How to get help if you are a victim of crime on holiday

FCO Travel Aware

If you become a victim of crime, such as a theft or mugging on holiday, it's important to get help as soon as possible. In most countries, if you want the crime to be investigated, you must report it before you leave the country.

You must also report a loss or theft within 48 hours in order to make a claim on your travel insurance.

The severity of the crime will affect what you need to do:

If you've been the victim of a bag snatch or pick pocket you may not wish to have the crime investigated, but you will need to report it to the police and obtain a written report in order to make a claim on your travel insurance for lost or stolen possessions.

If you have had your passport stolen you must report it as soon as possible. Read our guide: Lost or Stolen Passport? Our Handy Guide

If you are the victim of a more serious crime, such as mugging or assault, the nearest British Embassy, Commission or Consulate Office will be able to help you to:

  • Understand the local police and legal procedures
  • Find an English speaking lawyer or translator
  • Find medical treatment or an English speaking doctor (Your travel insurance 24 hour emergency assistance line will also be able to help you find medical treatment quickly and authorise payment of bills).
  • Contact your relatives and friends on your behalf to let them know what has happened.

Find the nearest embassy to your holiday destination

It is important to remember that the British Embassy or Consulate will not be able to give you any financial assistance eg. Covering the cost of medical treatment, this is what your travel insurance is for.  Depending on the level of cover you have chosen you may also be able to make a claim to recoup the value of stolen items, alternatively contact your home contents provider.