TRAVEL SAFETY BRIEFING
This section provides a brief overview of key things to consider when you will be traveling for research, reporting or any journalistic work.
The following Top Tips, Gear List and Resources represent a brief introduction to these safety concerns for traveling while on editorial or news assignment. The information and resources are not comprehensive nor do they offer sufficient preparation for any war or conflict zone. We encourage you to review the more expansive list of resources in the keyword-searchable J-SOS Safety Resource Database.
You are traveling from Spain to Egypt while working on a long term project about contested water borders as a freelance video journalist for a wire agency. You are traveling alone from the airport to the hotel you have booked but will be meeting another local journalist and a translator, both of whom you are unfamiliar with, at the hotel. The three of you will be working together for the week of the assignment.
- Are visas required? Are there local news orgs and political factions who may need to know you're in the country?
- Try to book a room on the second floor with two beds. Consider who has keys to the room and who knows where you’re staying? Use keyhole covers and door stoppers when in the room.
- Do you have trusted/vetted transport from airport to hotel? Be conscious of not talking on the phone while in taxis or giving away any key details about your lodging, assignment, etc. while among the general public.
- Who is driving the team for the assignment? What are your available comms while on assignment? Who will you be checking in with and how often? How remote are the locations you'll be traveling to in the region?
- What are the risks of the assignment (i.e. the key players of contested water sources?) *Review civil unrest briefing for more details on this
- Be aware of your high profile with camera gear. Avoid taking it out until necessary.
- Are there language barriers and how will you address that? Consider learning a few phrases in the local language, connecting with a translator and/or having a translation app ready on your mobile device.
- How do you engage the people you’re reporting on in ways that will support your safety? (i.e. informed consent, transparency about journalistic practices)