Travel can be risky in many ways.  Do your homework on the places you plan to visit and you’ll likely cut down on some of that risk.

If you’re a U.S. citizen, it’s advisable to register your travel plans with the U.S. Department of State.  So they can better assist you during an emergency, register the address and phone number of where you’ll be staying and emergency contact information for family and friends.  Print out a copy of the address and phone number of the Embassy or Consulate where you will be staying and keep this with you at all times during your trip.

The U.S. Department of State encourages U.S. citizens who are planning a trip abroad to sign up for their Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP).  STEP is a free service provided by the U.S. Government to U.S. citizens or nationals who are traveling to or living in a foreign country.  The Department of State is bound by privacy laws and will not release personal information about you to third parties without your written consent.

When you enroll in STEP, the Department of State can keep you up to date with important safety and security announcements.  You can also sign up to receive emails about travel warnings, alerts and other information about specific countries.

Your enrollment will make it easier for the Embassy to contact you in the event of an emergency.  To sign up for an individual or organization account, visit the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program at