Uruguay Register Travel insurance Destinations

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URUGUAY - Take normal security precautions

Take normal security precautions in Uruguay.

Safety and security

Safety and security

Crime

Street crime such as pickpocketing, armed robbery and muggings occur in the capital city, Montevideo, particularly:

  • 18 de Julio avenue
  • La Ciudad Vieja (the Old City)
  • Plaza Independencia)
  • Puerto de Montevideo (the port area)

Criminals may be on foot or on motorcycle.

Thieves will snatch and grab from and break into vehicles while driving. Be sure to keep bags and valuables out of sight in your vehicle.

  • Avoid Montevideo’s Villa del Cerro neighbourhood
  • Be cautious when walking downtown, including in well-travelled areas
  • Avoid showing signs of affluence
  • Carry only small amounts of cash
  • Carry a photocopy of your passport with you at all times and ensure that the original is stored in a safe location

During the summer (Canadian winter) months, the tourist police patrols the following Montevideo neighbourhoods, where most hotels are located:

  • El Centro
  • La Ciudad Vieja
  • El Cordón and El Parque Rodo
  • Pocitos, Punta Carretas

There is an increased presence of uniformed police officers on foot in areas where criminal activity is concentrated. Authorities have also increased the number of patrol cars in residential areas. The clearly marked patrol cars are equipped with cellular phones, and the phone numbers are painted on the vehicles.

Petty crime also occurs in towns bordering Brazil.

Demonstrations

Demonstrations occur regularly in Montevideo.

Before travelling by road from Uruguay to Argentina, monitor local news reports to confirm that there are no scheduled blockades or demonstrations on the bridges connecting the two countries. Demonstrations occasionally disrupt local transportation services.

Even peaceful demonstrations can turn violent at any time.

  • 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 safety

Exercise caution and common sense when travelling by motor vehicle.

The accident rate is high due to several causes:

  • roads are often winding
  • the terrain is hilly
  • most intersections do not have stop signs or traffic lights
  • many cars are poorly maintained
  • traffic regulations are routinely ignored

Buy gas near cities because the next station may be far away.

The main toll road to Punta del Este is in good condition and well-marked.

Public transportation

Exercise caution when choosing taxis in Montevideo. When possible, select one with three-point seat belts in the back seats or insist on sitting in front next to the driver. Taxis are equipped with a thick glass partition installed to protect drivers against crime. About three injuries a day occur as people are thrown against the partition when the driver brakes suddenly or is involved in an accident. Injuries can be severe even in minor collisions.

Air travel

We do not make assessments on the compliance of foreign domestic airlines with international safety standards.

General information about foreign domestic airlines

Entry/exit requirements

Entry/exit requirements

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 Uruguayan authorities. It can, however, change at any time.

Verify this information with foreign diplomatic missions and consulates in Canada.

Passport

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 the expected duration of your stay in Uruguay.

Passport for official travel

Different entry rules may apply.

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.

Useful links

Visas

Tourist visa: Not required
Business visa: Not required
Student visa: Required

Canadians can stay in Uruguay without a tourist or business visa for 90 days. Once in the country, it is possible to ask immigration authorities for an extension.

You can get a student visa in Uruguay, but students must get proof of acceptance from the educational institution before arrival in the country.

Airport tax

When leaving Uruguay, you must pay an airport tax of approximately US$25. This tax is either included in the price of the plane ticket or charged in cash.

Children and travel

Learn about travel with children.

Yellow fever

Learn about potential entry requirements related to yellow fever (vaccines section).

Health

Health

Related Travel Health Notices
  • There are no updates at this time.
Consult a health care professional or visit a travel health clinic preferably six weeks before you travel.
Vaccines

Routine Vaccines

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 A

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

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.

Influenza

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

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 - 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.

Risk

  • There is no risk of yellow fever in this country.

Country Entry Requirement*

  • Proof of vaccination is not required to enter this country.

Recommendation

  • 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.

About Yellow Fever

Yellow Fever Vaccination Centres in Canada

Food/Water

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 South America, food and water can also carry diseases like cholera, hepatitis A, schistosomiasis and typhoid. Practise safe food and water precautions while travelling in South America. Remember: Boil it, cook it, peel it, or leave it!

Typhoid

Typhoid is a bacterial infection spread by contaminated food or water. Risk is higher among children, travellers going to rural areas, travellers visiting friends and relatives or those travelling for a long period of time.

Travellers visiting regions with a risk typhoid, especially those exposed to places with poor sanitation should speak to a health care professional about vaccination.


Insects

Insects and Illness

In some areas in South America, certain insects carry and spread diseases like American trypanosomiasis (Chagas disease), chikungunyadengue fever, leishmaniasis, malaria, onchocerciasis (river blindness)West Nile virus , yellow fever and Zika virus.

Travellers are advised to take precautions against bites.

Chikungunya

There is currently a risk of chikungunya in this country. Chikungunya is a virus spread through the bite of an infected mosquito. Chikungunya can cause a viral disease that typically causes fever and pain in the joints. In some cases, the joint pain can be severe and last for months or years.

Protect yourself from mosquito bites at all times. There is no vaccine available for chikungunya.

Dengue fever
  • Dengue fever occurs in this country. Dengue fever is a viral disease that can cause severe flu-like symptoms. In some cases it leads to dengue haemorrhagic fever, which can be fatal.  
  • The risk of dengue is higher during the daytime, particularly at sunrise and sunset.
  • Protect yourself from mosquito bites. There is no vaccine or medication that protects against dengue fever.
Zika virus infection

Zika virus infection is a risk in this country. The mosquito that spreads the virus is found here.  

Travel recommendations:

All travellers should protect themselves from mosquito bites and other diseases spread by insects.   


Malaria

Malaria

There is no risk of malaria in this country.


Animals

Animals and Illness

Travellers are cautioned to avoid contact with animals, including dogs, monkeys, snakes, rodents, and bats. Certain infections found in some areas in South America, like rabies, can be shared between humans and animals.


Person-to-Person

Person-to-Person Infections

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

Three private hospitals in Montevideo offer 24-hour emergency services:

  • British Hospital
  • Sanatorio Americano
  • Hospital de Clínicas

The hospitals accept tourists without insurance coverage. Fees must be paid in cash or by credit card before leaving the hospital.

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

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.

Illegal activities

It is illegal for tourists and other visitors to buy marijuana. Only Uruguayan citizens and permanent residents can register to purchase marijuana.

Penalties for possession, use or trafficking of illegal drugs are severe. Convicted offenders can expect jail sentences and heavy fines.

Imports and exports

Customs authorities may strictly enforce regulations concerning the import or export of items such as:

  • precious jewels
  • gold
  • firearms
  • antiquities
  • medications
  • business equipment

Driving

You should carry an international driving permit.

There is zero tolerance for driving under the influence of alcohol.

The use of cellular phones while driving is prohibited.

More about the International Driving Permit

Dual citizenship

Dual citizenship is legally recognized in Uruguay.

If you are a Canadian citizen, but also a citizen of Uruguay, our ability to offer you consular services may be limited while you're there. You may also be subject to different entry/exit requirements.

General information for travellers with dual citizenship

Money

The currency is the Uruguayan peso (UYU).

Major hotels and restaurants accept credit cards.

Natural disasters and climate

Natural disasters & climate

Droughts, floods and very strong storms with high winds occur year round.

Keep informed of regional weather forecasts and plan accordingly.

Assistance

Assistance

Local services

Emergency services

In case of emergency, dial:

  • police: 911
  • medical assistance: 105
  • firefighters: 104

Consular assistance

Montevideo - Embassy of Canada
Street AddressPlaza Independencia 749, oficina 102, 11100, Montevideo, UruguayTelephone598 (2) 902-2030Fax598 (2) 902-2029Emailmvdeo@international.gc.caInternetwww.uruguay.gc.caFacebookEmbassy of Canada to UruguayTwitter@CanEmbUruguay

For emergency consular assistance, call the Embassy of Canada to Uruguay in Montevideo and follow the instructions. At any time, you may also contact the Emergency Watch and Response Centre in Ottawa.

You may make a collect call to the Emergency Watch and Response Centre in Ottawa at 613-996-8885.


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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