Keep Sailors Safe When They Travel Abroad

Question: What kind of guidelines should a captain have for a crew traveling abroad?

Answer: In recent years many of our clients have asked our assistance in developing guidelines for international travel. In response to this need, we have developed the following considerations to make all crew aware of before they embark on that overseas business trip:

  • For international travelers, include the phone and location of the closed United States Embassy or Consulate. For that information, visit
  • Be sure that you have a profile on every crew member traveling either overseas or among the states. Update all traveler profiles to include cell numbers, pager numbers and home contact information.
  • Keep a hard copy of traveler itineraries; don’t rely on electronic access.
  • Increase pressure on travelers booking outside the corporation to use the preferred travel agency for better tracking purposes.
  • Print emergency contact numbers on all travel itineraries or confirmations.
  • Share your itinerary with at least one of your business colleagues as well as your family members.
  • Advise all parties of changes to your travel plans.
  • Photocopy the first page of your passport. Carry one copy with you along with extra passport photos and leave one at home or the office. This will make it easier to replace your passport if lost.
  • For international travel, be aware of how to make long distance and emergency calls.
  • Check security advisories in the country you are visiting. You can do this online by visiting
  • Have two forms of identification in separate locations. Carry and medical information with you that may be required should you be injured and incapacitated.

International travel policies can differ, depending on which countries are visited and the length of the trip. Whether or not a separate travel policy has been established, the primary policy should cover such important international travel issues as passport and visa acquisition, health certificates, security and where to turn in case of an emergency.

As a general rule when traveling abroad, we recommend keeping a low profile and dressing to blend in rather than attracting attention.

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