I must admit I know nothing about this other than what is written, but my family travels to Europe often for a month at a time and I thought this was good to know about:
It came to me from the US Embassy in Kiev but applies to all travels...

The State Department recently launched a new, secure online registration website which allows you, as an American citizen, to record foreign trip and residence information that the Department of State can use to communicate with you and assist you in case of an emergency. U.S. citizens around the world who travel or reside abroad can access this site either through a link on <http://travel.state.gov> or directly at <https://travelregistration.state.gov/ibrs>. The new Internet travel registration service for American citizens allows you to register and update your contact information on the Internet at any time, making it easier for you to keep your information current. The site also provides you with up-to-date travel information customized to your unique travel agenda and itinerary. The data you provide is secured behind Department of State firewalls, accessed only by cleared personnel in Embassies, Consulates, and the Department of State, and releasable only under the provisions of the Privacy Act.

Neve and Tristan born Feb 25, 2003
EDD with #2 March 18, 2005
heartbeat and "looking great" so far
Traveling in Jan insearch of the rest of our family-adopting in Ukraine