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Macedonia - Exercise normal security precautions
There is no nationwide advisory in effect for Macedonia. Exercise normal security precautions.
The decision to travel is your responsibility. You are also responsible for your personal safety abroad. The purpose of this Travel Advice is to provide up-to-date information to enable you to make well-informed decisions.
Petty crime (pickpocketing, purse snatching) occurs, especially in Skopje’s main downtown pedestrian zone, the Ramstore Mall, the Trgovski Centar shopping mall and Alexander the Great, Airport. Foreigners have been the target of muggings. Remain vigilant at all times.
Occasional acts of inter-ethnic violence can occur.
You should exercise a high degree of caution when travelling to the western border zone due to heightened criminal activity in the area.
Tensions remain high in the country. Travelling in areas of Macedonia that border Kosovo and Serbia may put you at risk. Demonstrations and political protests occur occasionally in Skopje and other cities. Due to recent political and security developments there is an increased potential for such protests during the summer of 2015. Avoid all demonstrations, protests and large gatherings, as they have the potential to suddenly turn violent. They may occasionally lead to disruptions to traffic and public transportation. Exercise caution and maintain a high level of personal security awareness and vigilance. Monitor local media and follow the advice of local authorities.
Exercise caution when travelling by road, especially after dark. Secondary roads are poorly maintained and lack adequate lighting. In mountainous areas, most roads lack guard rails and are little more than dirt tracks above deep gorges. Ice and snow make driving hazardous in winter. Farm equipment and stray animals pose additional risks.
Travellers may face delays at border crossings. Apart from designated crossing points, border areas are considered military restricted zones where travel is forbidden without official permission.
The Government of Canada does not provide information on the safety of foreign domestic airlines. Research foreign domestic airlines, aircraft and government safety supervision if you have concerns about aviation safety standards abroad.
Credit-card fraud is common. Pay careful attention when your card is being handled by others during payment processing.
See our Overseas Fraud page for more information on scams abroad.
General safety information
Ensure that your personal belongings, passports and other travel documents are secure at all times.
On August 20, 2015, Macedonia’s Interior Ministry declared a state of emergency along its northern and southern borders due to an increase in migrants and refugees entering the country. If you are travelling in the area, be aware of your surroundings and avoid large crowds. Monitor local news and follow the advice of local authorities.
There has been a significant increase in the number of migrants and refugees entering Europe. Some countries have already experienced disruptions to transportation services, including at ferry ports and railway stations, and have seen major delays at border crossings. The situation also heightens the potential for demonstrations that could turn violent without warning, particularly, at railway stations and other transportation hubs. If you are travelling in the region, monitor local news and follow the advice of local authorities, and contact your transport carrier to determine whether the situation could disrupt your travel.
Dial 192 for the police, 193 for firefighters, 194 for an ambulance and 196 for roadside assistance.
It is the sole prerogative of each country or region to determine who is allowed to enter. Canadian consular officials cannot intervene on your behalf if you do not meet entry requirements. The following information on entry and exit requirements has been obtained from the Macedonian authorities. However, these requirements are subject to change at any time. It is your responsibility to check with the Embassy of the Republic of Macedonia or one of its consulates for up-to-date information.
Official (special and diplomatic) passport holders must consult the Official Travel page, as they may be subject to different entry requirements.
Canadians must present a passport to visit Macedonia, which must be valid for at least six months beyond the date of expected departure from that country. Prior to travelling, ask your transportation company about its requirements related to passport validity, which may be more stringent than the country's entry rules.
If you intend to stay in private accommodations, you must register with the police within 24 hours of your arrival.
Canadians of Macedonian ancestry have encountered difficulties when travelling to or through Greece. Any such difficulty should be reported to the Consulate of Canada in Skopje.
Tourist visa: Not required for stays up to 90 days
Business visa: Not required for stays up to 90 days
Student visa: Not required for stays up to 90 days
Children and travel
Children need special documentation to visit certain countries. See Children for more information.
See Health to obtain information on this country’s vaccination requirements.
- Measles: Global Update - July 16, 2015 09:48 EDT
Be sure that your routine vaccines are up-to-date regardless of your travel destination.
Vaccines to Consider
You may be at risk for these vaccine-preventable diseases while travelling in this country. Talk to your travel health provider about which ones are right for you.
Hepatitis A is a disease of the liver spread through contaminated food and water or contact with an infected person. All those travelling to regions with a risk of hepatitis A infection should get vaccinated.
Hepatitis B is a disease of the liver spread through blood or other bodily fluids. Travellers who may be exposed (e.g., through sexual contact, medical treatment, sharing needles, tattooing, acupuncture or occupational exposure) should get vaccinated.
Seasonal influenza occurs worldwide. The flu season usually runs from November to April in the northern hemisphere, between April and October in the southern hemisphere and year round in the tropics. Influenza (flu) is caused by a virus spread from person to person when they cough or sneeze or by touching objects and surfaces that have been contaminated with the virus. Get the flu shot.
Measles is a highly contagious viral disease and is common in most parts of the world. Be sure your measles vaccination is up-to-date regardless of your travel destination.
Yellow Fever Vaccination
Yellow fever is a disease caused by a flavivirus from the bite of an infected mosquito.
Travellers get vaccinated either because it is required to enter a country or because it is recommended for their protection.
|* It is important to note that country entry requirements may not reflect your risk of yellow fever at your destination. It is recommended that you contact the nearest diplomatic or consular office of the destination(s) you will be visiting to verify any additional entry requirements.|
|Country Entry Requirement*|
Food and Water-borne Diseases
Travellers to any destination in the world can develop travellers' diarrhea from consuming contaminated water or food.
In some areas in Southern Europe, food and water can also carry diseases like hepatitis A. Practise safe food and water precautions while travelling in Southern Europe. When in doubt, remember…boil it, cook it, peel it, or leave it!
- Travellers' diarrhea is the most common illness affecting travellers. It is spread from eating or drinking contaminated food or water.
- Risk of developing travellers' diarrhea increases when travelling in regions with poor standards of hygiene and sanitation. Practise safe food and water precautions.
- The most important treatment for travellers' diarrhea is rehydration (drinking lots of fluids). Carry oral rehydration salts when travelling.
Insects and Illness
Travellers are advised to take precautions against bites.
There is no risk of malaria in this country.
Animals and Illness
Travellers are cautioned to avoid contact with animals, including dogs, snakes, rodents, birds, and bats. Some infections found in Southern Europe, like rabies, can be shared between humans and animals.
Medical services and facilities
Most medical facilities are poorly equipped, and specialized treatment may not be available. Immediate cash payment is usually required for medical services.
Keep in Mind...
The decision to travel is the sole responsibility of the traveller. The traveller is also responsible for his or her own personal safety.
Be prepared. Do not expect medical services to be the same as in Canada. Pack a travel health kit, especially if you will be travelling away from major city centres.
Laws & culture
Laws & culture
You are subject to local laws. See Arrest and detention for more information.
Dual citizenship is legally recognized in Macedonia. However, Canadian officials may be limited in their ability to provide you with consular services if local authorities consider you a Macedonian citizen. You should travel using your Canadian passport and present yourself as Canadian to foreign authorities at all times to minimize this risk. Citizenship is determined solely by national laws, and the decision to recognize dual citizenship rests completely with the country in which you are located when seeking consular assistance. See Travelling as a dual citizen for more information.
Do not photograph border crossings and military or security installations.
Homosexuality is not widely accepted in Macedonia.
An International Driving Permit (IDP) is recommended.
Drivers and passengers must wear seatbelts at all times. All vehicles must use side lights/dipped headlights during the day. The use of a cellular telephone while driving is prohibited.
Police routinely stop vehicles for inspection.
To avoid difficulties upon departure, travellers carrying foreign currency, expensive jewellery or electronic equipment should make a customs declaration upon arrival in Macedonia.
The currency of Macedonia is the Macedonian denar (MKD).
The economy is cash-based. The euro (EUR) is the currency of choice, although U.S. dollars are also accepted. Automated banking machines (ABMs) are available in Skopje and are becoming increasingly widespread throughout the country.
Credit cards are widely accepted in hotels and shops, except in some small grocery stores. Traveller’s cheques are sometimes accepted in hotels, but are readily convertible at banks. Foreign currency can be exchanged at all major banks and at numerous exchange facilities.
When crossing one of the external border control points of the European Union (EU), you must make a declaration to customs upon entry or exit if you have at least €10,000 or the equivalent in other currencies. The sum can be in cash, cheques, money orders, traveller’s cheques or any other convertible assets. This does not apply if you are travelling within the EU or in transit to a non-EU country. For more information on the EU legislation and links to EU countries’ sites, visit the web page of the European Commission on cash controls.
Natural disasters & climate
Natural disasters & climate
Macedonia is located in an active seismic zone, although serious earthquakes are rare. Take note of the contact information of the Consulate of Canada in Skopje in the event of an emergency.
Belgrade - Embassy of Canada
Skopje - Consulate of Canada
For emergency assistance, call the Embassy of Canada in Belgrade and follow the instructions. At any time, you may also contact the Emergency Watch and Response Centre located in Ottawa.
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