Global Affairs Travel Tips

Communications Resources and Tips

Communications Tips and Resources for Safe Travels

Reliable and redundant communications capabilities are critical to ensuring a safe and productive trip. Global Affairs is committed to providing general tips, as well as communications-related travel resources, to assist you in trip planning.

Travel Communications Tips

  • Research cellular and data plans, coverage areas, and country/local dialing procedures at your destination

    • Often, purchasing a SIM card or renting a phone in-country is the most cost-effective and reliable approach

  • Establish regular check-in times and procedures with family, friends, colleagues, and employers

  • Have a land line phone connection available, where possible

    • Know local, long-distance, and international dialing procedures, which may differ from mobile phone dialing procedures
  • Save emergency phone numbers

    • Program local emergency services, the nearest U.S. embassy/consulate, local friends/colleagues into your phone before you travel

    • Memorize local emergency numbers
    • Keep hard copies of emergency numbers in a wallet, purse, and in your hotel/residence
  • Keep your mobile phone and computer charged

    • Consider purchasing a spare or external battery

  • Conduct a series of test phone calls, emails, and text messages, once you arrive at your destination

    • Adjust phone contacts and dialing procedures as necessary, especially after moving to a new region

  • Consider renting a satellite phone or radios, for travel in rural areas

    • Ensuring contact with colleagues who can assist in the event of an emergency

  • Engage with friends and colleagues who have traveled to your destination previously or who are originally from there

    • Ask questions about communications capabilities at your destination

  • Remember text/SMS/data may still work normally in an emergency when cellular phone service may overwhelm carrier capacity

Travel Communications Resources

More Information

UC Davis travelers with questions about communications while abroad are encouraged to contact Global Affairs at (530) 752-4129 or