Safety and security
- Get advice locally about areas of risk and security concerns
- Take common-sense precautions about safety and security
- Know who to contact in case of an emergency
The political situation in Algeria is reasonably stable but we advise you to avoid all demonstrations and public gatherings, which can sometimes turn confrontational.
Keep yourself informed of events by monitoring local media and staying in contact with your hotel or tour organiser.
The threat from terrorism in Algeria is high, especially outside Algiers and the main cities. Suicide bomb attacks have been carried out in major population centres, including Algiers, in recent years. These attacks have caused death and serious injuries and foreigners have often been targeted.
Avoid all travel to areas within 450km of the Mali and Niger borders with the exception of Tindouf town and Tamanrasset city; to areas within 100km of the Mauritania border; and to areas within 100km of the Tunisian and Libyan borders south of the town of Souk Ahras.
Avoid all but essential travel to Tamanrasset city, Amenas, Tindouf town, the provinces of Boumerdès, Bouira, and Tizi Ouzou east of Algiers (the area known as the Kabylie).
Great care should be taken in the remaining areas of the Provinces of Adrar, Tamanrasset and Illizi which are not covered above and the provinces of Bordj Bou Arreridj, Bejaia and Skikda east of Algiers.
Crime remains relatively low in Algeria but you should take sensible precautions:
- Don’t carry your credit card, travel tickets and money together - leave spare cash and valuables in a safe place.
- Don’t carry your passport unless absolutely necessary and leave a copy of your passport (and travel and insurance documents) with family or friends at home.
- Avoid showing large sums of money in public and don’t use ATMs after dark, especially if you’re alone. Check no one has followed you after conducting your business.
- Avoid dark and unlit streets and stairways, and arrange to be picked up or dropped off as close to your hotel or apartment entrance as possible.
- Keep a close eye on your personal belongings and hold on to them in public places such as internet cafés, train and bus stations.
Petty theft and home burglary happen frequently in Algeria, and muggings are on the rise, especially after dark in the cities. More serious crimes have been reported in which armed men posing as police officers have entered homes and robbed the occupants at gunpoint.
If you’re a victim of a crime while in Algeria, report it to the local police immediately. And you can contact us at the Irish Embassy in Switzerland (Berne) if you need help.
If you’re planning to drive in Algeria, you should be extremely careful. Overland travel between major cities should be avoided, particularly at night.
If you want to drive:
- Bring your international driving licence and make sure you have adequate and appropriate insurance
- Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs is against the law and you risk being detained, fined or banned from driving if caught
- Keep your vehicle doors locked and your bags kept out of sight to prevent opportunistic bag-snatching if you’re stopped at traffic lights
Hiring a vehicle
If you’re hiring a vehicle, we advise you not to hand over your passport as a form of security. If you’re allowing your passport to be photocopied, keep it in your sight at all times.
Check that you have adequate insurance and read the small print of the vehicle hire contract (particularly any waiver that will come into effect if the vehicle is damaged).
Thu, 28 Apr 2016 18:28:21 BST