Contact Us
Theresa Cann
Assistant Dean, Director of International Education
Phone: 610-526-5375 Undergraduate Dean's Office
Eugenia Chase Guild Hall, Lower Level

Health and Safety Abroad

Safety Precautions Abroad
Health and Safety Resources

Safety Precautions Abroad

When a student is alone in another country, they need to be prepared for any crisis, whether it is an illness, accident, violent crime, terrorist attack, natural disaster, or political unrest.

    • In case of an emergency you should contact the on-site program director or relevant university staff immediately.
    • Notify Dean Cann at 610-526-5735 or  If the emergency happens outside normal business hours, please call BMC Campus Safety at 610-529-7911.

General Safety Precautions Abroad

    • Do not leave your bags or belongings unattended at any time. Security staff in airports and train stations are instructed to remove or destroy any unattended luggage. Do not agree or carry or look after any packages or suitcases for anyone. Make sure no one but you puts anything in your luggage.
    • Do not keep all your documents and money in any one place. It’s best to carry your travel documents and some money on your person in a place inaccessible to others even when you go to the bathroom on the plane.
    • Keep a photocopy of your passport and visa separate from the original.
    • If you find yourself in uncomfortable surroundings, try to look as if you know what you’re doing, and stay in well-populated areas. Try not to draw unnecessary attention to yourself.
    • Always show respect for the culture and laws of other countries.
    • Use caution when traveling alone. Do not walk alone at night. Be responsible for your safety and well-being. Learn from locals what behavior might put you at risk.
    • Keep the on-site director(s) informed of your whereabouts and any health problems. When you travel, be sure that someone knows where you are and how to reach you.
    • Have cash or credit card on hand for emergencies like illness or an unexpected need to get home.
    • Be alert to your surroundings and the people with whom you have contact. Be wary of people who seem overly friendly or interested in you. Be cautious with new acquaintances don’t give out your address or phone number, and always meet in public places. Be discreet in giving out information about other students or group events. Report unusual activity near your classes or home to the program director.
    • Don’t hitchhike, even if the locals do.

Safety Precautions in Times of Political Conflict Involving the United States:

    • Stay apprised of the current political situation by listening daily to the television or radio news. In the event of emergency, advisories may be made to the general public through the media. In this situation, stay in contact with the on-site staff, who then can contact authorities locally and at home, as well as parents and Bryn Mawr College.
    • The on-site director should register all participants with the nearest American Embassy or Consulate, and students should be sure they are so registered.
    • Ask your on-site program director about program emergency/contingency plans.
    • Always consult with the on-site director before making travel plans.
    • In large cities or popular tourist destinations, spend as little time as possible in potential targets for terrorist activities, especially places frequented by Americans: bars, discos, fast-food restaurants and stores associated with the US, branches of US banks, American Express, and US consulates and embassies.
    • Keep away from areas known to have concentrations of residents aligned with interests unfriendly to the US and its allies.
    • Be inconspicuous in dress and demeanor. Avoid American logos and name brands on clothing and belongings. Avoid large or noisy groups. Do not flash money or bring out documents (especially your passport) in public places. Keep small bills in your pockets to pay for purchases.
    • Keep away from political demonstrations, particularly those directed toward the US. If you see a situation developing, resist the temptation to satisfy your curiosity or join the crowd. Walk away.
    • Do not agree to newspaper or other media interviews regarding political conflicts.
    • Make a personal communication plan with your family and decide on methods of contact should an emergency arise.

Health and Safety Resources