Travel Risk Management & Specialist Risk Consulting

How I Escaped From Europe Without An Emergency Evacuation Plan


May 25th, 2020   Christopher Elliott

No one thinks about an emergency evacuation plan when they book a vacation. So when my Medjet membership came up for renewal late last year, I couldn't have imagined being airlifted back to the United States during a pandemic. And I never thought a team of professionals would help me escape from Europe.

But they did. A few days ago, I found myself on the move and closely watched. I'd just boarded a flight from Nice, France, to Paris with my three teenage kids.

My phone buzzed:

"Good Morning Mr. Elliott, we’re reaching out to confirm if you have boarded your flight for Paris."

Yes, I replied to the ops center. I was on the plane. And my kids and I faced a 22-hour trip from southern France to the Pacific Northwest. Four flights, three stopovers — and a lot of messages from a company called FocusPoint International, which handles the security evacuations for Medjet.

What is an emergency evacuation?

Several companies offer emergency evacuation services. Although most of them specialize in medical evacuations, Global Rescue and International SOS also offer crisis response services such as evacuations and repatriations. You can also purchase an insurance policy from a company like Cavalry Elite Travel Insurance, which gets you home if you're hospitalized or caught in a dangerous situation 100 miles or more from home. FocusPoint's mission — to identify threats, mitigate risks, and respond to crises — may seem a little amorphous. But in plain English, they'll get you out of Dodge when you need it.

Read full article at Forbes.com