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Austria - Take normal security precautions
Take normal security precautions in Austria.
Safety and security
Petty crime (such as pickpocketing and bag snatching) can occur, particularly in tourist areas. Be particularly careful at night.
Thieves are active in crowded public areas such as:
- pedestrian shopping areas
- restaurants and cafés
- hotel lobbies
- train stations
- public transportation
- tourist attractions
Thieves often target international night trains travelling to and from Austria.
Ensure your personal belongings, including your passport and other travel documents, are secure at all times.
ATM fraud occurs, particularly in Vienna. Be cautious when using debit or credit cards:
- pay careful attention when your cards are being handled by others
- use ATMs located in well-lit public areas or inside a bank or business
- avoid using card readers with an irregular or unusual feature
- cover the keypad with one hand when entering your PIN
- check for any unauthorized transactions on your account statements
More about overseas fraud
There is a threat of terrorism in Europe. Terrorists have carried out attacks in several European cities and further attacks are likely.
Targets could include:
- government buildings, including schools
- places of worship
- airports and other transportation hubs and networks
- public areas such as tourist attractions, restaurants, bars, coffee shops, shopping centres, markets, hotels and other sites frequented by foreigners
Always be aware of your surroundings when in public places. Be particularly vigilant if attending sporting events and during religious holidays and other public celebrations, as terrorists have used such occasions to mount attacks.
Demonstrations may occur. Even peaceful demonstrations can turn violent at any time. They can also lead to disruptions to traffic and public transportation.
- Avoid areas where demonstrations and large gatherings are taking place
- Follow the instructions of local authorities
- Monitor local media for information on ongoing demonstrations
More about mass gatherings (large-scale events)
Road conditions are generally good.
Mountain roads are often narrow and covered with snow and ice during winter. Roads may close due to avalanches. Carry tire chains in the car if you intend to use mountain roads.
We do not make assessments on the compliance of foreign domestic airlines with international safety standards.
General information about foreign domestic airlines
If you intend to do mountaineering or skiing:
- never do so alone and always hire an experienced guide from a reputable company
- buy travel insurance that includes helicopter rescue and medical evacuation
- ensure that your physical condition is good enough to meet the challenges of your activity
- ensure that you are properly equipped and well informed about weather and other conditions that may pose a hazard
- inform a family member or friend of your itinerary, including when you expect to be back to camp
- know the symptoms of acute altitude sickness, which can be fatal
- obtain detailed information on trekking routes or ski slopes before setting out and do not venture off marked trails or slopes, particularly in early or late winter
Every country or territory decides who can enter or exit through its borders. The Government of Canada cannot intervene on your behalf if you do not meet your destination’s entry or exit requirements.
We have obtained the information on this page from the Austrian authorities. It can, however, change at any time.
Verify this information with foreign diplomatic missions and consulates in Canada.
Austria is a Schengen area country. Canadian citizens do not need a visa for travel to countries within the Schengen area. However, visa-free travel only applies to stays of up to 90 days in any 180-day period. Stays are cumulative and include visits to any Schengen area country.
If you plan to stay in the Schengen area for a longer period of time, you will need a visa. You must contact the high commission or embassy of the country or countries you are travelling to and obtain the appropriate visa(s) prior to travel.
Entry requirements vary depending on the type of passport you use for travel.
Before you travel, check with your transportation company about passport requirements. Its rules on passport validity may be more stringent than the country’s entry rules.
Regular Canadian passport
Your passport must be valid for at least 3 months beyond the date you expect to leave from the Schengen area.
Passport for official travel
Different entry rules may apply.
Other travel documents
Different entry rules may apply when travelling with a temporary passport or an emergency travel document. Before you leave, check with the closest diplomatic mission for your destination.
Tourist visa: Not required for stays up to 90 days
Business visa: Not required for stays up 90 days
Work visa: Required
Student visa: Required
Children and travel
Learn about travel with children.
Learn about potential entry requirements related to yellow fever (vaccines section).
- Measles in Europe - December 13, 2018
Be sure that your routine vaccines, as per your province or territory, are up-to-date regardless of your travel destination.
Some of these vaccines include: measles-mumps-rubella (MMR), diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, polio, varicella (chickenpox), influenza and others.
Vaccines to Consider
You may be at risk for these vaccine-preventable diseases while travelling in this country. Talk to your travel health professional about which ones are right for you.
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.
Outbreaks of measles are ongoing.
Measles is a highly contagious viral disease that can cause serious complications for some people.
You are at increased risk of measles infection if you have not had the illness or if you are not up to date on your vaccinations.
- Tick-borne encephalitis is present in some areas of this country.
- It is a viral disease that affects the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord).
- It is spread to humans by the bite of infected ticks or when you consume unpasteurized milk products.
- Vaccination should be considered for those who may be exposed to ticks during outdoor activities.
- A vaccine against TBE does exist but is only available in countries where the disease is present.
- Learn more on what you can do to prevent tick-borne encephalitis (TBE)?
Yellow Fever - Country Entry Requirements
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.
- There is no risk of yellow fever in this country.
Country Entry Requirement*
- Proof of vaccination is not required to enter this country.
- Vaccination is not recommended.
About Yellow Fever
Yellow Fever Vaccination Centres in Canada
* 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.
Food and Water-borne Diseases
Travellers to any destination in the world can develop travellers' diarrhea from consuming contaminated water or food.
Practise safe food and water precautions while travelling in Western Europe. When in doubt, remember…boil it, cook it, peel it, or leave it!
Insects and Illness
In some areas in Western Europe, certain insects carry and spread diseases like Lyme disease, tick-borne encephalitis, and West Nile virus.
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. Certain infections found in some areas in Western Europe, like rabies, can be shared between humans and animals.
Crowded conditions can increase your risk of certain illnesses. Remember to wash your hands often and practice proper cough and sneeze etiquette to avoid colds, the flu and other illnesses.
Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and HIV are spread through blood and bodily fluids; practise safer sex.
Medical services and facilities
Healthcare is excellent. Service is available throughout the country.
Make sure you get travel insurance that includes coverage for medical evacuation and hospital stays.
Travel health and safety
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 and culture
You must abide by local laws.
Learn about what you should do and how we can help if you are arrested or detained abroad.
Canada and Austria are signatories to the Convention on the Transfer of Sentenced Persons. This enables a Canadian imprisoned in Austria to request a transfer to a Canadian prison to complete a sentence. The transfer requires the agreement of both Canadian and Austrian authorities.
You must carry identification, such as your passport, at all times. Keep a photocopy or digital copy of your passport in a secure location in case of loss or seizure.
It is illegal to cover your face in public places in Austria. Failure to comply can lead to heavy fines.
Dual citizenship is legally recognized in Austria, in certain cases.
If you are a Canadian citizen, but also a citizen of Austria, our ability to offer you consular services may be limited while you’re there. You may also be subject to different entry/exit requirements.
- More about dual Austrian citizenship – Austrian government portal
- General information for travellers with dual citizenship
Penalties for possession, use or trafficking of illegal drugs are severe. Convicted offenders can expect a jail sentence and a heavy fine.
You should carry an international driving permit or a German translation of your driver’s licence. If you are in Austria for more than 12 months you must obtain an Austrian licence.
You must be 18 years old to drive in Austria.
Penalties for drinking and driving are severe. The legal blood alcohol limit is 0.05 percent. If convicted, you can expect heavy fines, and local authorities can confiscate your driver’s licence on the spot
The use of a cellular telephone while driving is prohibited, unless it is fitted with a hands-free device.
You cannot turn right on a red light. A blinking green light is equivalent to an amber light in Canada: it doesn’t mean that you have the right-of-way to advance.
Winter tires are mandatory from November 1 to April 15.
All vehicles must have the following in case of a breakdown:
- a first-aid kit
- a warning triangle
- high visibility vests (to be carried in the passenger compartment, not the trunk) for the driver and any passenger who leaves the vehicle
Highway travel requires that you purchase an autobahn vignette (similar to a toll) sticker. You must affix the sticker to the car’s windshield. You can purchase a vignette at all major border crossings, major gas stations and small tabak (tobacco) shops located throughout Austria. Failure to comply can result in heavy fines that you must pay on the spot.
- More about the International Driving Permit
- More information about driving in Austria - European Commission
The currency is the euro (EUR).
Credit cards are widely accepted at main hotels, shops and restaurants. Smaller establishments may only accept cash. ATMs are widely available.
If you are carrying more than €10,000 or the equivalent in other currencies, you must make a declaration to customs upon your entry or exit to the European Union. The sum can be in cash, cheque, money order, traveller’s cheque or any other convertible asset. This does not apply if you are travelling within the European Union or in transit to a non-EU country.
More information about cash controls - European Commission
Natural disasters and climate
There is a risk of avalanches, especially following heavy snowfalls, and some have resulted in deaths.
Be particularly careful in the alpine areas of Salzburg, Styria, Tyrol and Vorarlberg.
Always carefully follow the advice of local authorities.
Heavy rains may occur in the spring and summer, sometimes resulting in flooding and mudslides.
In winter, heavy snowfalls may occur in towns and ski resorts. They may also make roads made impassable.
Dial 112 for general emergency assistance, or:
- 144 for ambulance
- 133 for police
- 122 for firefighters
Vienna - Embassy of Canada
For emergency consular assistance, call the Canadian embassy in Vienna and follow the instructions. At any time, you may also contact the Emergency Watch and Response Centre in Ottawa.
The decision to travel is your choice and you are responsible for your personal safety abroad. The Government of Canada takes the safety and security of Canadians abroad very seriously and provides credible and timely information in its Travel Advice to enable you to make well-informed decisions regarding your travel abroad. In the event of a large-scale emergency, every effort will be made to provide assistance. However, there may be constraints that will limit the ability of the Government of Canada to provide services.
See Large-scale emergencies abroad for more information.
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