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Survey Reveals Civil Unrest and Terrorism Now Top Concerns for Global Travelers in 2024.In an era where adventure beckons the intrepid traveller, a new spectre looms large over the allure of distant horizons. A recent survey conducted in the winter of 2024 by Global Rescue, a travel risk management pioneer, unveiled a pivotal shift in the psyche of the world’s most seasoned voyagers. The Global Rescue Traveler Sentiment and Safety Survey reveals that the fear of civil unrest and terrorism now eclipses traditional concerns of accidents and illnesses, marking a significant transformation in traveller priorities since the spring of 2023.

A staggering 36% of respondents now cite civil unrest and terrorism as their paramount worry when embarking on international journeys, a threefold increase from the previous year. This surge in apprehension overshadows the previous leading fear of accidents or illnesses, which has decreased to 25% from a hefty 50% in spring 2023.

Dan Richards, CEO of The Global Rescue Companies and a distinguished U.S. Travel and Tourism Advisory Board member at the U.S. Department of Commerce, sheds light on this evolving trend. “The world is witnessing a palpable rise in traveller concern amidst the escalating threats of civil unrest, war, and terrorism. Despite these daunting challenges, the spirit of exploration remains unbroken, with travellers continuing to venture abroad, albeit with heightened caution,” he elucidates.

In response to these growing fears, travellers are increasingly fortifying their safety nets. A notable 34% of those surveyed are considering the inclusion of security advisory and extraction protection in their travel plans, influenced by the ongoing war in Ukraine and the recent Hamas attacks on Israel. This precautionary measure underscores the growing demand for emergency medical and security services, a sector that Richards notes has witnessed a 36% uptick in service uptake last year, with expectations of a continued rise through 2024.

Beyond the fears of unrest and terrorism, the survey highlights other concerns that prey on the traveller’s mind. Trip cancellation, robbery, theft, and the risk of testing positive for COVID-19 or its variants are among the worries that travellers face, albeit to a lesser extent.

This seismic shift in travel safety concerns is a testament to the changing landscape of global travel. As adventurers continue to quench their thirst for exploration, the emphasis on comprehensive travel protection has never been more critical. The Global Rescue Traveler Sentiment and Safety Survey of Winter 2024 not only maps out the current state of traveller anxieties but also charts a course for the future of travel, where safety and security stand as the paramount concern.

In the face of these changing dynamics, the call to adventure remains undiminished but with a new companion: a heightened sense of vigilance and preparedness. As the world navigates through tumultuous times, the resilient spirit of the traveller adapts, ensuring that the journey continues and does so with an informed and cautious stride.




Written by: Michelle Warner