What do I need to bring with me in case of an evacuation?

The thing about living in such a calm place as Korea is that we can easily start to imagine that nothing terrible could happen here.  Though relatively calm and stable, anyone living here should be prepared for worst case scenarios including natural or man-made disasters.  It’s a good idea to stay organized at home so that you can easily grab the items below if you need to run.  And, in the event of a disaster, we think it’s smart to keep these items either on your person or with you in a carry-on bag…not in checked luggage if you’re getting on an airplane.  You may need to customize the list to include other things of particular importance to you, or to remove items that do not pertain to your situation.

– Medications (prescription and over the counter)
– Extra glasses and prescriptions
– Passports
– Copy of passport bio page and any visas, kept separate from the actual  passport (i.e. in a different bag)
– Current power of attorney
– School records, report cards, test scores, and current samples of work
– Medical/dental records, immunization cards
– Birth certificates, naturalization certificates, marriage certificates
– Driver’s license, auto insurance policies, auto registration, and title, if applicable
– Copy of all documents above, hard copy and/or on thumb drive, kept separate from the originals (i.e. in a different bag)
– Personal checks, check registers, latest bank statement
– Credit cards
– Bills/financial records
– Safe deposit box keys
– Address book
– Lists with names and addresses of doctors, dentists, lawyers, etc.
– Travelers checks; U.S. currency, if possible
– Inventory of household effects
– Household goods insurance policy
– Personal items and a change of clothing for each traveler
– Snacks

You may never need to actually leave Korea in a hurry, but it’s better to be prepared in case you do.  More information about Emergency Preparedness is available on our website at  https://kr.usembassy.gov/u-s-citizen-services/security-and-travel-information/ and https://kr.usembassy.gov/u-s-citizen-services/disaster-preparedness/


2 responses to “What do I need to bring with me in case of an evacuation?

  1. Should you depart Korea immediately when advisery by Embassy is sent out and is evacuation manaditory.

    • Every emergency situation is different. Any action on your part that we recommend or require will depend on the specific situation we are facing at that time. When the U.S. Embassy has knowledge of a crisis that will require Americans to take any action, we will put out clear instructions through all possible media, including the embassy’s website, social media, U.S. military TV and radio channels, SMS, email, etc. We encourage you to sign up for embassy email alerts and register for the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) through http://www.asktheconsul.org to ensure that you are receiving accurate, up-to-date information for Americans living in Korea. Please also visit http://travel.state.gov/travel/travel_1744.html for current information on travel to other countries of the world, and a good explanation of the difference between a “Travel Warning” and a “Travel Alert.”

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