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How do you deal with fear of terrorism when traveling?


by @antonioevans | 4yr  | 11 comments

I do not want to be an โ€œalarmistโ€ but today we had a recent major bombing at an airport & subway in Brussels. A few months back there was Paris. I am currently on my European part of this years trip and it is on my mind.

There are many places that are off the map for Digital Nomads and for good reason. Safety due to war or major crime. I am talking places like Syria, parts of Iraq, few islands in Philippines, a few province in Mexico, El Salvador, etc. But places that arenยดt historically unsafe do causes concern to people, specifically your back home family&friends.

As a traveler how do you deal with terrorism or major crime when it is around where you are visit? Also secondly how do you deal with at home messages from family members.

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@antonioevans | 4yr

That was my question in the body. The title does say fear but I think you are slightly reading it wrong or it comes off as being specifically that way. Anywayโ€ฆ Your stats have lots of issues.

  1. assumption that statistically we as Digital Nomads are not outliers. We are. I get on 20 planes, 20-30 trains and stay in exotic places annually. Average person who is part of your stat lives in 1 place. Does way less travel then that.

  2. Terrorism should be really changed to crime. Sorry for that Yes a bombing can be politically motivated but many smaller acts of crime do not get put into that statistic I assume. Are the organized Mafia muggings Naples added to that? What about kidnapping in parts of Mexico? What about shake downs when driving in parts of Guatemala. All similar.

Looking at statistics definitely do help you gauge reality but if they are looked incorrectly it can also skew realty.

Anyway to answer my own question, I do like @kathrynoh I put out on FB I am livingโ€ฆlol.

During the earthquake in Japan I wasโ€ฆin Japan. Got calls and emails. I just decided not to take them all and Just put out Gif on FB saying I am living and fine.

Back in the day I was also in Sept 11th downtown on business. Facebook wasnโ€™t around. Ended up walking uptown and using a Payphone (can you believe that) and calling my mother. She was the hub of social media at the time. :slight_smile:

Recently a friend was shot during Bataclan. Major concert goer and DN his wife called me and I told her to just do a FB post. She did and got hundreds of messages.

Anyway. Yeah use Social Media. 100%

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@kathrynoh | 4yr

Definitely higher risk with more travelling but Iโ€™m not sure if the actual destination (unless you are in a high risk area) puts you at more danger. The thing about terrorism is that it can happen anywhere. The surprise factor is key.

I wouldnโ€™t class all crime as being on the same level as terrorism. Muggings, bag snatching etc is pretty minor in the overall scheme of things.

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@srg_b | 4yr

I avoid places that are low security, and crowded with westerns, like Starbucks ie. Recently I decided not to visit a water park due to warnings by Australian government. Although later I realized how is anyone going to bring in a bomb since everyoneโ€™s in their bathing suits.

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@flyonthewall | 4yr

This writeup has some interesting statistics:

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@them | 4yr

I had to change plans 3 times in the last couple of months after Paris, first lockdown in Brussels and now the Brussels attacks. I still traveled to those places, but had to adapt to the situation.

I definitely do due diligence when traveling, but not only related to terrorism, since I go a lot to remote places. If you donโ€™t, its your choice but should not be promoted, especially not as some kind of attitude or life-style. Comparisons like the chance of being killed in a terrorist attack vs. the chance of being crushed by furniture are unproductive - There is always something that is less or more life threatening and there are tons of comparisons like x more people die of y every year then from z.

I am not saying one should worry - if you start worrying you ll probably never stop again - but you should somehow include the risks, including terrorism, in your travel plans. You donโ€™t travel to the middle east without checking the reports, you donโ€™t go on a trip in the Sahel without evaluating the situation, you donโ€™t go to the southeast of turkey without a plan etc. etc. and some parts of Europe are part of the areas one should at least quickly monitor before going. There are valid and official warnings regarding the security, including possible natural disaster, from governments, foreign ministries etc. that can be easily checked and these should be followed - not because we are afraid or because it will keep us all safe, but simply because it reduces the risks.

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@levelsio | 4yr

Well no, comparisons like that are productive:

you were FOUR times more likely to be struck by lightning than killed by a terrorist
http://bkpk.me/why-terrorism-should-not-stop-you-from-traveling/ (via @flyonthewall)

OP is asking how to deal with the fear, well the fear is highly irrational. Is OP scared of lightning all the time? No. So why terrorism? It doesnโ€™t make sense.

A good example. Iโ€™m from Amsterdam. The central station is probably a big target for terrorism now. Itโ€™s the most iconic place of the city with locals and travelers alike.

To be there at the same place if thereโ€™s a terror attack means I have to pick the right day and time. Since Iโ€™m only passing through there for about 5 mins in, then entering the train, or 5 mins out. It means I have a 5 of 1440 minutes per day chance in the day that terror strikes or 1 in 288. Now letโ€™s say nothing happens for a year and then one day a terror attack strikes. That means 1 in 288 * 365 days or 1 in 105,120. That is, if weโ€™re confident it will happen in the next 365 days which is also unlikely.

The risk of me dying in a car (even with a seatbelt) in a year is 1 in 17,625 (http://www.riskcomm.com/visualaids/riskscale/datasources.php).

Iโ€™m still 6x more likely to die in a car accident than a terrorist attack at the central station of my city which is a terrorist target ONLY if weโ€™re sure itโ€™s going to be hit this year.

Furthermore, outside of that โ€œthe chances of being killed in a terrorist attack are about 1 in 20 millionโ€ http://www.lifeinsurancequotes.org/additional-resources/deadly-statistics/

Why is it important to mention the statistics? Because itโ€™s rational. And it doesnโ€™t give us an emotionally skewed perspective on a highly unlikely scenario. Which in turns influences politics, war and the increase of a commercial security industry. The question is, do you want to highly armed guards everywhere? Do you want to live in a society like that? I donโ€™t.

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@wanderingdev | 4yr

I donโ€™t. The odds are higher that Iโ€™ll be killed in a traffic accident or shot by a mass shooter when Iโ€™m back in the USA than that Iโ€™ll get killed by a terrorist while traveling. Stuff happens all the time that you canโ€™t control. Worrying about it or fearing it is just a waste of energy.

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@chelseaannefox | 4yr

After the Brussels attack, I thought about it, for about 30 seconds. Even though I was about to leave Iceland for London, I didnโ€™t let it bother me. I was even in London during the 2005 bombings, and they were about 1 mile away from me at the time of going off. @levelsio and @kathrynoh had great points, there is danger everywhere and itโ€™s not just terrorism. Iโ€™m from Chicago, and I was jumped there 3 times in 2 years. The worst Iโ€™ve ever had in Europe is leaving my wallet on a London bus, drunkenly dropping my iPhone 6+ in a toilet in Reykjavik, missing trains/flights, etc. You canโ€™t predict terrorism, earthquakes, orโ€ฆer, furniture crushing :wink: I am a digital nomad and Iโ€™m DEATHLY afraid of flying, you just have to accept when itโ€™s your time, itโ€™s you time. Move on, and enjoy every day like itโ€™s your last. Thatโ€™s why we leave this lifestyle right?

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@jessehanley | 4yr

What happened in Brussels was horrible but how would someone have predicted what happened ahead of time to inform them not to go there?

These events are random and difficult to research into to make good travel decisions.

If youโ€™re optimizing your travels to be as safe as possible then visit countries that have a good reputation for being safe to visit. But even then things can go wrong, I mean back home Iโ€™ve been held up at knife point and that was in Sydneyโ€™s Northern Beaches which is super safe and never ran into any issues travelling like ever.

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@levelsio | 4yr

Youโ€™re more likely to be fatally crushed by furniture than killed by a terrorist

You could just as well ask how to avoid furniture when traveling.

And the other answer is, donโ€™t visit war zones. Seems very obvious :slightly_smiling:

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@kathrynoh | 4yr

Itโ€™s not something I really think about. Your safety isnโ€™t guaranteed anywhere in this world and you could be targeted anywhere including at home. There are a lot more risky things in this world.

I was living in Tokyo during the Tohoku earthquake and, I think the main thing is to get on social media and let family and friends know you are safe and settle immediate concerns. Outside of that, you canโ€™t manage other peopleโ€™s fears.

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Any suggestions for seamlessly receiving SMS Verifications from US financial institutions and other sites while traveling internationally continuously? Wonโ€™t keep my US Verizon account due to cost and currently plan to use local sims at each destination (T-Mobile and Project Fi are NOT an option as they terminate for continuous roaming). In summation, I wonโ€™t have a US mobile account.

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How to get SMS verifications for banks while traveling?

 

by @jackgopack | 22h 21 hours ago | 38 comments

Any suggestions for seamlessly receiving SMS Verifications from US financial institutions and other sites while traveling internationally continuously? Wonโ€™t keep my US Verizon account due to cost and currently plan to use local sims at each destination (T-Mobile and Project Fi are NOT an option as they terminate for continuous roaming). In summation, I wonโ€™t have a US mobile account.

Unless Iโ€™m missing something, which is very possible, this appears to be the single most complex issue Iโ€™ve encountered in my preparations, and one that no one addresses. I would greatly appreciate any possible solution that works 100% of the time. Canโ€™t afford surprises in this regard. Many Thanks! Jack.

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by @coffeeshopceo | 2d 1 day ago | 670 comments

tl;dr: introduce yourself in this thread.

We must all get sick of the same backpacker travel questions when we meet new friends, I know I do.

You know the ones - where are you from, whereโ€™ve you been, where are you going, what do you do, how long have you been doing it - etc.

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**

No need to answer them all if you donโ€™t want to :smile:
But the more you shareโ€ฆ The merrier!

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Best Place in South East Asia to stay for 6 months+ (Tax purposes)

 

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We're looking for a country in south east asia that can function as our base, mainly for tax purposes. Meaning it will have to be a place where we can stay for the 183 days required without too much hassle.

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Where do you work from in Lisbon? ๐Ÿงณโ˜•


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What are the best blogs by individuals who have started businesses in Southeast Asia?


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Admin edit: Fixed title for spelling & compliance with guidelines.

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My husband and I have residency in the state of Tennessee in the USA and my in-laws collect our mail for us there. We only pass through Tennessee about once a year.

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Iโ€™ve been traveling for over a year, and Iโ€™ve been working on 3 month contracts in locations abroad to sustain travel. I wanted to see what the community was like as far as digital nomads go. Are you trading your skills for $$$? and if so, how are you doing it?

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Hi!
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