Venezuela travel advice

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Venezuela - AVOID ALL TRAVEL

Avoid all travel to Venezuela due to the significant level of violent crime, the unstable political and economic situations and the decline in basic living conditions, including shortages of medication, gasoline and water.

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Safety and security

Guayana Esequiba region

The security environment is volatile at the border between Venezuela and Guyana due to the ongoing dispute over the Guayana Esequiba region.

If you are in Venezuela, avoid discussing the dispute of the Guayana Esequiba region.

If you choose to travel near the border with Guyana:

  • exercise caution at all times
  • monitor local media to stay informed on the evolving situation
  • follow instructions from local authorities and security forces

The security situation in Venezuela remains unstable and could deteriorate with very little warning.

International borders

Flights to and from Aruba are suspended until further notice.

Direct flights to and from the U.S. are also suspended.

Armed criminal groups frequently operate on both sides of the border with Colombia, conducting illegal activities such as:

  • smuggling
  • drug trafficking
  • black market sales

There is a high military presence in a number of municipalities located along the border.  Nevertheless, general lawlessness, particularly in the area within 20 km of the border with Colombia, increases the risk of extortion and kidnapping in this region.

Smuggling, drug trafficking and illegal mining also occur along the borders with Brazil and Guyana which pose a greater security risk in this region.

Stay informed of the security situation, as well as which border crossings are open, and their hours of opening.

At the airport

Simón Bolívar International Airport in Maiquetía (Caracas) is dangerous. Incidents of violent crime occur frequently, both inside the facilities and in the surrounding areas.

Kidnappers and armed robbers have targeted foreigners, who are assumed to be holding large amounts of foreign currency. Criminals often approach tourists at the airport and offer to exchange money. They may also pose as taxi drivers.

  • Arrange your travel so that you arrive and depart the airport during daylight hours
  • Have a friend, family member or a trusted transportation service waiting to pick you up upon arrival
  • Don’t take a taxi from this airport

Crime

Violent crime

Venezuela has one of the world’s highest homicide rates.

Violent crimes are pervasive throughout the country but particularly frequent in the capital city of Caracas. Crimes include:

  • homicide
  • armed robbery
  • home invasion
  • carjacking
  • kidnapping for ransom

Violence against locals and visitors alike can occur in both urban and rural areas, including in those popular with tourists.

Organized criminal groups and gangs are rampant. Many criminals carry firearms, and victims are often injured or killed for failing to cooperate.

  • If you are threatened, stay calm and don’t resist
  • Don’t walk through city streets at night, and avoid walking alone in less busy or isolated areas during the day
  • Don’t visit “barrios” (heavily populated slums), especially in eastern and western areas of Caracas but also in any part of the country. Barrios are extremely unsafe

Petty crime

Street crime is common, particularly in major cities, and often results in violence. Pickpockets are active in crowded buses and subway stations.

Criminals often target pedestrians and motorists, sometimes from motorcycles.

Authorities (e.g. police, airport, immigration) have harassed and extorted money from travellers. If you experience such problems, report the incident to the Canadian embassy to Colombia, in Bogotá.

Police response times are poor or non-existent in most parts of the country, and most reported crimes don’t result in prosecution.

  • Ensure that your belongings, including your passport and other travel documents, are secure at all times
  • Don’t show signs of affluence or display valuables, particularly jewellery and electronics, including cell phones
  • Avoid carrying large sums of cash and keep foreign currency out of sight
  • Maintain a low profile and remain aware of your surroundings at all times

Kidnapping

Express kidnappings are frequent and can occur anywhere in the country. Victims are usually kidnapped from the street and forced to take the criminals to their houses to give foreign currency, electronics or other valuables.

  • Be careful when dealing with recent acquaintances, especially when they offer rides
  • Be discrete when handling money in public

Fraud

Credit card and ATM fraud may occur.

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
Overseas fraud

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. These items may contain drugs that could put you at risk of sexual assault and robbery.

Shortages

There are shortages of medicine and medical supplies. This has led to difficulties in the health care sector.

Basic food and personal care products are available but very costly. You will need U.S. currency to purchase them.

Service disruptions

Power outages and rationing of electricity is common in many parts of the country, including in Caracas. Outages lasting several days may occur suddenly. Other services are often disrupted during such events, including: 

  • medical services
  • public water supply
  • communications, mainly cellular telephone and Internet
  • banking
  • purchasing goods
  • transportation, including flights

Rioting, fighting and theft occur during power outages.

Water rationing is common in most parts of the country, even during the rainy season, due to water shortages in municipalities.

Fuel may also be scarce outside of cities, particularly in the border areas with Colombia, Brazil and Guyana.

Ensure that your emergency kit is complete.

Emergency kit

Demonstrations and social unrest

Large-scale and violent demonstrations frequently occur in Caracas and many other areas across the country. They have resulted in many arrests, including of foreign reporters, injuries and deaths in the past.

Demonstrations can take many forms, including:

  • large-scale gatherings
  • marches
  • national strikes
  • roadblocks, including on major highways

Demonstrations can lead to disruptions to traffic and public transportation.

  • Avoid areas where demonstrations and large gatherings are taking place
  • Don’t attempt to cross road blockades, even if they appear unattended
  • Don’t participate in political discussions or activities in public, or appear to take sides on any local issue related to the current political situation
  • Follow the instructions of local authorities
  • Monitor local media for information on ongoing demonstrations

Mass gatherings (large-scale events)

Communications

Telecommunication infrastructure is in a state of disrepair. Interruptions are frequent. It is very difficult to make international calls.

Some areas don’t have cellular coverage. Check local providers’ coverage.

Road travel

Road conditions and road safety are poor throughout the country.

Road conditions

Unmarked road damage or construction poses a hazard. Street lighting is often inadequate.

After heavy rains, sewer grates may have been displaced and potholes may be hidden in puddles.

Outside of cities, gas stations and restaurants can be few and far between, and gas pumps are often empty.

Road safety

Drivers do not respect traffic laws. They are extremely aggressive and reckless. Drinking and driving is prevalent.

Incidents of crime along intercity roads are common. Armed bandits set up illegal roadblocks and rob vehicles, including intercity buses.

Crime increases at nightfall.

There have been incidents of motorists being robbed after stopping to assess the damage to their vehicle from improvised spikes on the road or stone throwing from highway overpasses and bridges near poorer neighbourhoods.

  • Keep your valuables out of plain sight
  • Remain vigilant when driving, especially when stopped
  • Always drive with the doors locked and windows closed
  • Avoid driving after dark

Public transportation

Public transportation has declined in number and quality due to the shortage of parts and reduced capacity for maintenance and repair of vehicles.

There is a risk of theft in the subway, and some subway stations are unsafe.

  • Only take the subway during daylight hours, and avoid peak hours
  • Seek advice from locals before using this means of transportation

Buses

There is a high risk of theft on both inner city and intercity buses, especially at night.

Taxis

Licensed taxis are safer than unlicensed taxis. Mototaxis are not recommended as drivers can be reckless.

  • Pre-book a licensed, radio-dispatched taxi
  • Avoid hailing a taxi in the street
  • Advise a friend of your movements, the taxi company’s name and the taxi number

Piracy

Pirate attacks and armed robbery against ships occur in coastal waters. Mariners should take appropriate precautions.

Live piracy report - International Maritime Bureau

Air travel

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

Information about foreign domestic airlines

Travelling within or out of the country on short notice can be difficult. International and domestic commercial flights are limited. Some international airlines have reduced the number of flights arriving to and departing from Venezuela or have suspended services altogether.

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Entry and 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 Venezuelan authorities. It can, however, change at any time.

Verify this information with the Foreign Representatives 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 at least 6 months beyond the date you expect to leave Venezuela.

Passport for official travel

Different entry rules may apply.

Official travel

Passport with “X” gender identifier

While the Government of Canada issues passports with an “X” gender identifier, it cannot guarantee your entry or transit through other countries. You might face entry restrictions in countries that do not recognize the “X” gender identifier. Before you leave, check with the closest foreign representative for your destination.

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 foreign representative for your destination.

Useful links

Visas

Tourist visa: required
Business visa: required
Work visa: required
Student visa: required

Other entry requirements

Customs officials may ask you to show them a return or onward ticket and proof of sufficient funds to cover your stay. 

Ensure that you receive an entrance stamp in your passport from Venezuela’s immigration office at the port of entry.

Dual citizenship

Canadian citizens who also hold Venezuelan citizenship must enter and exit Venezuela using a Venezuelan passport.

Children born outside Venezuela to Venezuelan parents are assumed to be Venezuelan citizens and must also enter and exit the country using a Venezuelan passport.

Although immigration authorities have allowed dual citizens to enter without a Venezuelan passport, they have later prevented them from leaving the country.

Venezuelan documents

It is very difficult to obtain a new Venezuelan passport or to extend an expired passport. As a result, you may not be able to obtain a passport in Venezuela for your Canadian-born child.

If you are a dual citizen and planning to travel to Venezuela, make sure your Venezuelan passport is valid beyond the duration of your trip. If you need to renew your passport or obtain a new one for your Canadian-born child, contact the nearest Venezuelan embassy or consulate to make arrangements.

If you enter Venezuela with an expired Venezuelan passport, authorities may not stamp your travel documents upon entry. This may lead to difficulties when exiting the country.

Servicio Administrativo de Identificación, Migración y Extranjería (SAIME)  - Venezuelan Migration Department (in Spanish)

Children and travel

Children born outside Venezuela to Venezuelan parents are assumed to be Venezuelan citizens and must enter and exit the country using a Venezuelan passport.

Travelling with children

Yellow fever

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

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Health

Relevant Travel Health Notices

This section contains information on possible health risks and restrictions regularly found or ongoing in the destination. Follow this advice to lower your risk of becoming ill while travelling. Not all risks are listed below.

Consult a health care professional or visit a travel health clinic preferably 6 weeks before you travel to get personalized health advice and recommendations.

Routine vaccines

Be sure that your routine vaccinations, as per your province or territory, are up-to-date before travelling, regardless of your destination.

Some of these vaccinations include measles-mumps-rubella (MMR), diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, polio, varicella (chickenpox), influenza and others.

Pre-travel vaccines and medications

You may be at risk for preventable diseases while travelling in this destination. Talk to a travel health professional about which medications or vaccines may be right for you, based on your destination and itinerary. 

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 a risk of yellow fever in this country.

Country Entry Requirement*    

  • Proof of vaccination is required if arriving from Brazil, including travellers having transited for more than 12 hours through an airport in Brazil.

Recommendation          

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.

Hepatitis A

There is a risk of hepatitis A in this destination. It is a disease of the liver. People can get hepatitis A if they ingest contaminated food or water, eat foods prepared by an infectious person, or if they have close physical contact (such as oral-anal sex) with an infectious person, although casual contact among people does not spread the virus.

 

Practise safe food and water precautions and wash your hands often. Vaccination is recommended for all travellers to areas where hepatitis A is present.

Measles

Measles is a highly contagious viral disease. It can spread quickly from person to person by direct contact and through droplets in the air.

Anyone who is not protected against measles is at risk of being infected with it when travelling internationally.

Regardless of where you are going, talk to a health care professional before travelling to make sure you are fully protected against measles.

Hepatitis B

 Hepatitis B is a risk in every destination. It is a viral liver disease that is easily transmitted from one person to another through exposure to blood and body fluids containing the hepatitis B virus.  Travellers who may be exposed to blood or other bodily fluids (e.g., through sexual contact, medical treatment, sharing needles, tattooing, acupuncture or occupational exposure) are at higher risk of getting hepatitis B.

Hepatitis B vaccination is recommended for all travellers. Prevent hepatitis B infection by practicing safe sex, only using new and sterile drug equipment, and only getting tattoos and piercings in settings that follow public health regulations and standards.

COVID-19

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is an infectious viral disease. It can spread from person to person by direct contact and through droplets in the air.

It is recommended that all eligible travellers complete a COVID-19 vaccine series along with any additional recommended doses in Canada before travelling. Evidence shows that vaccines are very effective at preventing severe illness, hospitalization and death from COVID-19. While vaccination provides better protection against serious illness, you may still be at risk of infection from the virus that causes COVID-19. Anyone who has not completed a vaccine series is at increased risk of being infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 and is at greater risk for severe disease when travelling internationally.

Before travelling, verify your destination’s COVID-19 vaccination entry/exit requirements. Regardless of where you are going, talk to a health care professional before travelling to make sure you are adequately protected against COVID-19.

Influenza

 The best way to protect yourself from seasonal influenza (flu) is to get vaccinated every year. Get the flu shot at least 2 weeks before travelling.  

 The flu occurs worldwide. 

  •  In the Northern Hemisphere, the flu season usually runs from November to   April.
  •  In the Southern Hemisphere, the flu season usually runs between April and   October.
  •  In the tropics, there is flu activity year round. 

The flu vaccine available in one hemisphere may only offer partial protection against the flu in the other hemisphere.

The flu virus spreads from person to person when they cough or sneeze or by touching objects and surfaces that have been contaminated with the virus. Clean your hands often and wear a mask if you have a fever or respiratory symptoms.

Malaria

Malaria is a serious and sometimes fatal disease that is caused by parasites spread through the bites of mosquitoes.
 
There is a risk of malaria in certain areas and/or during a certain time of year in this destination. 

Antimalarial medication may be recommended depending on your itinerary and the time of year you are travelling. Consult a health care professional or visit a travel health clinic before travelling to discuss your options. It is recommended to do this 6 weeks before travel, however, it is still a good idea any time before leaving. 
 
Protect yourself from mosquito bites at all times: 
• Cover your skin and use an approved insect repellent on uncovered skin. 
• Exclude mosquitoes from your living area with screening and/or closed, well-sealed doors and windows.
• Use insecticide-treated bed nets if mosquitoes cannot be excluded from your living area. 
• Wear permethrin-treated clothing. 
 
If you develop symptoms similar to malaria when you are travelling or up to a year after you return home, see a health care professional immediately. Tell them where you have been travelling or living. 

Rabies

In this destination, rabies is commonly carried by dogs and some wildlife, including bats. Rabies is a deadly disease that spreads to humans primarily through bites or scratches from an infected animal. While travelling, take precautions, including keeping your distance from animals (including free-roaming dogs), and closely supervising children.

If you are bitten or scratched by a dog or other animal while travelling, immediately wash the wound with soap and clean water and see a health care professional. In this destination, rabies treatment may be limited or may not be available, therefore you may need to return to Canada for treatment. 

Before travel, discuss rabies vaccination with a health care professional. It may be recommended for travellers who are at high risk of exposure (e.g., occupational risk such as veterinarians and wildlife workers, children, adventure travellers and spelunkers, and others in close contact with animals). 

Safe food and water precautions

Many illnesses can be caused by eating food or drinking beverages contaminated by bacteria, parasites, toxins, or viruses, or by swimming or bathing in contaminated water.

  • Learn more about food and water precautions to take to avoid getting sick by visiting our eat and drink safely abroad page. Remember: Boil it, cook it, peel it, or leave it!
  • Avoid getting water into your eyes, mouth or nose when swimming or participating in activities in freshwater (streams, canals, lakes), particularly after flooding or heavy rain. Water may look clean but could still be polluted or contaminated.
  • Avoid inhaling or swallowing water while bathing, showering, or swimming in pools or hot tubs. 

Travellers' diarrhea

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.

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 of typhoid, especially those exposed to places with poor sanitation, should speak to a health care professional about vaccination.  

Schistosomiasis

There is a risk of schistosomiasis in this destination. Schistosomiasis is a parasitic disease caused by tiny worms (blood flukes) which can be found in freshwater (lakes, rivers, ponds, and wetlands). The worms can break the skin, and their eggs can cause stomach pain, diarrhea, flu-like symptoms, or urinary problems. Schistosomiasis mostly affects underdeveloped and rural communities, particularly agricultural and fishing communities.

Most travellers are at low risk. Travellers should avoid contact with untreated freshwater such as lakes, rivers, and ponds (e.g., swimming, bathing, wading, ingesting). There is no vaccine or medication available to prevent infection.

Insect bite prevention

Many diseases are spread by the bites of infected insects such as mosquitoes, ticks, fleas or flies. When travelling to areas where infected insects may be present:

  • Use insect repellent (bug spray) on exposed skin
  • Cover up with light-coloured, loose clothes made of tightly woven materials such as nylon or polyester
  • Minimize exposure to insects
  • Use mosquito netting when sleeping outdoors or in buildings that are not fully enclosed

To learn more about how you can reduce your risk of infection and disease caused by bites, both at home and abroad, visit our insect bite prevention page.

Find out what types of insects are present where you’re travelling, when they’re most active, and the symptoms of the diseases they spread.

Chikungunya

There is a risk of chikungunya in this country.  The risk may vary between regions of a 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
  • In this country, dengue is a risk to travellers. It is a viral disease spread to humans by mosquito bites.
  • Dengue can cause flu-like symptoms. In some cases, it can lead to severe dengue, which can be fatal.
  • The level of risk of dengue changes seasonally, and varies from year to year. The level of risk also varies between regions in a country and can depend on the elevation in the region.
  • Mosquitoes carrying dengue typically bite during the daytime, particularly around sunrise and sunset.
  • Protect yourself from mosquito bites. There is no vaccine or medication that protects against dengue.
Zika virus

Zika virus is a risk in this country. 

Zika virus is primarily spread through the bite of an infected mosquito. It can also be sexually transmitted. Zika virus can cause serious birth defects.

During your trip:

  • Prevent mosquito bites at all times.
  • Use condoms correctly or avoid sexual contact, particularly if you are pregnant.

If you are pregnant or planning a pregnancy, you should discuss the potential risks of travelling to this destination with your health care provider. You may choose to avoid or postpone travel. 

For more information, see Zika virus: Pregnant or planning a pregnancy.

American trypanosomiasis

American trypanosomiasis (Chagas disease) is a risk in this country. It is caused by a parasite spread by infected triatomine bugs. The infection can be inactive for decades, but humans can eventually develop complications causing disability and even death.

Risk is generally low for most travellers. Protect yourself from triatomine bugs, which are active at night, by using mosquito nets if staying in poorly-constructed housing. There is no vaccine available for Chagas disease.

Animal precautions

Some infections, such as rabies and influenza, can be shared between humans and animals. Certain types of activities may increase your chance of contact with animals, such as travelling in rural or forested areas, camping, hiking, and visiting wet markets (places where live animals are slaughtered and sold) or caves.

Travellers are cautioned to avoid contact with animals, including dogs, livestock (pigs, cows), monkeys, snakes, rodents, birds, and bats, and to avoid eating undercooked wild game.

Closely supervise children, as they are more likely to come in contact with animals.

Person-to-person infections

Stay home if you’re sick and practise proper cough and sneeze etiquette, which includes coughing or sneezing into a tissue or the bend of your arm, not your hand. Reduce your risk of colds, the flu and other illnesses by:

  •  washing your hands often
  • avoiding or limiting the amount of time spent in closed spaces, crowded places, or at large-scale events (concerts, sporting events, rallies)
  • avoiding close physical contact with people who may be showing symptoms of illness 

Sexually transmitted infections (STIs), HIV, and mpox are spread through blood and bodily fluids; use condoms, practise safe sex, and limit your number of sexual partners. Check with your local public health authority pre-travel to determine your eligibility for mpox vaccine.  

Medical services and facilities

Good health care is limited in availability. Public health care has deteriorated, which has placed increased pressure on private facilities which are now low on supplies and extremely costly.

Payment is required in advance of treatment.

Emergency and ambulance services are very limited and response times are slow, especially in rural areas.

Make sure you get travel insurance that includes coverage for medical evacuation and hospital stays.

Travel health and safety

Medication

There is a severe shortage of pharmaceutical drugs throughout the country.

Some medicines are no longer available in hospitals. Most hospital pharmacies and drugstores no longer stock basic medicine or supplies.

  • Bring all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you may need with you
  • Pack an extra supply in case you are away for longer than expected

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.

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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.

Drugs

Penalties for possession, use or trafficking of illegal drugs are severe. Convicted offenders can expect immediate detention and lengthy jail terms.

All departing visitors are thoroughly screened for drugs by the Bolivarian National Guard. Pack your luggage yourself and keep it with you at all times. Don’t carry anything through customs for anyone else.

Drugs, alcohol and travel

Identification

You must carry your passport at all times.

Photography

Photography of sensitive installations, including the presidential palace, military sites, government buildings and airports, is prohibited.

Importations

You must declare imports worth more than US$1,000 to customs officials and pay appropriate taxes.

Dual citizenship

Dual citizenship is legally recognized in Venezuela.

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

Travellers with dual citizenship

International Child Abduction

The Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction is an international treaty. It can help parents with the return of children who have been removed to or retained in certain countries in violation of custody rights. The convention applies between Canada and Venezuela.

If your child was wrongfully taken to, or is being held in Venezuela, and if the applicable conditions are met, you may apply for the return of your child to the Venezuelan court.

If you are in this situation:

  • act as quickly as you can
  • contact the Central Authority for your province or territory of residence for information on starting an application under The Hague Convention
  • consult a lawyer in Canada and in Venezuela to explore all the legal options for the return of your child
  • report the situation to the nearest Canadian government office abroad or to the Vulnerable Children’s Consular Unit at Global Affairs Canada by calling the Emergency Watch and Response Centre

If your child was removed from a country other than Canada, consult a lawyer to determine if The Hague Convention applies.

Be aware that Canadian consular officials cannot interfere in private legal matters or in another country’s judicial affairs.

Useful links

Driving

Stopping at Bolivarian National Guard of Venezuela and police checkpoints is mandatory. There are many control points throughout the country. Follow all instructions and have vehicle and insurance papers and passports readily available.

Vehicles may be searched. It is not uncommon for authorities to seek bribes.

In the case of an accident, don’t move your vehicle until a traffic police officer fills out a report. Police response times are often slow.

You should carry an international driving permit.

International Driving Permit

Money

The currency in Venezuela is the Venezuelan bolivar (Bs or VEF). It can be difficult to obtain local currency.

US dollars are widely accepted.

Carry small bank notes to facilitate daily transactions.

You must change money at the official government rate.

Banks often restrict transactions to their clients only. Official exchange houses are scarce outside of major cities and the law prohibits the sale and purchase of any foreign currency outside of authorized institutions. You are subject to a fine if you are caught exchanging foreign currency outside of authorized institutions. Very few exchange houses or banks will exchange bolívars outside Venezuela.

You cannot rely on wire transfers as a source of emergency funds.

Cash withdrawals from foreign bank accounts at ATMs are not possible. Malfunctions and insufficient cash are recurring problems. Many ATMs don’t accept international credit cards or ask for additional codes to confirm identity.

  • Change your money in the official exchange offices only
  • Don’t use the black market
  • Only U.S. dollars can be exchanged

Identification is required for a credit card transaction.

If you are entering or leaving Venezuela with more than US$10,000, you are required to declare it to the authorities.

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Natural disasters and climate

Rainy season

The rainy season extends from May to December. Heavy rains, flooding and landslides can occur during this period.

In the event of heavy rains, coastal roads and highways may not be fully operational and some utilities, especially water services, may be disrupted.

Earthquakes

Venezuela’s coastal range, which includes Caracas, is located in an active seismic zone. It is prone to earthquakes and landslides.

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Need help?

Local services

Emergency services

Dial 911 for emergency assistance.

Consular assistance

The Embassy of Canada to Venezuela, in Caracas, has temporarily suspended its operations. You can obtain consular assistance and further consular information from the Embassy of Canada to Colombia, in Bogotá.

Bogotá - Embassy of Canada
Street AddressCra. 7, No. 114-33, Piso 14, Bogotá, D.C. ColombiaTelephone(57-601) 657-9800Fax(57-601) 657-9912Emailbgotaconsular@international.gc.caInternethttps://www.Canada.ca/Canada-And-ColombiaFacebookEmbassy of Canada to ColombiaTwitter@CanadaColombiaOther social mediaEmbassy of Canada to Colombia
Consular district

Aruba, Bonaire, Curaçao, Venezuela

Appointment Book your appointment online

Making international phone calls from Venezuela may be challenging. For emergency consular assistance, send an email to sos@international.gc.ca to request a phone call. A consular officer will call you back without delay. Ensure that you provide a phone number where we can reach you.

From elsewhere, call the Embassy of Canada to Colombia, in Bogotá, and follow the instructions. At any time, you may also contact the Emergency Watch and Response Centre in Ottawa.

Disclaimer

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, expressed 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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