The invasion of Iraq, SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome), conflict in many countries—you could always travel by remote-control from the comfort of your big-screen TV.
Clearly, it would be unwise to venture into the Persian Gulf at the moment, or to some parts of Asia if you are concerned about contracting SARS (you may want to consider staying out of certain Toronto hospitals too if that is a worry). But there are still relatively safe places to travel, work or volunteer abroad. Don't pull the plug on your plans just yet, but make sure you do a little looking into what's happening where.
Here's a short list of resources that can help you to make your travel decisions:
Department of Foreign Affairs Travel Information and Advisory Reports
Travel reports, updates, heads-ups.
Health Canada, Travel Medicine
International Association for Medical Assistance to Travelers (IAMAT)
Advises travellers of health risks, geographical distribution of diseases, immunization requirements for all countries, and makes competent medical care available to travellers around the world.
The Centre for Disease Control
World Health Organization
Tons of up-to-date information, including health conditions, crime rates and the availability of medical services.
US Department of State Travel Warnings
Info about travel requirements, safety considerations, medical facilities... you name it.
Complicated language, but up to date info on something you don't want.
Also, check out www.crazydogtravel.com for loads of information about what to take, where to take it, and how to take it there. A great resource!
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