Crossing an African Desert During Playoff Season? Wishing You Could Have Real Canadian Maple Syrup with Your Fruit and Granola in the Andes?

Minister of State Ablonczy Advises Canadians on the Three Rs of Foreign Travel

June 18, 2012 - The Honourable Diane Ablonczy, Minister of State of Foreign Affairs (Consular and the Americas), today issued the following statement ahead of the busy summer travel season:

“While travelling or living abroad, Canadians sometimes experience challenges. If they do, our consular offices all over the world are available to offer emergency consular services.

“Canada receives more than 215,000 consular requests a year. However, some Canadians appear to have the mistaken idea that consular officers can act as their personal concierge. That may account for requests that are definitely beyond the range of what is included in consular services. Some real life examples:

  • Consular officers cannot provide you with refills for your medication, but they can recommend good local medical services.
  • Officers cannot drive you around to find the person who mugged you, but they can help you contact the local police.
  • While Canadian officials everywhere love their hockey and maple syrup, they cannot provide a place to watch the playoffs or provide emergency rations of your favourite breakfast condiment.

“To help prepare Canadians before they travel, we encourage them to observe the three Rs of international travel: Read up, Register and Reach us.

“With good planning, Canadians travelling, working or studying abroad should be able to avoid most challenges, leaving consular officers available to help in cases of true emergency.”

For more information on consular services, please consult www.travel.gc.ca.

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For further information, media representatives may contact:

John Babcock
Senior Communications Adviser
Office of the Minister of State of Foreign Affairs (Americas and Consular Affairs)
613-944-1291

Foreign Affairs Media Relations Office
Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada
613-995-1874
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