Things to do before you go on that riding tour
So you took our advice and are going on a riding tour through IndoChina. You’ve packed light, booked flights and after hours of scouring the world wide web, finally found a legit tour motorcycle rental you’re comfortable with.
Everything on your pre-tip list has been checked, except…have you prepped yourself? You may feel at your fittest, and perhaps can’t even remember the last time you caught a cold. But when travelling through more hot, humid and tropical countries, it’s always better to safe than sorry and make sure that along with your most prized riding and navigation gear, you’ve got the right medication and medical documentation handy.
Preparation: immunizations, medications
Regardless of where you are traveling, find out if you need specific immunizations bfore hand. A host of websites offer guidance on what kind of immunisation you’d need when travelling to a specific country.
Next, buy enough of the right medication to bring with you. This could include antihistamines, allergy pills, anti-diarrheal medication lightweight dressings, antibacterial ointments, hand sanitisers etc. You’v spent a lot of time and money on planning your ride, it’d be a shame to let one bad meal or an airborne bug ruin it.
Double (maybe even triple) check with your insurance company to see if they cover medical care in say, Northern Thailand. If they don’t, then look for companies that offer travel medical insurance. This is especially important if you’re travelling solo because in the event of a medical emergency, you’ll have the security you need to seek treatment without the hassle of figuring out to settle the bill afterwards.
If you need to be flown to the United States or a closer suitable location for emergency care and do not have travel medical evacuation insurance, costs may reach over $150,000 for a fixed-wing medical transport to the United States or a mere $70,000 to Paris. Providers with whom you directly contract for air evacuation service, such as AirMed, International SOS, or Global Rescue, help guarantee high quality airframes and medical providers en route. Otherwise, aircraft and provider quality may be highly variable and is often contracted through a broker using a bidding process where your evacuation care is generally not awarded to the highest bidder.
Getting Back On The Grid
Use a satellite-based GPS tracker and attach it to you (most are around 4 ounces in weight), not your rental bike or gear. Many are available, including the Spot 3 Gen-3 Messenger Personal Tracker. Such a device allows you to be tracked, as well as call for help. Affixing a card in the local language that reads “Press here in case of emergency” next to the “help” or “SOS” button enables someone to help you when you cannot help yourself.