International visitors should familiarize themselves with the role that embassies and consulates play in the Caribbean.
Consulates and embassies, located on most of the major Caribbean islands, can assist you with lost or stolen passports and emergencies. Local consular offices also provide a list of local doctors, dentists, and medical specialists. While not every island has embassies and consulates for every country, some of the major offices service multiple islands; the American Embassy and Canadian High Commission in Bridgetown, Barbados, for instance, handle affairs for several of the nearby islands, such as Antigua.
If you are involved in an emergency, go to the nearest embassy or consular office for your native country and register as a citizen in the Caribbean region. If you are injured or become seriously ill, a consul will help you find medical assistance and, at your request, inform your family or friends. It is unlikely you'll receive government financial assistance for an emergency trip back home; pre-purchased travel insurance will, however, cover such expenses. Travel insurance is a wise provision for an unforeseen cancellation or incidental medical expenses. Purchase travel insurance direct or through your travel agent rather than a tour operator. Most Caribbean travel is without incident.
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