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Slovakia - Exercise normal security precautions
There is no nationwide advisory in effect for Slovakia. Exercise normal security precautions.
Petty crime (mugging, pickpocketing and purse snatching) occurs, especially in crowded areas and particularly during summer months. Foreigners are often targeted. Be vigilant in shopping centres, Christmas markets, public transportation stations, trains, hotels and major tourist attractions, including Bratislava's Old Town area. Remain vigilant in the presence of street children.
Exercise extra caution on trains, particularly on Prague-Bratislava-Budapest or Budapest-Warsaw routes, and especially when travelling overnight.
Thefts from parked cars have increased.
Avoid public parks in city centres and railway stations after dark.
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.
Aggressive drivers and poorly lit and narrow roads pose hazards, especially in winter. Avoid travelling after dark in remote areas. Horse-drawn and slow-moving agricultural vehicles are common in rural areas.
Public transportation is well developed and reliable.
Officially marked taxis are generally reliable, safe and economical, but it is advisable to pre-negotiate the fare. Beware of taxi drivers who try to overcharge by not switching on the meter.
The Government of Canada does not assess foreign domestic airlines’ compliance with international aviation safety standards. See Foreign domestic airlines for more information.
Individuals posing as plainclothes police officers may ask to see your foreign currency and passport. If approached, decline to hand over personal belongings. Offer instead to go to the nearest police station or seek assistance from a local contact.
See our Overseas Fraud page for more information on scams abroad.
Spiked food and drinks
Never leave food or drinks unattended or in the care of strangers. Be wary of accepting snacks, beverages, gum or cigarettes from new acquaintances, as they may contain drugs that could put you at risk of sexual assault and robbery.
General safety information
Exercise normal safety precautions. Ensure that personal belongings, passports and other travel documents are secure at all times. Do not show signs of affluence.
It is the sole prerogative of every country or territory to determine who is allowed to enter or exit. Canadian consular officials cannot intervene on your behalf if you do not meet entry or exit requirements. The following information has been obtained from the Slovak authorities and is subject to change at any time. The country- or territory-specific entry/exit requirements are provided on this page for information purposes only. While every effort is made to provide accurate information, information contained here is provided on an "as is" basis without warranty of any kind, express or implied. The Government of Canada assumes no responsibility, and shall not be liable for any damages in connection to the information provided. It is your responsibility to check with the Embassy of the Slovak Republic or one of its consulates for up-to-date information.
Slovakia is a Schengen area country. Upon arrival, Canadians are required to present a passport that must be valid for at least three months beyond the date of expected departure from the Schengen area. 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.
You must also be in possession of proof of sufficient funds for the duration of your stay and the cost of a return trip to Canada.
If you intend to stay in private accommodations for a visit lasting more than 30 days, you must register with the nearest "Police Station for Foreigners" within three days of arrival. Hotel guests are automatically registered.
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.
Proof of health insurance may be required.
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
* The 90-day period begins upon initial entry into any country of the Schengen area. Stays are cumulative and include visits to any Schengen area country within any 180-day period.
Canadians who intend to work or obtain a temporary residence permit in Slovakia should contact the Embassy of Canada in Bratislava for information on entry requirements.
The following 26 countries comprise the Schengen area: Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland.
The Schengen area has common rules regarding visas and controls at external borders and has abolished checks within the area’s internal borders. However, some Schengen area countries may require that you register with local authorities shortly after your arrival, particularly when staying in private accommodations.
Canadians do not need a visa for travel to countries within the Schengen area for stays of up to 90 days in any 180-day period. Stays are cumulative and include visits to any country within the Schengen area.
It is important to get your passport stamped when you first enter the Schengen area. The absence of an entry stamp from the initial Schengen port of entry could create difficulties during subsequent encounters with local police or other authorities throughout the Schengen area or at the time of departure from the area.
If you overstay the permitted 90 days in the Schengen area, you may be fined or deported. If you plan to stay in the Schengen area for longer than the 90 days in any 180-day period, you must contact the high commission or embassy of the country or countries you are travelling to and obtain the appropriate visa prior to travel.
The European Commission’s (EC’S) Migration and Home Affairs provides additional information and a calculator of travel days remaining, taking into account previous stays in the Schengen area.
The Schengen Borders Code allows member states to temporarily reintroduce internal border controls in the event that a serious threat to public policy or internal security has been established. Canadians wishing to enter a Schengen area country that has reintroduced internal border controls could be required to present a passport, valid for at least three months from the time of expected departure from that country. For additional information, visit the EC’s Temporary Reintroduction of Border Control.
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.
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.
Tick-borne encephalitis is a viral disease that affects the central nervous system. It is spread to humans by the bite of an infected tick. Vaccination should be considered for those who may be exposed to ticks (e.g., those participating in outdoor activities in wooded areas) while travelling in regions with risk of tick-borne encephalitis.
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 Eastern Europe, food and water can also carry diseases like hepatitis A. Practise safe food and water precautions while travelling in Eastern Europe. When in doubt, remember…boil it, cook it, peel it, or leave it!
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, and bats. Certain infections found in Eastern Europe, like rabies, can be shared between humans and animals.
Medical services and facilities
Medical facilities are adequate and are improving. Doctors and hospitals often expect immediate cash payment.
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.
Canada and Slovakia are signatories to the European Convention on the Transfer of Sentenced Persons. This enables a Canadian imprisoned in Slovakia to request a transfer to a Canadian prison to complete a sentence. The transfer requires the agreement of both Canadian and Slovak authorities.
Dual citizenship is legally recognized in Slovakia. However, Canadian officials may be limited in their ability to provide you with consular services if local authorities consider you a Slovak citizen. You should always travel using your valid Canadian passport and present yourself as Canadian to foreign authorities at all times to minimize this risk. You may also need to carry and present a Slovak passport for legal reasons, for example to enter and exit the country (see Entry/exit requirements to determine passport requirements). 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.
Carry adequate identification at all times, such as a photocopy of your passport.
Photography of military installations and personnel is prohibited. Offenders may be arrested and equipment confiscated.
An International Driving Permit is required.
A vignette (toll sticker) is required to travel on highways. These vignettes can be purchased at border crossings, gas stations or post offices.
The use of cellular telephones while driving is prohibited, unless they are fitted with a hands-free device.
The use of anti-radar devices is also prohibited.
Headlights must be on at all times. The use of seat belts is mandatory.
Vehicles must be equipped for emergency situations: a first aid kit, warning triangle, tow rope, functional spare tire, and high-visibility vests for all passengers.
Children under 12 years of age are not allowed to sit in the front passenger seat. Car seats are mandatory for all children under 150 cm in height.
Fines for traffic violations must be paid on the spot.
There is zero tolerance for driving under the influence of alcohol. Penalties are strict.
Winter tires are mandatory any time the roads are covered in snow or ice.
For more information, consult the European Commission’s Road Safety website.
The currency of Slovakia is the euro (EUR).
Credit cards are accepted in most major hotels, restaurants and shops. Few gas stations accept credit cards. Automated banking machines (ABMs) are available in major cities. Traveller’s cheques may be exchanged at major banks and post offices.
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
Heavy rains are frequent in the spring, sometimes resulting in flooding. Severe flooding in early June 2013 caused considerable damage. Exercise caution, monitor local media and follow the latest instructions from local authorities.
Dial 112 for emergency assistance.
Bratislava - Office of the Embassy of Canada
For emergency consular assistance, call the Embassy of Canada in Bratislava 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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