US State Department Travel Alerts

Updated on Friday, November 17th, 2017

Travel Alerts are issued to disseminate information about short-term conditions, generally within a particular country, that pose imminent risks to the security of U.S. citizens.

Latest Warnings

  1. Europe Travel Alert
  2. Togo Travel Alert
  3. South Pacific Tropical Cyclone Season 2017-2018 - Travel Alert
  4. Hurricane and Typhoon Season 2017 Travel Alert

1. Europe Travel Alert

Posted on 16 November 2017 | 7:25 am
The Department of State alerts U.S. citizens to the heightened risk of terrorist attacks throughout Europe, particularly during the holiday season.

U.S. citizens should exercise caution at holiday festivals and events.  This Travel Alert expires on January 31, 2018. 

Recent, widely-reported incidents in France, Russia, Sweden, the United Kingdom, Spain, and Finland demonstrate that the Islamic State of Iraq and ash-Sham (ISIS or Da’esh), al-Qa’ida, and their affiliates have the ability to plan and execute terrorist attacks in Europe. Last year, mass casualty attacks occurred at a Christmas market in Berlin, Germany in December and a nightclub in Istanbul, Turkey on New Year’s Eve. While local governments continue counterterrorism operations, the Department remains concerned about the potential for future terrorist attacks. U.S. citizens should always be alert to the possibility that terrorist sympathizers or self-radicalized extremists may conduct attacks with little or no warning.

Extremists continue to focus on tourist locations, transportation hubs, markets/shopping malls, and local government facilities as viable targets. In addition, hotels, clubs, restaurants, places of worship, parks, high-profile events, educational institutions, airports, and other soft targets remain priority locations for possible attacks. U.S. citizens should exercise additional vigilance in these and similar locations.

Terrorists persist in employing a variety of tactics, including firearms, explosives, using vehicles as ramming devices, and sharp-edged weapons that are difficult to detect prior to an attack.

If you are traveling between countries in Europe, please check the website of the U.S. embassy or consulate in your destination city for any recent security messages. Review security information from local officials, who are responsible for the safety and security of all visitors to their host country. U.S. citizens should also:

  • Follow the instructions of local authorities. Monitor media and local information sources and factor updated information into personal travel plans and activities.
  • Be prepared for additional security screening and unexpected disruptions.
  • Stay in touch with your family members and ensure they know how to reach you in the event of an emergency.
  • Have an emergency plan of action ready.
  • Register in our Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP).

We continue to work closely with our European partners and allies on the threat from international terrorism. Information is routinely shared between the United States and our key partners to disrupt terrorist plotting, identify and take action against potential operatives, and strengthen our defenses against potential threats.

For further information:

2. Togo Travel Alert

Posted on 7 November 2017 | 7:25 am
The Department of State alerts U.S. citizens to reoccurring political protests throughout Togo, some of which have been violent, especially in the northern city of Sokodé.

This Travel Alert expires on January 29, 2018.

Many protesters and security force members have been injured, and some killed, during the demonstrations, which began in August 2017. Security forces have used excessive force to disperse crowds. There are reports that government-sponsored vigilantes are using violence and the threat of violence to disrupt protests and intimidate civilians.

Police often use tear gas to disperse demonstrations that cause traffic disruptions in city centers and along National Route 1 and arrest demonstrators. Authorities have also interrupted internet and cellular data services, making communications difficult and less predictable.

Rallies, demonstrations, and protests may occur with little notice and without authorization from government authorities. Even demonstrations intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational and escalate into violence. You should avoid area of demonstrations and exercise caution in the vicinity of any large gatherings, protests, or demonstrations.

  • Have a communications plan that does not rely solely on cellular data.
  • Avoid crowds and remain alert when traveling around the country.
  • Monitor media and local information sources regarding protest-related developments, and have flexible plans for personal travel and activities.
  • Report specific safety concerns to local law enforcement authorities.
  • Stay in touch with your family members and ensure they know how to reach you in the event of an emergency.

For further information:

3. South Pacific Tropical Cyclone Season 2017-2018 - Travel Alert

Posted on 24 October 2017 | 7:25 am
The Department of State alerts U.S. citizens residing in or traveling to the South Pacific region about the ongoing threat of tropical cyclones affecting the area.

While tropical cyclones in the South Pacific may occur throughout the year, the current South Pacific Tropical Cyclone Season begins on November 1, 2017, and ends April 30, 2018. U.S. citizens living in or traveling to the region should monitor local weather reports and take other appropriate actions as needed. This Travel Alert expires on April 30, 2018.

For further information on tropical cyclone warnings in the South Pacific region, please consult the Joint Typhoon Warning Center in Honolulu, the National Weather Service's Central Pacific Hurricane Center, Fiji's regional meteorological center responsible for tropical cyclone warnings in the South Pacific region, or the Government of Australia's Bureau of Meteorology

In the past, U.S. citizens were forced to delay travel (including return travel to the United States) due to infrastructure damage to airports and limited flight availability. If you are planning to travel to regions of the world often affected by hurricanes, typhoons, or cyclones, visit our Tropical Storm Season – Know Before You Go page for more information about the potential dangers and inconveniences associated with your travel before finalizing plans.  

 For further information:

4. Hurricane and Typhoon Season 2017 Travel Alert

Posted on 5 June 2017 | 7:25 am
The Department of State alerts U.S. citizens to the Hurricane and Typhoon Seasons in the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, the Caribbean, and the Gulf of Mexico.

Hurricane and Typhoon Season will last through November 2017, though most tropical cyclones typically develop between May and October. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) recommends that those in hurricane  and typhoon prone regions begin preparations for the upcoming seasons now. This Travel Alert expires on December 1, 2017.

The Atlantic Basin, including the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea: Hurricane Season in the Atlantic began June 1. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Climate Prediction Center expects a 45 percent chance of an above-normal season, a 35 percent chance of a near-normal season, and only a 20 percent chance of a below-normal season. NOAA predicts a 70 percent chance of 11 to 17 named storms (winds of 39 mph or higher), of those, five to nine are predicted to strengthen to a hurricane (winds of 74 mph or higher) and two to four are expected to become major hurricanes (with winds of 111 mph or higher, ranking Category 3, 4 or 5 on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale). NOAA recommends that those in hurricane-prone regions begin preparations for the upcoming season now.

The Eastern Pacific: Hurricane season in the Eastern Pacific began on May 15, 2017. NOAA expects a near- or above-normal season, with a 40 percent chance of an above-normal season, a 40 percent chance of a near-normal season, and a 20 percent chance of a below-normal season. NOAA predicts a 70 percent chance of 14 to 20 named storms, of which six to eleven are expected to become hurricane strength. Of those, three to seven are expected to become major hurricanes (Category 3, 4, or 5 on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale).   

Western and Central Pacific: Typhoon season in the Western and Central Pacific runs from June 1 to November 30. NOAA’s Central Pacific Hurricane Center (CPHC) predicts an 80 percent chance of a near or above normal season. CPHC expects five to eight tropical cyclones to affect the central Pacific this season. For information on typhoon warnings, please consult the Joint Typhoon Warning Center in Honolulu, the National Weather Service's Central Pacific Hurricane Center, and the Regional Specialized Meteorological Center (RSMC) Tokyo - Typhoon Center.

In the past, U.S. citizens were forced to delay travel (including return travel to the United States) due to infrastructure damage to airports and limited flight availability. If you are planning to travel to regions of the world often affected by hurricanes, typhoons, or cyclones, visit our Tropical Storm Season – Know before You Go page for more information about the potential dangers and inconveniences associated with your travel before finalizing plans.  

If you live in or are traveling to storm-prone regions, prepare by organizing a kit in a waterproof container that includes a supply of bottled water, non-perishable food items, a battery-powered or hand-crank radio, any medications taken regularly, and vital documents, especially your passport and other identification. Emergency shelters often provide only very basic resources and may have limited medical and food supplies. For additional tips, visit NOAA and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). 

For further information:

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