How to survive a terror attack: tips for the traveler

With terror attacks becoming sadly more commonplace in various destinations globally, it's important to know what to do to survive should you unfortunately become caught up in one.

Make yourself aware of a few tips on what to do if you're unfortunate enough to be caught up in a terror attack.

Surviving a terror attack

Travellers involved or close to a terror incident are advised to exercise heightened security awareness and to follow the directives of local authorities. Here are a few safety first tips:

  • Stay within the confines of your residence or accommodation.
  • Do not go out into the public streets.
  • Be alert to local news developments.
  • Adhere to any imposed curfews or security restrictions.
  • Be aware of conspicuous or unusual behaviour. Unusual behaviour and strange devices should be reported to the police or security personnel promptly.
  • If you are in a building located close to the site of a terrorist attack, stay away from the windows.
  • If in the vicinity of an attack, do not stay to watch what is happening, as you will only get in the way of the emergency services. There is also a risk that additional attacks may occur.
  • Make a mental note of safe havens, such as police stations and hospitals.



If there's a bomb blast

  • Leave the area as soon as possible
  • Do not run you may be suspected as the bomber. If you are in a crowd stay at the fringes.
  • Stay clear of glass shop fronts.
  • If you are injured attend to yourself before others.
  • Obey all instructions and orders that are given by local police.
  • Make your way to a pre planned secure area.
  • If you return to your hotel stay away from the windows.
  • Listen to television and radio reports.
  • Contact family or friends and let them know your situation.
  • Write down what you saw before and after the blast it may help the authorities in their investigation.

If you're injured in a terrorism attack

If you are injured or become ill please seek medical aid and contact your 24-hour Medical Assistance Service (numbers below).

Be aware that any functioning hospitals and clinics will be busy caring for large numbers of people who have been injured in the incident.

Preparing for potential terrorism

Before visiting a country where there is a risk of terrorism you should first obtain as much information on that country as possible.

  • When you arrive, stay away from those areas that may have been the target of terrorism in the past.
  • Identify the main tourist areas and stay away from those which appear less secure.
  • Make yourself aware of your surroundings. Be aware of the conduct of people near to you.
  • Stay away from large gatherings or demonstrations.
  • Know the telephone numbers of local police, hospitals and your Embassy.
  • If you are with friends identify a rendezvous point to meet should there be an incident.
  • Prepare a plan to evacuate should there be an incident.
  • Know the telephone numbers of local transport and hire car companies.

What do I do post-terrorism attack?

It is important to remember that the situation you are in can be extremely stressful.

Call home and your country's Consulate or Embassy to let them know where you are, if you are alright and if you need any assistance.

Keeping an item of comfort nearby, such as a family photo, favorite music, or religious material, can often offer comfort in such situations.

Call the emergency assistance hotlines should you need immediate attention.

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