The world travel and tourism industry is making a comeback and revival after going through a very difficult and challenging global pandemic crisis from 202o to 2022 that severely impacted the travel, tourism, aviation and hospitality industries around the world. Travellers, whether family, small group, individuals, young and old, we are all making a beeline to travel out again after travel restrictions and lockdown are gradually lifted in 2022. Youth travellers are part of the different travellers segments that make up the vast and diverse travel and tourism community. However, youth travellers have a lower risk of cognitive and are more likely to adopt risk-taking attitudes in their travels, based on on several studies such as from Akritidis et al., Cui et al., and Han et al. With the rise of international travel over the last year, International SOS has announced a podcast series to address health and safety concerns related to youth independent travel, to guide them on good habits and tips to travel safely.
Safeguarding Tomorrow’s Future by International SOS
The International SOS podcast is titled “Safeguarding Tomorrow’s Future”, experts from International SOS will share their insights on travel risks that youths may be more susceptible to, and how to prevent or mitigate those risks. There will be six episodes that will be launched on a weekly basis starting from 15th May 2023.
Lim Hui Ject, International SOS’ Managing Director (Singapore & Brunei), says: “We recognise the many risks associated with youth independent travel and we are glad to be able to step in and offer guidance through our subject matter experts. We have seen a rise in international travel with international trips in the last eight months surpassing the average monthly number of international trips in pre-COVID times. With the overall increase in international travel, we also expect this to include an increase in youth travel as well. With COVID-related restrictions preventing youth from travelling for so long, we worry that their excitement may cloud their decision making when it comes to their travel plans. As a pioneer and leader in international health and security risk management, we would like to act to help guide young travellers, as they begin exploring travelling independently.”
Social Media Impacts and Influence on Youth Travellers
Youth travellers are less likely to think through the potential risks of their travel plans in depth and are easily influenced by social media. Studies by Condor Ferries, a ferry and cruise company in the UK, found that 90 per cent of them have their international travel decisions influenced by social media content. Furthermore, many youths will be travelling for the first time without their parents or teachers to look out for them. Their lack of exposure in travelling independently results in them having less experience in managing any potential risks by themselves.
Dr Low Kiang Wei, Medical Director (Singapore), International SOS adds: “As highlighted in International SOS’ Risk Outlook 2023, looking beyond COVID-19, emerging global issues, such as rising levels of social unrest and the growing impact of climate change, are an additional dimension of worry for youths exploring independent travel. As these issues are likely to stay for the long term, we must equip our youths with the necessary capabilities to deal with these issues.”
The podcast will also feature local university students who have recently gone on overseas trips and are willing to share more about their travel experiences. The series will cover six topics with relevant subject matter experts addressing the risks associated with these topics.
Bala Selvam, Regional Security Manager, International SOS, adds: “By getting the youths to highlight their own experiences and concerns over six different topics, it allows the subject matter experts to address real risks based on the youths’ authentic experiences. It also ensures that youths are provided with holistic advice through the different topics and episodes. This helps the youth to address their checklist of concerns as they plan for their first independent trip.”
International SOS Podcast on Expert Tips for Safe Independent Youth Travel
To help youths travelling independently in a safe manner, International SOS has six episodes covering the following topics below:
- Staying Safe While Saving Money – Dissecting traditional and shared economy options for travel accommodation and transportation with the focus on how young people can balance staying safe while saving money.
- How Extreme Weather Puts Your Trip At Risk-What you need to know about health and safety risks of natural disasters and extreme weather
- Caught Up In Crowds– Keeping yourself safe in crowded environments, know the signs and how to protect yourself.
- Let’s Party Safely– The medical and security risks of substance ingestion, such as alcohol and drugs, while overseas.
- Mental Wellness While Abroad– Unpacking the emotional journey of going abroad to a new environment – how one can cope and seek support.
- When Sharing Becomes Dangerous– The potential dangers of sharing of personal details and itinerary while abroad, both online and offline.
Catch the International SOS Podcast on Expert Tips for Safe Independent Youth Travel on:
- Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/episode/2nv8D3LOTpvl9tt5ahT80v
- Apple Music: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/episode-1-staying-safe-whilst-saving-money/id1613327018?i=1000609332688
- International SOS’ website: https://www.internationalsos.com/podcast/safeguarding-tomorrows-future
Youth Travellers – Sharing is Caring!
In this digital and social media age, youth travellers are at the top on this age of digital and social media, hands on and well-immersed in the fields of digital and social media usage. Remember to share about Expert Tips for Safe Independent Youth Travel by International SOS with your fellow youth travellers through your social networks and social media platforms – Sharing is Caring!
To all youth travellers planning and seeking your own travel adventure around the world, remember to take note of those safety tips while you are travelling around the region or around the world, seeking unique YOLO experiences, growth, learning and fun.
* Information courtesy of International SOS and Black Dot *