What should you do if a country that you are planning to go to has military coup?
On the evening of July 15th, 2016 the Turkish military attempted to overtake the government. Tanks rolled into the airport halting flights, artillery fire and explosions were heard in Istanbul and Ankara, and all social media and TV broadcasts were blocked. All the makings for serious instability and unrest.
Rob and I are supposed to fly into Istanbul on the 20th.
So if you find yourself in this same position, going to Turkey or anywhere else that is experiencing sudden instability, these are the steps you should be taking.
Follow the news
Make sure you know what the situation is up to the minute, things can change very quickly and you are going to want to know if the situation is getting better or worse. Also make sure you are checking different new sources. Even though journalism is supposed to be unbiased facts can get spun to serve the interest of any given outlet, so make sure you are getting all the facts and all the angles.
Check in with your airlines
Find out if your airline is offering free or discounted cancellations or changes for your flight. In the event that you decided not to go it’s good to know if you’ll be able to get a refund on the flight you purchased, or be able to change it to go somewhere else.
Get in touch with your hotel or accommodations
You will also want to see if you’ll be able to get a partial or full refund should you decide to change your plans.
Check the State Department Website
Travel.State.Gov will have any official warnings about any areas. It’s also a good place to get information if you are already in an area when things get weird.
All situations are different, but when something like this interrupts your travel plans you need to be able to make smart and informed decisions about what to do. Take everything into account and don’t compromise your safety just because you really want to go.
Stay safe out there!