window open, especially if your room is on the ground floor or has a balcony
remember to lock your room door even when you are inside the room
use a door wedge on the inside of your hotel room door for extra security
if the door has a spy-hole or chain, use these before opening the door to unexpected visitors
Check out our Travel Checklist for more general tips.
Travel checklist
We’ve put together this travel checklist to help you plan for your trip abroad and stay safe whilst
you are there. We’ve got more advice for specific types of travellers in our Travel advice relevant
to you section.
Before you go:
check our travel advice pages for the country you are visiting. Sign up for email alerts and you’ll
get the latest updates for that country
register with our LOCATE service so we can get in touch with
you if something goes wrong
find out where the nearest embassy will be – check their
website to find out what services they offer and their
opening times
don’t travel without insurance – make sure it covers you for
any activities you are likely to undertake such as extreme or
water sports
travelling within the EU? Then get a free European Health
Insurance Card for free or reduced emergency care - you still

10
need full travel insurance though!
check with your doctor as soon as possible to find out if you need any vaccinations before you
travel
make sure you’ve got correct visas for the country you are visiting and that your passport is valid.
All first time adult passport applicants must now attend an interview to verify their identity. It now
takes up to six weeks to get a first passport. For more information please visit www.ips.gov.uk
for certain countries your passport must be valid for 6 months after the date you travel – check
before you go
take photocopies of your passport and other important documents and keep these separate from
the originals when you travel and/or store them online using a secure data storage site.
make sure you fill in the emergency contact details in your passport. This will make it much easier
for us to contact someone if necessary
tell a friend or relative where you are going and for how long for - give them some idea of your
itinerary if possible and an emergency contact number
take enough money for your trip and some back-up funds in a mix of cash and travellers cheque -
make a note of the cheques’ numbers before you go
invest in a good travel guide to help you plan your trip
driving abroad? Make sure your licence is current and valid. Make sure you are aware of the
driving laws in the country you are visiting
When you are away:
think about what you are doing at all times and trust your instincts - don’t take risks that you
wouldn’t at home!
don’t openly display valuables such as mobile phones or
digital cameras and consider using a padlock on suitcases or
backpacks
find out about local customs and dress, behave accordingly
and obey local laws -there may be serious penalties for
breaking a law that might seem trivial at home
be careful when taking photographs, videos or using
binoculars. Such activities may be misunderstood, especially
near military installations
consider taking your mobile with you or renting one whilst
you’re away. Store useful numbers such as the local police
and the nearest embassy or consulate
check with your service provider to make sure your phone works abroad
check whether it’s safe to drink local tap water- if not, stick to bottled water and avoid salads, non-
peeling fruit and ice in drinks
use your judgement when buying and eating food you’ve not prepared yourself
respect the environment – don’t buy wildlife souvenirs, conserve resources like water and don’t
drop litter
check import regulations for food and plants with Defra before you attempt to bring them back to
the UK

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