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AXA Assistance And iJet International Enhance Partnership With Integrated Security And Medical Response Solution

AXA Assistance and iJET International, Inc. (iJET), global leaders in operational risk management solutions, medical assistance and emergency response, have announced an enhanced partnership agreement that will see combined security and medical response teams operating from service centres in the UK and other key regions across the globe.

The agreement will see iJET security and operational risk experts based within AXA Assistance UK headquarters in Redhill, Surrey providing a comprehensive, integrated security and medical response solution. The UK centre is one of three initial centres where AXA Assistance and iJET will be co-located. Basing an iJET team within the UK operation is aimed at further enhancing the partnership solution and building on the growing interest from UK businesses for a fully-integrated and seamless operational risk management solution. The AXA Assistance and iJET partnership, originally established in 2011, leverages AXA Assistance’s global medical assistance expertise and iJET’s intelligence, technology and security risk management capabilities to support global enterprises. Customers benefit from a single point of contact and integrated call centres, telephony and case management available 24/7.

“Business travel risk management is an important issue for organisations all over the world,” comments Tim Edwards, Business Development Manager, AXA Assistance UK. “Combining our expertise directly on-site in the UK and other key centres around the globe will allow us to work even more closely together to provide clients with a comprehensive global solution to assist their employees and ensure minimum disruption to their business operations.”

Will Faas, Major Accounts Director UK & Europe, iJET, comments: “Establishing a key operations team at the AXA Assistance UK service hub proves our commitment to offering top-level service to our combined clients and provides us with a base from which to demonstrate to key UK businesses the superior nature of our integrated offering. Now more than ever it is essential for organisations to protect their employees abroad, and we are very excited about expanding further in the UK, and indeed global, market.”


Armenia Travel Advice and Warnings

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) advise against all but essential travel in the area of the closed border between Armenia and Azerbaijan, particularly in the Tavush and Gegharkunik regions.

The FCO advise against all travel on the road between Ijevan and Noyemberyan, which passes close to the border. In April and June 2012, there were reports of ceasefire violations along the Armenia-Azerbaijan border which resulted in a number of deaths and casualties. The British Embassy can’t provide consular assistance or advice to visitors to the Nagorno-Karabakh region.

There is a low threat from terrorism.

In May 2012 a gay-friendly bar in downtown Yerevan was attacked and a diversity march in central Yerevan was disrupted by nationalist groups.

From 10 January 2013, British and EU passport holders no longer require a tourist visa to visit Armenia.

Take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance before you travel to Armenia.


United Arab Emirates Travel Advice and Warnings: Some OTC Medicines In The UK Are Considered Controlled Substances In The UAE

Around 1 million British nationals visit the UAE every year. Most visits are trouble-free. Take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance before you travel to the UAE.

Expatriates, Business Travelers and Tourists visiting the UAE, are advised to check if any medication they are prescribed, is considered a controlled substance in the UAE.

Some prescribed and over the counter medicines that are available in the UK are considered controlled substances in the UAE and can’t be brought into the country without prior permission from the UAE Ministry of Health. If you arrive in the UAE without this permission and the required documentation, the medication will not be allowed into the UAE and you may be prosecuted under UAE law.

For further information and specific queries, visit the website of the UAE Embassy in London and contact the Drug Control Department of the UAE Ministry of Health to check whether your medication is on the controlled list.


Australia Travel Advice and Warnings For Expatriates, Tourists and Business Travelers

Take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance before you travel. Over 590,000 British nationals visit Australia every year. Most visits are trouble-free.

Australia is prone to seasonal natural disasters including tropical cyclones, flash flooding, dust storms and bushfires (forest fires). Local authorities anticipate the 2013/14 bushfire season could be more dangerous than usual as the pre-conditions for bushfires have worsened in the past year.

Several large bushfires around New South Wales in October 2013 have resulted in two deaths, around 250 properties destroyed and another 130 damaged. Further severe weather conditions are forecast. A state of emergency has been declared, with communities on alert to evacuate at short notice. Check with State authorities for up-to-date information.

Australia is a vast country. You should plan journeys carefully, particularly if you’re travelling to remote areas, bushwalking or going swimming. You will need to get a visa before you travel. Beware of scam adverts claiming to help you extend a working holiday visa. Several British nationals have had their visas cancelled as a result.

Australia Travel Advice and Warnings For Expatriates, Tourists and Business Travelers


Pacific Prime Launches New Health Insurance Website

Pacific Prime, one of the leading distributors for international private medical insurance, has recently launched its brand new redesigned website for its clients.

“We've been in this industry a long time, and if there's one thing we've learned over the years, it's that you always have to think about the client first,” said Lead Web Designer Byan Shum.

By gathering feedback from clients and incorporating it into the redesign, the designers at Pacific Prime have been able to craft a website that lets clients more easily find the health insurance they need. The new website, which supports 10 different languages, has been designed to allow clients from all over the world to find information quickly. Clients can find information on all the insurers Pacific Prime works with, explanations of the different types of insurance plans, and travel advice for different countries all around the world.

The website also supports embedded videos from Pacific Prime's YouTube channel, where clients can find up-to-date insurance information in video format. Of all the features in the new website, the highlight is the new interactive quotation tool, where clients can quickly find a quote for a policy that's specific to their needs.

Pacific Prime has access to over 48000 policies from over 50 insurers, and the interactive quotation tool has been designed to allow clients to filter results easily. Some of the filtering criteria include premium range, region, insurance provider, currency, and benefits such as maternity, dental and pre-existing conditions.

Pacific Prime, who was recently awarded Bupa International's Top Global Distributor award for 2012-13, is an international insurance advisor that has been helping clients for over 15 years. The company's head office is located in Hong Kong, and has regional offices located elsewhere around the world including Shanghai, Singapore, and Dubai.

To see the redesigned website, visit

Pacific Prime Launches New Health Insurance Website


Liberia Travel Advice and Warnings: Muggings in the Sinkor Beach Area of Monrovia

The small British Embassy and Honorary Consul in Monrovia can only offer limited consular assistance. There is a low threat from terrorism. Take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance before you travel.

The FCO advise against all but essential travel to Grand Gedeh and River Gee counties where there have been reports of armed groups living near the border with Côte d’Ivoire. The ability of the national authorities and the UN to provide emergency help outside Monrovia is limited. Check the security situation before travelling to any part of the country.

Violent incidents, particularly in rural areas, are possible as a result of land disputes, illegal mining and occupation of rubber plantations.

Illegal rubber tappers have been responsible for a number of attacks on security forces in the Firestone rubber plantation. Avoid travelling away from the major routes within the plantation.

Organised groups of former combatants may be present in areas of the country where there is limited government and UN Mission in Liberia (UNMIL) presence, including Sinoe rubber plantation and Sapo National Park. The Samuel K Doe Stadium in Monrovia can become overcrowded during major football matches or events.

There is a high level of crime in Monrovia, including armed robbery. The Liberian National Police has very limited capability to prevent or detect crime, or to provide emergency response in any part of the country. Levels of crime are much higher after dark. Don’t walk anywhere in the city at night.

Take care when walking alone and only do so during daylight hours in areas frequented by foreigners. Most crime is opportunistic theft, but there are organised criminal gangs. Thieves are often armed with knives or machetes, but occasionally also carry firearms. While Liberians are the main victims of crime, the relative wealth of international visitors makes them an attractive target for criminals. Avoid carrying valuables in public and be vigilant at all times, especially at night.

Mobile phones and laptops are common targets of theft. Foreigners have been mugged in the Mamba Point and Sinkor areas of Monrovia (including Sinkor beach in broad daylight), where most international visitors stay. Be wary if you are approached by strangers. Criminals also operate in nightclubs and beaches.

Accommodation occupied by international workers has occasionally been targeted by burglars. Thefts have occurred in taxis. You should avoid local public transport. There is a high incidence of rape in Liberia and there have been cases of rapes and attempted rapes involving foreign women.

Take extra care when driving in heavy traffic or off the main roads. Consider your security arrangements carefully before your arrival in Liberia.

Make sure you are supported by a reliable organisation with a comprehensive and adequate security plan.

Stay only in reputable accommodation with adequate guarding and other security arrangements, and arrange for transport for the duration of your stay, including travel to and from the airport.

Roberts International Airport is around 30 miles from central Monrovia, much of the journey passing through rural areas.

Liberia Travel Advice and Warnings: Muggings in the Sinkor Beach Area of Monrovia



Cambodia Travel Advice: Next Mass Protest Will Take Place Over Three Days From 23-25 October 2013 Freedom Park Central Phnom Penh

105,000 British nationals visited Cambodia in 2012. Most visits are trouble-free but there have been reports of assaults and armed robberies against foreigners. There is a low threat from terrorism. Take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance before you travel.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) advise against all travel to the Preah Vihear (Khaoi Pra Viharn in Thai) temple area and the Ta Krabey/Ta Moan temple area located on the Thai-Cambodian border. Cambodia held its general election on 28 July in a mostly peaceful environment.

On Monday 29 July, the main opposition party announced it was disputing the results and has called for an investigation into alleged irregularities in the electoral process. From 15 to 17 September a mass opposition protest took place in Phnom Penh and some clashes occurred between police and protestors resulting in one death and several injuries. Small scale protests are ongoing in Phnom Penh and are likely to continue. There have been frequent roadblocks.

The opposition has announced that the next mass protest will take place over three days from 23-25 October. Although the protest will be based in Freedom Park in central Phnom Penh, the opposition plan to march to various embassies around the city, including the British Embassy on the morning of 24 October 2013.

You should expect road blocks, traffic congestion and a heavy police presence. There is a risk of confrontation between protestors and the security forces. Allow extra time for journeys, follow local media and avoid all public gatherings.

There have been a number of security alerts over recent weeks about small explosive devices found around Phnom Penh, the most recent on 13 September outside the National Assembly building.

There is wide scale flooding in Cambodia, including in some parts of popular tourist destinations like Phnom Penh, Siem Riep and Battambang. You should check the state of the roads and airport access before you travel and allow extra time for journeys.

Cambodia Travel Advice: Next Mass Protest Will Take Place Over Three Days From 23-25 October 2013 Freedom Park Central Phnom Penh


Squaremouth Launches Travel Insurance Products from APRIL Travel Protection

Squaremouth, America's fastest growing travel insurance comparison site, is proud to introduce APRIL Travel Protection as its newest travel insurance provider.

APRIL Travel Protection adds five new travel insurance policies to Squaremouth's growing product list, increasing the total number of available policies to 114. APRIL's policies are designed to enhance a 21st century travel experience with a range of insurance and assistance services, including Stress Less benefits and one touch support from anywhere in the world. APRIL offers concierge and assistance services that help travelers locate doctors and medical facilities, translate paperwork, re-book tickets and even schedule dinner reservations. In most cases, medical and travel-related emergencies can be immediately paid for by APRIL because of its Stress Less benefits approach. This means policyholders can avoid the inconvenience of filing claims and paying bills when they return home. Travelers can access their APRIL insurance and assistance services via Skype, live chat, text, email or phone while away from home.

APRIL's U.S. based call center specialists are equipped to communicate with a global network of contacts in over 100 countries.

"We believe that to successfully provide travelers with superior experience, we need to offer comprehensive and hassle-free travel insurance and assistance that doesn't stop with insuring the things we don't want to happen," says Philip Namiech, CEO of APRIL Travel Protection.


Interdean Welcomes New Job Opportunities for Expats in Qatar

According to Expat Forum, a new report has suggested that the nation’s population is estimated to grow to more than 2 million in the last quarter of 2013, increasing to 2.2 million the following year.

This population growth means additional investments in housing, roads and schools will be needed, leading to economic growth in the years ahead. The last spell of population growth was during 2004-2009, where population grew at an average annual rate of 15.5%, during the development of Qatar’s hydrocarbon sector. International removals company, Interdean, specialises in providing a comprehensive moving service for a variety of customers around the world, including those moving to Qatar.

Experienced in the needs of expats when arriving in a new country, the specialists were pleased to hear the recent news. A representative shares their thoughts. “It can be difficult to find employment in a new country, so we’re really pleased to see that a popular expat destination such as Qatar is offering so many new vacancies over the coming years. Our advice to those seeking new employment overseas would be to demonstrate their dedication by becoming familiar with the local language as far as possible, as well as carrying out plenty of research beforehand.”

Interdean is pleased to have an office in Qatar, as well as across 122 other countries around the world.


Japan Travel Advice and Warnings: Typhoon Wipha Forecast To Bring Hazardous Sea And Weather Conditions To Parts Of Japan From 15 October

Take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance before you travel. 140,099 British nationals visited Japan in 2011. Most visits are trouble free.

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) advise against all travel to the exclusion zones around the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear facility identified by the Japanese authorities. Reports on 19 August and 1 September 2013, detail a new leak of around 300 tons of radioactive water at the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear facility, which caused Japanese regulators to issue an INES Level 3 rating.

The typhoon season runs from June to December with most activity between July and September. You should monitor the progress of approaching storms. Typhoon Wipha is forecast to bring hazardous sea and weather conditions to parts of Japan from 15 October. There may be some disruption to transport and other infrastructure in the parts of north-eastern Honshu most affected by the 2011 earthquake and tsunami. Check with the local authorities or your travel company before you go.

In recent months, the North Korean government has raised tensions through a series of strong public rhetorical statements. The FCO assess that there is no immediate increased risk or danger to those living in or travelling to Japan. However, you should continue to follow this travel advice, where further information will be posted should the situation change.

You should also follow guidance issued by the local authorities.

There is a continuous risk of earthquakes and tsunamis throughout Japan. Latest warnings and advisories are published on the Japan Meteorological Agency website.

There is a low threat from terrorism.

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Medical, Healthcare, Expatriate And Travel Insurance

A guide to leading international medical, healthcare, expatriate and travel insurance underwriters, companies, providers, operating within leisure, expatriate and corporate travel business markets, globally.