Safest destinations to visit in 2020

  • Global
  • Sunday, 01 Dec 2019

Lake Bled in Slovenia, which is one of the safest countries to visit, according to International SOS. — AFP Relaxnews

Plotting out your travel plans for 2020? Before booking your flight, you may want to consult a new interactive map developed by a global risk firm which has identified the most dangerous travel destinations around the world.

In their Travel Risk Map, medical and security experts at International SOS have identified the riskiest countries for travellers in the coming year across categories like medical safety, security and road safety, colour-coding countries by level of risk.

Countries like Libya, Mali, South Sudan, Somalia, Syria, Afghanistan, Iraq and Yemen are among some of the countries that have been categorised under “Extreme Travel Security Risk”, where government control and law and order may be minimal or non-existent across large areas.

“Serious threat of violent attacks by armed groups targeting travellers and international assignees. Government and transport services are barely functional. Large parts of the country are inaccessible to foreigners.”

According to the map, the safest travel destinations where travel security risks are “insignificant” are Norway, Finland, Denmark, Greenland, Slovenia and Switzerland.

It’s not just political unrest, terrorism and petty crime that travellers should consider when choosing their destinations.

Some countries pose higher medical risks than others, be it limited or virtually non-existent healthcare, dental services or primary care; the prevalence of food and waterborne-infections; or hotspots for outbreaks of life-threatening infectious diseases like malaria or cholera.

Countries that carry “very high travel medical risks” include many of the same countries deemed most dangerous for security, including Libya, Somalia, Yemen, South Sudan, Iraq and Afghanistan.

Other medically unsafe countries include Niger, Burkina Faso, Sierra Leone, Liberia and Venezuela.

Predictably, Western and developed countries pose the least medical risk. – AFP Relaxnews

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