Share this post/page...FacebookTwitterRedditLinkedInEmail   

The latest travel warnings and alerts from the government

Do not travel to Central African Republic (CAR) due to crime, civil unrest, and kidnapping.

Country Summary: Violent crime such as armed robbery, assault, sexual assault, carjacking, and homicide is common throughout the country. Large areas of the country are controlled by armed groups fighting for control of territory. They regularly commit serious crimes, such as assault, kidnapping, and murder.

Large gatherings and extrajudicial mobs can form quickly and become violent. Authorities may close airports, land borders, and roads with little or no notice.

The U.S. government has an extremely limited ability to provide emergency services to U.S. citizens in the Central African Republic due to the lack of permanent consular presence. U.S. government employees are subject to a curfew and limited movement. They must obtain special authorization to travel outside of Bangui.

Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.

Read the Safety and Security section on the country information page.

If you decide to travel to Central African Republic (CAR):

  • Have evacuation plans that do not rely on U.S. government assistance.
  • Make contingency plans to leave the country.
  • Draft a will and designate appropriate insurance beneficiaries and/or power of attorney.
  • Discuss a plan with loved ones regarding care/custody of children, pets, property, belongings, non-liquid assets (collections, artwork, etc.), funeral wishes, etc.
  • Share important documents, login information, and points of contact with loved ones so that they can manage your affairs, if you are unable to return as planned to the United States. Find a suggested list of such documents here.
  • Establish your own personal security plan in coordination with your employer or host organization, or consider consulting with a professional security organization. Your plan should include sheltering in place, maintaining outside communication, and a personal evacuation plan via commercial means.
  • Develop a communication plan with family and/or your employer or host organization.
  • Be sure to appoint one family member to serve as the point of contact with hostage-takers, media, U.S. and host country government agencies, and Members of Congress, if you are taken hostage or detained.
  • Establish a proof of life protocol with your loved ones, so that if you are taken hostage, your loved ones can know specific questions (and answers) to ask the hostage-takers to be sure that you are alive (and to rule out a hoax)
  • Leave DNA samples with your medical provider in case it is necessary for your family to access them.
  • Erase any sensitive photos, comments, or other materials from your social media pages, cameras, laptops, and other electronic devices that could be considered controversial or provocative by local groups.
  • Leave your expensive/sentimental belongings behind.
  • Avoid demonstrations and crowds.
  • Enroll your trip in the State Department's Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP).
  • Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.
  • Follow the Department of State on Facebook and Twitter.
  • Review the Crime and Safety Report for Central African Republic (CAR).
  • Prepare a contingency plan for emergency situations. Review the Traveler’s Checklist.

Last Update: Reissued after periodic review with updates to information on crime, civil unrest and the “If you decide to travel” section.

Posted: December 12, 2019, 12:00 am

Exercise normal precautions in The Gambia. Some areas have increased risk. Read the entire Travel Advisory.      

Exercise Increased Caution In:

  • The Gambia’s southern border area adjacent to Senegal’s Casamance region due to the potential presence of landmines.

Read the Safety and Security section on the country information page.

If you decide to travel to The Gambia:

The Gambia’s Southern Border with Senegal – Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution

Some landmines from the Casamance conflict remain in the border region.

Last Update: Reissued after periodic review with minor edits.

 

 

Posted: December 12, 2019, 12:00 am

Exercise normal precautions in Rwanda. Some areas have increased risk. Read the entire Travel Advisory.

Exercise Increased Caution in:

  • The Rwanda-Burundi border due to armed conflict.
  • The Rwanda-Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) border due to armed conflict.

Read the Safety and Security section on the country information page.

If you decide to travel to Rwanda:

Rwanda-Burundi Border—Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution

The Nyungwe Forest National Park abuts the border with Burundi. Borders may not be clearly marked. It is required to obtain permits from the Rwanda Development Board prior to entry. Relations between Burundi and Rwanda are tense and there have been cross-border incursions and armed clashes.

Rwanda-Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) Border—Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution

Armed rebel and militia groups operate in DRC’s North and South Kivu provinces and Virunga Park. Borders may not be clearly marked and there have been cross-border incursions and armed clashes. It is required to obtain permits from the Rwanda Development Board prior to entry to Volcanoes National Park in Rwanda, which is adjacent to Virunga Park.

Last Update:  Reissued after periodic review with updates to the Risk Indicators.

Posted: December 11, 2019, 12:00 am

Exercise normal precautions in Equatorial Guinea.

Read the Safety and Security section on the Country Information page.

If you decide to travel to Equatorial Guinea:

Last Update: Reissued after periodic review with minor grammatical edits.

 

Posted: December 11, 2019, 12:00 am

Exercise normal precautions in Cabo Verde.  Some areas have increased risk.  Read the entire Travel Advisory.

Exercise Increased Caution In:

  • Praia due to crime.

Read the Safety and Security section on the country information page.

If you decide to travel to Cabo Verde:

  • Do not physically resist any robbery attempt.
  • Use caution when walking or driving at night.
  • Be aware of your surroundings.
  • Do not display signs of wealth, such as expensive watches or jewelry.
  • Do not answer your door at your hotel/residence unless you know who it is.
  • Be extra vigilant when visiting banks or ATMs.
  • Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive Alerts and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
  • Follow the Department of State on Facebook and Twitter.
  • Review the Crime and Safety Report for Cabo Verde.
  • Prepare a contingency plan for emergency situations. Review the Traveler’s Checklist.

Praia – Level 2:  Exercise Increased Caution

Violent crime, such as burglary, armed robbery, and assault, occurs in Praia.

Last Update:  Reissued after periodic review with updates to the Risk Indicators, the Travel Advisory areas of Level 2, and the “If you decide to travel” section.

Posted: December 4, 2019, 12:00 am

Exercise increased caution in Tanzania due to crime, terrorism, and targeting of LGBTI persons.

Country Summary: Violent crime, such as assault, sexual assault, robberies, mugging, and carjacking, is common. Local police may lack the resources to respond effectively to serious crime.

Terrorist groups continue plotting possible attacks in Tanzania. Terrorists may attack with little or no warning, targeting embassies, police stations, mosques, and other places frequented by Westerners.

Members of the LGBTI community have been arrested, targeted, harassed, and/or charged with unrelated offenses. Individuals detained under suspicion of same-sex sexual conduct could be subject to forced anal examinations.

Read the Safety and Security section on the country information page.

If you decide to travel to Tanzania:

  • Always carry a copy of your U.S. passport and visa and keep original documents in a secure location.
  • Be aware of your surroundings.
  • Do not leave your food or drink unattended.
  • Stay alert in all locations, especially those frequented by Westerners.
  • Avoid public displays of affection particularly between same-sex couples.
  • Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive Alerts and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
  • Follow the Department of State and the US Embassy in Tanzania on Facebook and Twitter
  • Review the Crime and Safety Report for Tanzania.
  • Prepare a contingency plan for emergency situations. Review the Traveler’s Checklist.

Last Update: Reissued with updates to a Risk Indicator.

Posted: December 3, 2019, 12:00 am

Do not travel to Venezuela due to crime, civil unrest, poor health infrastructure, kidnapping, and arbitrary arrest and detention of U.S. citizens.

Country Summary: On January 24, 2019, the Department ordered the departure of non-emergency U.S. government employees and family members due to ongoing political instability. The U.S. government has limited ability to provide emergency services to U.S. citizens in Venezuela.  

Violent crime, such as homicide, armed robbery, kidnapping, and carjacking, is common. Political rallies and demonstrations occur, often with little notice. Demonstrations typically elicit a strong police and security force response that includes the use of tear gas, pepper spray, water cannons, and rubber bullets against participants and occasionally devolve into looting and vandalism.

There are shortages of food, electricity, water, medicine, and medical supplies throughout much of Venezuela. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a Level 3 ‘Avoid Nonessential Travel’ notice on May 15, 2018 due to inadequate healthcare and the breakdown of the medical infrastructure in Venezuela.

Consular access to detained U.S. citizens who also have Venezuelan nationality is severely restricted by the Venezuelan government and the U.S. Embassy may not receive access in these cases. Security forces have arbitrarily detained U.S. citizens for long periods. Venezuelan authorities may not notify the U.S. Embassy of the detention of a U.S. citizen, and consular access to detainees may be denied or severely delayed.

Read the Safety and Security section on the country information page.

If you decide to travel to Venezuela:

  • Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.
  • Do not travel between cities after dark.
  • Avoid travel between Simón Bolívar International Airport and Caracas at night.
  • Do not take unregulated taxis from Simón Bolívar International Airport, and avoid ATMs in this area.
  • Avoid demonstrations.
  • Bring a sufficient supply of over-the-counter and prescription medicines.
  • Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive Alerts and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
  • Follow the Department of State on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.
  • Review the Crime and Safety Report for Venezuela.
  • U.S. citizens who travel abroad should always have a contingency plan for emergency situations. Review the Traveler’s Checklist.

Last Update: Reissued after periodic review without changes.

Posted: December 2, 2019, 12:00 am

Do not travel to South Sudan due to crime, kidnapping, and armed conflict.

Country Summary: Violent crime, such as carjackings, shootings, ambushes, assaults, robberies, and kidnappings is common throughout South Sudan, including Juba. Foreign nationals have been the victims of rape, sexual assault, armed robberies, and other violent crimes.

Armed conflict is ongoing and includes fighting between various political and ethnic groups. Weapons are readily available to the population. In addition, cattle raids occur throughout the country and often lead to violence.

Reporting in South Sudan without the proper documentation from the South Sudanese Media Authority is considered illegal, and any journalistic work there is very dangerous. Journalists regularly report being harassed in South Sudan, and many have been killed while covering the conflict.

The U.S. government has limited ability to provide emergency consular services to U.S. citizens in South Sudan. U.S. government personnel in South Sudan are under a strict curfew. They must use armored vehicles for nearly all movements, and official travel outside Juba is limited. Due to the critical crime threat in Juba, walking is also restricted; when allowed, it is limited to a small area in the immediate vicinity of the Embassy and during daylight hours only. Family members cannot accompany U.S. government employees who work in South Sudan.

Due to risks to civil aviation operating within or in the vicinity of South Sudan, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has issued a Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) and/or a Special Federal Aviation Regulation (SFAR). For more information U.S. citizens should consult Federal Aviation Administration’s Prohibitions, Restrictions and Notices.

Read the Safety and Security section on the country information page.

If you decide to travel to South Sudan:

  • Exercise extreme care in all parts of the country, including Juba. Travel outside of Juba with a minimum of two vehicles along with appropriate recovery and medical equipment in case of mechanical failure or other emergency.
  • Avoid travel along border areas.
  • Avoid demonstrations and public gatherings. Even events intended to be peaceful can become violent.
  • Be aware that photography in public is strictly controlled and you are required to obtain authorization from the Ministry of Information before taking any photographs or video in public – including while inside a vehicle.
  • Monitor local/international news and consular messages.
  • Enroll your trip in the State Department's Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP).
  • Review your personal security plan and visit our page on travel to high risk areas.
  • Draft a will and designate appropriate insurance beneficiaries and/or power of attorney.
  • Discuss a plan with loved ones regarding care/custody of children, pets, property, belongings, non-liquid assets (collections, artwork, etc.), funeral wishes, etc.
  • Share important documents, log-in information, and points of contact with loved ones so that they can manage your affairs, if you are unable to return as planned to the United States. Find a suggested list of such documents here.
  • Establish your own personal security plan in coordination with your employer or host organization, or consider consulting with a professional security organization. Your plan should include sheltering in place, maintaining outside communication, and a personal evacuation plan via commercial means.
  • Develop a communication plan with family and/or your employer or host organization so that they can monitor your safety and location as you travel through high-risk areas. This plan should specify who you would contact first, and how they should share the information.
  • Be sure to appoint one family member to serve as the point of contact with hostage-takers, media, U.S. and host country government agencies, and Members of Congress, if you are taken hostage or detained.
  • Establish a proof of life protocol with your loved ones, so that if you are taken hostage, your loved ones can know specific questions (and answers) to ask the hostage-takers to be sure that you are alive (and to rule out a hoax).
  • Leave DNA samples with your medical provider in case it is necessary for your family to access them.
  • Erase any sensitive photos, comments, or other materials from your social media pages, cameras, laptops, and other electronic devices that could be considered controversial or provocative by local groups.
  • Leave your expensive/sentimental belongings behind.
  • Follow the Department of State on Facebook and Twitter.
  • Review the Crime and Safety Report for South Sudan.
  • U.S. citizens who travel abroad should always have a contingency plan for emergency situations. Review the Traveler’s Checklist.

Last Update: Reissued after periodic review with minor edits.

Posted: November 26, 2019, 12:00 am

Do not travel to Yemen due to terrorism, civil unrest, health risks, kidnapping, armed conflict, and landmines.  

The U.S. Embassy in Sana’a suspended its operations in February 2015, and the U.S. government is unable to provide emergency services to U.S. citizens in Yemen.

Terrorist groups continue to plot and conduct attacks in Yemen. Terrorists may attack with little or no warning, targeting public sites, transportation hubs, markets/shopping malls, and local government facilities. Additionally, there is a continuing threat of kidnapping/detention by terrorists, criminal elements, and/or non-government actors. Employees of western organizations may be targeted for attack or kidnapping.

Military conflict has caused significant destruction of infrastructure, housing, medical facilities, schools, and power and water utilities. This limits the availability of electricity, clean water, and medical care. This instability often hampers the ability of humanitarian organizations to deliver critically needed food, medicine, and water. Critical levels of violence, to include armed conflict, artillery shelling, and air strikes, persist throughout the country. There are also reports of landmines throughout Yemen.

Cholera is present throughout Yemen. There is a limited availability of medicine and medical supplies, and adequate medical treatment is unavailable.

There is a very high risk of kidnapping, and detention of U.S. citizens in Yemen, particularly dual national Yemeni-Americans. Rebel groups in Sana’a have detained U.S. citizens, including dual Yemeni-American citizens. U.S. citizens, including dual nationals, have faced difficulty – including lengthy delays – when attempting to depart Yemen.

Due to risks to civil aviation operating within or in the vicinity of Yemen, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has issued a Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) and/or a Special Federal Aviation Regulation (SFAR). For more information U.S. citizens should consult the Federal Aviation Administration’s Prohibitions, Restrictions and Notices.

Read the Safety and Security section on the country information page

If you decide to travel to Yemen:

  • Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.
  • Consult the Centers for Disease Control’s webpage on Health Information for Travelers to Yemen.
  • Draft a will and designate appropriate insurance beneficiaries and/or power of attorney.
  • Discuss a plan with loved ones regarding care/custody of children, pets, property, belongings, non-liquid assets (collections, artwork, etc.), funeral wishes, etc.
  • Share important documents, login information, and points of contact with loved ones so that they can manage your affairs, if you are unable to return as planned to the United States. 
  • Establish your own personal security plan in coordination with your employer or host organization, or consider consulting with a professional security organization.
  • Develop a communication plan with family and/or your employer or host organization so that they can monitor your safety and location as you travel through high-risk areas. This plan should specify who you would contact first, and how they should share the information.
  • Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive Alerts and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
  • Follow us on TwitterFacebook, and Instagram
  • Review the Crime and Safety Report for Yemen.
  • Prepare a contingency plan for emergency situations. Review the Traveler’s Checklist.

Last Update: Reissued with updates to the security situation for U.S. citizens.

Posted: November 26, 2019, 12:00 am

Exercise increased caution in the Bahamas due to crime. Some areas have increased risk.

Country Summary: Violent crime, such as burglaries, armed robberies, and sexual assault, occurs even during the day and in tourist areas. Although the family islands are not crime-free, the vast majority of crime occurs on New Providence and Grand Bahama islands. U.S. government personnel are not permitted to visit the area known by many visitors as the Sand Trap area in Nassau due to crime. Activities involving commercial recreational watercraft, including water tours, are not consistently regulated. Watercrafts are often not maintained, and many companies do not have safety certifications to operate in The Bahamas. Jet-ski operators have been known to commit sexual assaults against tourists. As a result, U.S. government personnel are not permitted to use jet-ski rentals on New Providence and Paradise Islands.

Exercise caution in the area known as "Over the Hill" (south of Shirley Street) and the Fish Fry at Arawak Cay in Nassau, especially at night.

Read the Safety and Security section on the country information page.

If you decide to travel to The Bahamas:

Last Update: Reissued with update to Travel Advisory Level for Freeport, Grand Bahamas.

Posted: November 26, 2019, 12:00 am

Check out additional information on our travel page.