Wed, Dec 31, 2008 - Page 2 News List

Ministry to open emergency service center for travelers

HELP The global service will serve as the ministry's one-stop window to contact foreign authorities should Taiwanese travelers need emergency assistance

STAFF WRITER, WITH CNA

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) announced on Monday that it would open an emergency service center at the Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport on Thursday as part of its efforts to provide assistance to Taiwanese traveling overseas.

Speaking at a press conference, Lo Yu-chung (羅由中), director-general of the Bureau of Consular Affairs, said the center would serve as the ministry's one-stop window to contact foreign authorities in case Taiwanese traveling overseas needed emergency assistance.

The center's 0800-085-095 hotline is toll-free for calls made within the country, Lo said, adding that the service, launched in time for the upcoming New Year and Lunar New Year holidays, will be available all year round.

Those who call the center from overseas should dial the local code for international calls and then 886-800-085-095 for a fee, Lo said.

The ministry already provides a toll-free global hotline 800-0885-0885 for Taiwanese traveling in 22 countries or regions, including Europe, the US, Japan, South Korea and Australia.

But the new emergency help center will be accessible to Taiwanese travelers all over the world and is a streamlined version of all previous emergency helplines for nationals overseas, the ministry said.

MOFA also advised Taiwanese planning to go abroad to pick up a copy of the Emergency Contact Information for Taiwanese embassies and representative offices abroad from the bureau; the ministry's central, southern and eastern Taiwan offices; or the information desk at the airport.

The emergency numbers listed in the booklet should act as the first point of contact for Taiwanese nationals in need of help, the ministry said.

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