Know Before You Go: News From Around the World

Here are the Top 5 things around the globe that caught our eyes this week! Here’s what you need to know!

  1. Earthquake in Nepal
    1. What You Need to Know: The country of Nepal has been struck by two earthquakes over the past several weeks. The first was a 7.8 quake that occurred on April 25, killing 8,000. On Tuesday, a 7.3 quake occurred; the death toll on Wednesday stands at 65.  Deaths have occurred in India and Tibet as well. Landslides have also wiped out many houses in the area.
    2. Why You Need to Know This: As much as we try to prepare you and keep you safe on your travels abroad, we cannot stop mother nature. We have no control over what happens over the earth. Things like this can happen on every continent, in every country. The only thing you can do is be prepared.
    3. Office Top Tip: Stay as safe as you can. Don’t go to places where a natural disaster has just occurred. Use your best judgement. If you are caught in something, the best thing to do is remain calm and get in touch with local authorities and your International Coordinator.
  2. Amtrak Train Derails in Philadelphia
    1. What You Need to Know: On Tuesday night, an American Amtrak train derailed in Philly en route to Washington D.C. at around 9:30 p.m. 6 of the 243 people on board have died and another 150 are injured. All 8 cars of the train derailed, including the engine. There is no clear indication as to what happened to cause this derailment. The National Transportation Safety Board arrived Wednesday Morning to begin an investigation.
    2. Why You Need to Know This: If you’re traveling to a foreign country, train travel could be one of the main forms of transportation used. In Europe especially, trains are heavily used to transport people from city to city. It is important to remember that train accidents are rare in occurrence. There were only 51 accidents last year, many of which had no injuries reported.
    3. Office Top Tip: Don’t let fear stand in the way of fun. Train derailment is rare; don’t be afraid of getting on trains.
  3. Burundi Military Coup Attempt
    1. What You Need to Know: In news reports breaking this morning, a Burundi General says that the President has been overthrown by the military. The African nation’s President, Pierre Nkurunziza, is attempting to run for a third term; Many of the countries citizens object to Nkurunziza’s candidacy, but protests have been met with deadly force by local police.
    2. Why You Need to Know This: Since the Arab Spring revolutions began in December 2010, Africa and the Middle East have been volatile places. With several countries still undergoing (or attempting to undergo) revolutions, it can be a dangerous place. If Burundi’s military coup is successful, the whole country could change in an instant. It is unclear at the time of publication whether or not the military was successful or of any repercussions that will unfold.
    3. Office Top Tip: Stay away from revolutions. Do not take part in any protests. Even if you agree with the protestors and agree that reforms must happen in these countries, do not take part in anything that could get your hurt. Your safety is our number one concern. We want you to enjoy your time abroad, but return home to your families.
  4. Elections in Britain
    1. What You Need to Know: The most important thing to note, is that UK Politics are not like US Politics at all. While we have two main parties (Democrats and Republicans), the UK has a whole host of parties. The parties that came out victorious during the 2015 elections were the Conservative Party, the Labour Party, the Scottish National Party, the Liberal Democrats, and the Democratic Unionist Party. David Cameron was elected to serve another term as Prime Minister with his Conservative party getting 51% of the votes. He will hold this position for the next 5 years.
    2. Why You Need to Know This: If you’re thinking about heading off to the UK, this is something that everyone will be talking about. People will probably be asking you what you think about the elections and how elections work in the US. It also could have an impact on what’s happening in the news while you’re in the UK. And don’t forget about Scotland! 45% of Scottish voters wanted to declare their independence from England when they voted last year. Keep this in mind as you begin to plan.
    3. Office Top Tip: Be knowledgeable. Know about American politics and UK politics. You will be able to strike up a conversation with anyone you meet. It will also keep you better informed about the world you’ll be living in for 5 months!
  5. Top Airline in the US is….
    1. What You Need to Know: J.D Power and Associates conducted a North American Airline Satisfaction Study and the results are in! Alaska Airlines came out as the top airline in the US, with Delta Air Lines and American Airlines coming in second and third. Check out the full list here: http://www.jdpower.com/press-releases/2015-north-america-airline-satisfaction-study
    2. Why You Need to Know This: You’ll need to get your airline ticket to get abroad. It is a wise idea to research different options before you decide to book your flight.
    3. Office Top Tip: Do your research! Book a flight early and know what you’re paying for!

Check back next week for more news so you can Know Before You Go!

All stories are based off of information gathered from CNN, the New York Times, The Guardian, The BBC, and the Telegraph.

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