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Cyprus - Take normal security precautions
Take normal security precautions in Cyprus.
Safety and security
Safety and security
Cyprus is an independent country that continues to be divided into two de facto autonomous areas and, contrary to United Nations resolutions, into two separate zones. The Government of the Republic of Cyprus, the internationally recognized authority, exercises control only in the Greek Cypriot southern part of the island. The northern area operates under an autonomous Turkish Cypriot administration. As Canada does not recognize the Turkish Cypriot administration, assistance to Canadians in the northern area of Cyprus could be limited.
The crime rate is low. Petty crime such as pickpocketing and purse snatching is prevalent, particularly in urban areas.
Some bars and “cabarets” have been known to overcharge customers for drinks. Discussions about overcharging may lead to threats of violence and security guards may force you to pay.
There is a threat of terrorism in Europe. Terrorist attacks have occurred in a number of European cities and there is a potential for other violent incidents, which could target areas frequented by expatriates and foreign travellers. Continue to exercise normal security precautions.
Road conditions and road safety can vary greatly throughout the country. There are modern highways linking the major cities, but rural and mountain roads are often narrow, winding and poorly maintained. Running of red lights, speeding and tailgating are common causes of accidents.
Sidewalks are narrow or non-existent and as a result, pedestrians often walk on roadways, causing major safety hazards.
For police or emergency roadside assistance, dial:
155 in the Turkish Cypriot area.
199 in the Republic of Cyprus.
Demonstrations and strikes occur periodically, and have the potential to suddenly turn violent. Strikes may occasionally interfere with services, such as public transport. Avoid all demonstrations and large gatherings, follow the advice of local authorities and monitor local media.
Public buses are limited but metered taxis are widely available.
We do not make assessments on the compliance of foreign domestic airlines with international safety standards.
Learn more about foreign domestic airlines.
General safety information
Exercise normal safety precautions. Ensure that your personal belongings, including your passport and other travel documents, are secure at all times.
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 Cyprus. It can, however, change at any time.
Verify this information with foreign diplomatic missions and consulates in Canada.
You must enter Cyprus at the legal ports of entry in the area under the control of the Government of the Republic of Cyprus. Entry or exit via any other air or seaport is considered illegal and could result in penalties.
Immigration officials at the port of entry may ask you for proof of return or onward ticket, as well as proof of sufficient funds to cover your stay.
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 six months beyond the date you expect to leave from Cyprus.
Official Canadian Passport
Different entry rules may apply.
Learn more about official travel.
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.
Learn more about Canadian passports.
Temporary passport holders may be subject to different entry requirements. Check with diplomatic representatives 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.
Tourist visa: Not required
Business visa: Not required
Student visa: required
If you wish to work in Cyprus, contact the High Commission for the Republic of Cyprus for information on specific requirements. You may also consult the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Cyprus and contact the Ministry of Labour, Welfare and Social Insurance for information on employment permits.
Children and travel
Learn about travel with children.
Learn about potential entry requirements related to yellow fever (vaccines section).
General entry information
A United Nations peacekeeping force patrols the “green line,” the zone between the Republic of Cyprus in the southern part of the island and the Turkish Cypriot in the northern area. You can cross the green line in both directions at designated crossing points, including at pedestrian-only Ledra Palace and Ledra Street checkpoints in central Nicosia.
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Updated: August 18, 2017
This country is reporting a measles outbreak. For more information read the epidemiological update on measles.
Please refer to the vaccines section for recommendations on how to protect yourself.
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 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.
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.
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.
* 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.
In some areas in Western Asia, food and water can also carry diseases like cholera, hepatitis A, schistosomiasis and typhoid. Practise safe food and water precautions while travelling in Western Asia. Remember: Boil it, cook it, peel it, or leave it!
Typhoid is a bacterial infection spread by contaminated food or water. Risk is higher for children, travellers going to rural areas, visiting friends and relatives or travelling for a long period of time. Travellers visiting regions with typhoid risk, especially those exposed to places with poor sanitation should speak to a health care provider about vaccination.
Insects and Illness
In some areas in Western Asia, certain insects carry and spread diseases like chikungunya, Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever, dengue fever, leishmaniasis, malaria, Rift Valley fever, and West Nile virus.
Travellers are advised to take precautions against bites.
- There is a limited risk of malaria in this country.
- Malaria is a serious and occasionally fatal disease that is spread by mosquitoes. There is no vaccine against malaria.
- Protect yourself from mosquito bites. This includes covering up, using insect repellent and staying in well-screened air-conditioned accommodations. You may also consider sleeping under an insecticide-treated bednet or pre-treating travel gear with insecticides.
Animals and Illness
Travellers are cautioned to avoid contact with animals, including dogs, monkeys, snakes, rodents, birds, and bats. Certain infections found in some areas in Western Asia, like avian influenza and rabies, can be shared between humans and animals.
Medical services and facilities
Satisfactory to good medical care is available at government hospitals and private clinics. Medical services in northern Cyprus can be more basic than those available in the Republic of Cyprus. In the event of a serious accident or illness, medical evacuation may be necessary.
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
Laws & 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.
Dual citizenship is legally recognized in Cyprus.
If you are a Canadian citizen, but also a citizen of Cyprus, our ability to offer you consular services may be limited while you're there. You may also be subject to different entry/exit requirements.
Learn more about travelling as a dual citizen.
Canadian citizens with dual citizenship may be subject to compulsory military service and other obligations imposed by both the Government of Cyprus and Turkish Cypriot authorities. To determine your status, contact the High Commission for the Republic of Cyprus prior to departure.
Penalties for possession, use or trafficking of illegal drugs are strict. Convicted offenders can expect jail and heavy fines.
There are restrictions on photographing military installations in both the north and south. English-language signs are generally posted in sensitive areas advising of the restrictions. Regardless of whether signs are posted or not, refrain from photographing military installations or personnel and comply with all requests from local authorities regarding the use of photographic equipment.
An International Driving Permit is recommended.
Traffic drives on the left.
Liability insurance is mandatory. Vehicle insurance purchased in the Republic of Cyprus is not valid in the Turkish Cypriot area. A specific insurance is required by the Turkish Cypriot administration, including when driving rental cars.
Enforcement of traffic laws and regulations is inconsistent.
The use of a cellular telephone while driving is prohibited, unless it is fitted with a hands-free device.
Helmets are required when riding on a motorcycle.
The use of seat belts and child car seats is required.
Seek independent legal advice if you consider the purchase, rental, advertisement or promotion of property in areas that are not under the effective control of the Government of Cyprus. There is a high probability that you will become the target of civil lawsuits and your ownership and involvement with that property may be challenged by Cypriots displaced in 1974.
The currency of the Republic of Cyprus is the euro (EUR).
Credit cards are widely accepted. Traveller’s cheques can be exchanged at most banks. Automated banking machines are available.
The euro can be used in transactions in the Turkish-occupied areas, although is not officially circulated. The new Turkish lira (YTL) is also in circulation in those areas.
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 European Commission’s cash controls.
Natural disasters and climate
Natural disasters & climate
Cyprus is located in an active seismic zone and minor earthquakes are relatively common.
Beware of strong seas and undertows, and take note of warning signs on beaches.
Dial 112 for emergency assistance.
Nicosia - Consulate of Canada
Athens - Embassy of Canada
For emergency consular assistance, call the Consulate of Canada in Nicosia or the Embassy of Canada in Athens, Greece, 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. We take the safety and security of Canadians abroad very seriously and provide credible and timely information in our Travel Advice to enable you to make well-informed decisions regarding your travel abroad.
The content on this page is provided for information only. While we make every effort to give you correct information, it is provided on an "as is" basis without warranty of any kind, express or implied. The Government of Canada does not assume responsibility and will not be liable for any damages in connection to the information provided.
If you need consular assistance while abroad, we will make every effort to help you. However, there may be constraints that will limit the ability of the Government of Canada to provide services.
Learn more about consular services.
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