As part of its efforts to keep American citizens safe and sound on their travels abroad, the U.S. State Department has just issued new travel advisory updates for 7 countries around the world. The latest updates were published on the Department of State’s website just yesterday, providing travelers with accurate, up to date information that will help them decide whether or not it is safe to travel to one of the seven countries in question this summer.
The latest travel advisory updates are extremely wide in their scope, covering seven countries across five different continents – including one of the most popular travel destinations in the world for American travelers in the shape of the Dominican Republic. Here’s a look at what each of the seven new travel advisories have to say about travel to the countries included in the updates, plus a recap of what travel advisories are and the role they play in travel.
What Are Travel Advisory Updates? Information For Travelers
Travel advisory updates are short but detailed pieces of information that inform travelers about the various risks involved in traveling to a specific destination. The State Department hands out travel advisories for every country in the world, even going as far as to issue specific advisories for different regions in a country when required. They are color coded and come in four distinct levels to make it easier for travelers to quickly determine the suitability of visiting a destination for a vacation – though they can’t prevent a traveler from taking a trip altogether.
The levels are as follows:
- Level 1 – Exercise Normal Precautions (Blue)
- Level 2 – Exercise Increased Caution (Yellow)
- Level 3 – Reconsider Travel (Orange)
- Level 4 – Do Not Travel (Red)
A diverse range of issues are covered by travel advisories, such as crime, terrorism, civil unrest, health, natural disasters, time-limited events, kidnapping and others. As a result of the pandemic, each country’s travel advisory page also contains a note from the CDC regarding its level of Covid-19, which is either unknown, low, moderate or high.
Most Recent Travel Advisory Updates – What Travelers Should Know
Kuwait was the only country from yesterday’s seven travel advisory updates to receive a Level 1 warning, suggesting it is amongst the safest destinations in the world. However, its page does warn travelers not to travel to the desert region near the border with Iraq due to the prevalence of unexploded ordnance and to exercise increased caution in the Jeleeb Al-Shuyoukh area in Kuwait City due to crime. The CDC also indicates a high level of Covid-19 – making the country not entirely risk free.
Two countries – Djibouti and the Dominican Republic – were issued Level 2 travel advisory warnings. Travelers are asked to exercise increased caution in Djibouti due to terrorism and crime, whilst it has an unknown level of Covid-19 according to the CDC. For the Dominican Republic, the issue is crime. Its page goes into more detail, highlighting violent crime is a concern, but adds that resort areas are safer than urban areas due to better resources and policing. The country also has a high level of Covid-19 according to the CDC.
Two more countries were handed Level 3 travel advisory updates. Their details are as follows:
- Colombia – reconsider travel due to crime and terrorism, exercise increased caution due to civil unrest and kidnapping.Travelers should avoid Arauca, Cauca (except Popayán), and Norte de Santander departments altogether. According to the CDC, the country has a moderate level of Covid-19.
- Saudi Arabia – reconsider travel due to the threat of missile and drone attacks on civilian facilities, exercise increased caution due to terrorism.Travelers should avoid the Yemen border area. The country has a moderate level of Covid-19.
Finally, two countries were handed Level 4 countries, making them amongst the most unsafe destinations in the world. They are:
- Iraq – do not travel due to terrorism, kidnapping, armed conflict, civil unrest, and Mission Iraq’s limited capacity to provide support to U.S. citizens. The CDC indicates a moderate level of Covid-19.
- Russia – do not travel to Russia due to the unprovoked and unjustified invasion of Ukraine by Russian military forces, the potential for harassment and singling out of U.S. citizens by Russian government security officials including detention, the arbitrary enforcement of local law, limited flights to and from the country, the Embassy’s limited ability to assist U.S. citizens in Russia, COVID-19-related restrictions, and terrorism. The country has a moderate level of Covid-19.
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Disclaimer: Current travel rules and restrictions can change without notice. The decision to travel is ultimately your responsibility. Contact your consulate and/or local authorities to confirm your nationality’s entry and/or any changes to travel requirements before traveling. Travel Off Path does not endorse traveling against government advisories