PERSONAL SAFETY & HEALTH: Please note that we always have 1-2 American physicians on tour with us. In addition, we do our best to make arrangements for students with allergies or health issues, and are present to see requests followed. Staff members on each tour bus will help with finding further medical attention if there is an emergency or if our tour doctor determines tests or other medical attention is needed. Water and food is safe in all the places we travel to. No immunizations are necessary to travel to Europe, but we do recommend the basics such as tetanus shot, etc. Any current concerns of flu, etc. are no different than in the U.S. Yes, just like at home, anything can happen - twisted ankle, pinched finger, reaction to bug bite, sore throat, fever, infection, appendicitis, injury, collapsed lung, fainting, low sugar, etc. It can and does occasionally occur. That is why we have our doctor on tour. Our tour members' health and safety are that important.
INTERNATIONAL SAFETY: After touring the past nine summers (post 9-11), we know all SOA tour members can attest that they felt very safe and comfortable traveling in Europe. The SOA Staff, most who have traveled dozens of times to Europe, agree that it seems as safe as ever. Being in Europe has been wonderful and the people are still very, very welcoming! Although we did make some changes to better the safety of our members, and airports and some other places have increased security, we felt no threat and received no negative reactions throughout our stay of any recent years. We can assure you that if we felt it were unsafe, we would alter the tour. Based on the last several years' tours, and on information from the state department and news, we do not anticipate any safety reasons to avoid Europe. Europe has been heavily visited by tourists (many American) over the past several years. It appears no less safe in Europe than in the U.S. The Europeans know that American individuals are not the same thing as American politics or foreign relations, etc. and therefore treat Americans as warmly as ever. As different issues arise in the international world, please be assured that SOA staff monitors and assesses each situation and location to be sure that it is safe.
For an extensive email outlining some of the safety measures we have taken to better ensure a safe tour, contact us.
Rick Steves, travel expert on Europe The well-known and well-liked American travel expert, Rick Steves, has a great website. SOA Staff members have always admired him and felt he is the most down-to-earth European expert in travel.
As a European travel guru who spends much time in Europe, with locals and American groups, Rick has posted a statement about travel today in Europe that may interest you. Please also read what some recent Americans have to say about Europe. To hear first hand what some American tourists are saying, please visit Rick Steves' website where he has a "graffiti wall", where recent travelers send their comments. These pages are specifically about traveling right now in Europe and what their reactions are as Americans.
Concerned about air travel? See this info in our FAQ pages. Click here
We thank the 1000's of Europeans and Americans for attending our concerts for sharing their concerns and caring about us, and for supporting those who gave their lives Sept. 11th, by purchasing our Tribute to 9/11 CDs. You have made a difference in our lives, and we hope we have and will continue to make a positive difference in your lives and in the world. May there be Peace on Earth.
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page created 11-27-02