Wednesday, March 24, 2010

A care line to assist foreign tourists in emergencies

South Africa has been blessed, as tourism in South Africa has continued to grow despite the recession. Now, we await the hundreds of thousands of visitors to Cape Town and other centres for the 2010 Soccer World Cup. Safety and security when visiting South Africa has been a topic of hot discussion, and with the eyes of the world critically focused on South Africa, the need for a one stop accident, emergency and general information helpline is now being met by Cape Town based , but accessible Visitors International Protection Association (VIPA) which offers comprehensive assistance services in the event of a visitor being involved in an emergency situation; becoming a victim of crime or just needing general help while on holiday anywhere in South Africa.
The Visitors International Protection Association is an independent organization, but linked to agencies, associations, services and service providers (government and private) concerned with the welfare and well being of international visitors to South Africa. VIP Association membership claims to provide the visitor with the best South Africa has to offer with regards to personal protection, medical care, legal assistance and travel related services. They also help with recovering or replacing lost documents and can relay emergency messages home when required.
The VIP Association has established the VIPA911, 24/7 SPOC (Single Point Of Contact) Contact centre, to co-ordinate all these services, allowing its members to make only with one easy phone call when assistance is needed in all emergency and non emergency situations , such as general information services, and will be assisted by a friendly, efficient assistance co-ordinator who is able to: guide, advise and help … in life threatening and/or intimidating situations.
Any of the following (and many other similar) scenarios are dealt with daily:

You are involved in an accident and are hurt
You need legal assistance
You require a car towing service in the event of a break-down
You require personal protection
You feel ill and require medical assistance
You require assistance with lost travel documents and/or credit cards
You need to get general information about an area, a place or clarification about a situation
Any other imaginable “emergency” situation when abroad

The number for the 24/7 Single Point of Contact Call Centre in South Africa is:080 HELP 911 (080 4357 911). This number is toll free from a landline in South Africa. Cellular Network charges apply when calling from a cellular phone.
In addition they offer a strategic agreement entered into with a global telecommunications provider gives VIPA access to proprietary technology that allows:
installation of panic button functionality on a member’s own cellular phone which transmits positioning information in conjunction with a panic signal,
below contract rate fees on international call and data bundles with no roaming charges whatsoever,
all of which makes the rental of expensive cellular hardware and/or services at the airport redundant
With a variety of packages on offer, VIPA assures prospective members that it caters for both business and leisure travelers.
When planning to enjoy a holiday in South Africa, you might wish to make use of this opportunity to provide peace of mind travel.

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