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No matter where your travels might take you, it is always important to invest in good travel insurance. A travel insurance policy will make sure you receive the best possible medical care if you are injured or fall ill and that neither you nor your family are held financially liable for the significant costs is you need to be repatriated. Travel insurance will also protect you from costs incurred from other misadventures such as cancelled flights or trains or lost and stolen baggage. In other words, travel insurance in absolutely critical. Especially when visiting the more unstable parts of the world, such as the Philippines.

Insurgent and Terrorist Activity

Frequent violent clashes between insurgent groups and the military in the south of the country have led the government to declare many parts of the country under states of emergency. Terrorist groups in the Philippines have the capacity and willingness to carry out attacks at anytime and at anyplace. Travellers should be extremely cautious when transiting through airports, bus terminals and train stations and when visiting sites of worship.

Violent Crime and Terrorism

Violent crime is unfortunately all too common in the Philippines. Gun crime is a serious problem, as is bag-snatching, random acts of violence, serious assaults, smash and grab raids and armed hold-ups. Foreigners are a common target for kidnap and extortion, especially in the coastal regions in the south where tourists and other travellers have been taken from buses and other forms of public transport.

Health Concerns

Mosquito borne diseases such as malaria and dengue fever are widespread. Cholera and typhoid are endemic and are contacted via tainted water sources. Any case of diarrhea should be seen to be a medical professional as soon as possible. Reports of deaths from rabies are common. Medical care is very expensive in urban areas, very scarce in the countryside and the likelihood of the necessity of medical repatriation for serious illness and trauma is very high.

Unsafe Public Transport

If at all possible, avoid using local ferries due to safety concerns and the risk of piracy. Philippine airlines are banned from operating within the European Union due to unsafe practices and insufficient security measures. Local taxi’s can be dangerously unroadworthy and the risk of kidnap and ransom as alluded to earlier is a very real concern.

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