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Travel Alert for Europe

Wednesday, March 23, 2016 - The U.S. Department of State has issued a Travel Alert for Europe. Alerts are issued for short-term events the U.S. Department of State believes travelers should be aware of when planning to visit a specific country or region of the world. In this most recent alert, the Department of State has not advised individuals to defer travel, but cautions travelers to remain vigilant when in public areas and using mass transit. An alert contrasts with a "warning," which is also issued by the Department of State, and signals that travelers should consider very carefully whether or not they should travel at all to a specific country.

At this time there are no plans to cancel or suspend Ohio State study abroad programs in Europe.Ohio State has sent information concerning the alert and additional safety planning guidelines to all students currently studying in Europe.

This information includes:

  1. Routinely monitor media and local information sources and factor updated information into personal travel plans and activities. Follow the pages for local security/police and news organizations on Twitter and other social media feeds.
  2. Be prepared for additional security screening and unexpected disruptions from local authorities.
  3. Carry ID (copy of passport) with you. Make sure to keep a cell phone fully charged and carry some small amounts of food and water in case of delays.
  4. Designate “shelter in place” plans. Identify locations in areas frequently visited, where you could go for safe harbor in the event of a localized incident. Have supplies of food and water in your accommodation to last multiple days.
  5. Establish a strong communication plan and protocol. Let others know where you are going and when you will return. Carry key contact information with you at all times.
  6. Know where the best medical facilities are located nearest to you, including if you travel to other destinations. Information about medical facilities and locations can be found at 
  7. Remain vigilant. Do no give out any personal information to anyone you do not know and be cautious about posting personal details or group plans in social media.
  8. Report anything or anyone that seems suspicious to local authorities and follow their instructions.
  9. Keep in routine touch with family and friends back home.

Ohio State will continue to monitor Department of State, the Overseas Security Advisory Council, foreign security agencies, the university's insurance providers and contacts on the ground to keep travelers notified and make potential determinations on any necessary itinerary adjustments. For additional information, please consult the Alerts and Warnings section of the U.S. Department website. You can also view security and safety information on the country information sheet for your current location by using the Learn About Your Destination feature. If there are any additional questions, please feel free to contact Dru Simmons, international risk manager, at simmons.541@osu.edu.