If things go wrong

The first thing to remember is DON'T PANIC  

If you discover that your bag is lost or stolen you should:

Report your credit cards as being lost or stolen to your bank. Your bank does not have to cancel your cards immediately. They can place a temporary block on your cards, giving you time to look for them. All banks have addresses and numbers on the internet but it is a good idea to note them down and take them with you.

Contact the British Embassy and report your passport as being lost – Take with you your photocopies of the original documents or use the internet to print photocopies of your details.

Most street maps and guide books will have the details and locations of the British Embassy in the major city nearest to where you are staying.

All British Embassy details are available on the internet. UK Foreign and Commonwealth offices abroad: www.fco.gov.uk 

Ask if anyone saw anything helpful. If you are in a hostel or hotel, report it to reception and ask them to contact the police.

Some hotels have CCTV and they might have caught the incident on camera.

Reception staff generally know the faces of most residents and know if someone looks suspicious.   

Contact the police yourself to see if anyone has handed in your lost items.

Local police will know how common the crime is and the chances of getting the items back.

Take time for yourself to think about what has happened and know you can replace everything. Stay calm.

If you discover that your friend is potentially lost or missing you should:

Contact the local police as soon as possible – It is better to have a false alarm than to wait hoping they will return.

Police station locations will be on local maps and guide books. Alternatively, you can ask a resident for directions.

Try to stay calm and think what they might have done, what kind of person they are and where they may have gone.

Think back over the last few days and retrace your movements. Locate the person's interests and favourite places.

Ask everyone you know in the area and ask if they have seen them; also, ask other residents where you are staying. 

Call their phone, call friends to see if they have been in touch. Keep trying! 

Search the local area, parks, pubs and local landmarks. Check where you were last night and ask if anyone remembers seeing them.

Don’t panic - most people are found unharmed or didn't realise you thought they were in trouble.