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HEALTH & SAFETY IN THE USA

HEALTH
The Department of Health does not make any specific health recommendations for visitors to the USA. However, you may also like to check with your doctor before departure. The United States has no national health service and no reciprocal health agreement with the UK, so you must have full medical insurance to cover the cost of any possible treatment required. For example, if hospitalised, charges may typically be $1000-$2000 per day. 
 
If you are planning on taking any medications with you on your holiday it is advised that you also carry a doctor’s certificate in order to avoid any problems with customs. There are also stringent rules on what liquids are allowed in hand baggage luggage on planes and this particularly has implications for anyone carrying vital medication or those travelling with babies. Please check with your airline for details of what they will and will not accept onto the aircraft, both well before and just prior to travelling.

Some hospitals may ask non-US residents to pay a deposit or ‘good faith’ payment upon admittance. Any requests for funds should be directed to your travel insurance provider in the first instance; you should only pay the hospital if you are advised to do so by your travel insurance company. Your level of medical care won’t be affected while your claim is being processed.  
 
WATER
Mineral water can be bought, but all tap water is drinkable unless marked otherwise.
 
Worldwide Motorhoming Holidays offer fully comprehensive medical and personal holiday insurance for peace of mind while you’re away. 
 
SAFETY
While the USA is a stunning and remarkable country to visit and most Americans are among the most welcoming, hospitable and polite people you are likely to meet anywhere, it is sensible to be aware of the following:
 
  • As with anywhere in the world, it is good practise to be vigilant about your property, both in terms of your motorhome and personal belongings, take sensible precautions to protect yourself from petty crime.
  • Avoid leaving your door open at any time when your vehicle is unattended.
  • Avoid wearing expensive jewellery and carrying valuable items in run-down areas.
  • Do not sleep in your vehicle by the roadside or in rest areas.
  • Avoid leaving valuable items on display in your vehicle.
  • Try to stay on main roads and use well-lit car parks.
  • If hit from behind while driving, indicate to the other driver to follow you to a public place and call 911 for police help.
  • Don’t leave your handbag or luggage unattended. Leave copies of important documents with family and friends in the UK. Carry a photocopy of your passport for ID.
  • Keep relatives informed of your intended itinerary and be sure to top up your fuel and water before travelling into sparsely populated areas.
 
TERRORISM
The US department of Homeland Security operates a colour code system (green-blue-yellow-orange-red) for its assessment of the current terrorist threat to the country. You can see the current level and learn more about the meaning of the various alert levels by visiting the Homeland Security website. You should also monitor news reports before and during your trip to the USA.
 
As in any other country, you should be particularly vigilant in high-profile public places and report anything suspicious immediately to the authorities.
 
Please remember that the above information is intended to inform rather than to alarm and applies to a country that occupies much of a continent. Around four million British visitors per year enjoy a wonderful, trouble-free stay in the USA.