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Home » Travel Tips

Victims of Crime Abroad

Submitted by on 31/05/2013 – 1:30 amNo Comment
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Policeman on London Bridge

Photo from Flickr by Donna_Rutherford

Becoming a victim of crime is always unpleasant, but doubly so when it happens abroad. Apart from the fact that it is likely to spoil your holiday, it can be intimidating to have to deal with police and other public bodies in a system that is alien, and in an unknown language. There is also the issue that police in other countries may be unhelpful or may not investigate the case as well as could be hoped. In some countries where corruption is widespread, you may have to hand over some cash before you see anything such as a crime report.

Many British travellers may not realise that they are lucky enough to have the Foreign Office at hand in case of emergency. As part of the British Embassy abroad, it is dedicated to looking after British people who have become victims of crime. The British Embassy has outposts in almost every country in the world, so is in a position to deal with issues arising from crime on the victim’s behalf. There are various things that this section of the Embassy will do on behalf of travellers.

In case of an emergency situation or becoming a victim of crime, the first thing to do is to contact the Office. Where necessary, it will arrange lawyers and interpreters who will be able to help you make holiday compensation claims whether it’s to your insurance company or to a third party insurer.

The Embassy will also be in a position to contact relatives and friends of the victim in the UK, and informing them of the situation, as well as easing their minds and keeping them up to date with what’s going on. In some cases, they will be able to organise the transferring of money from family or friends in the UK, for example if a robbery has occurred and the victim has been left with nothing. They are also able to cash cheques for holidaymakers into the local currency.

The Embassy has limitations, of course, and it should not be expected that they will give general financial help, or be able to get involved with the outcome of criminal trials. Neither will they be able to give legal advice. However, British lawyers are on hand to do this even when crimes have occurred abroad.

Any Brits looking to set off on a backpacking trip should note the contact information for the Foreign Office somewhere accessible, such as in an email. Leave loved ones at home with the same number so that in case there’s a national emergency or natural disaster in some area where you’re travelling, they’ll be able to know if you’re okay. Use the sources at your disposal!

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Blanche has written 758 articles. +Aaron Bradford is the leader, mentor and chief geek of HappyTimeblog. He put together the crack team of writers known by codename “The Firm“. He's a permanent traveller and a lifestyle hacker. Wanna know more? Check out my Bucket List or my About page... I'm here to show you how to live a Life Less Ordinary

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