Events: There continues to be a high threat of violent crime and kidnapping throughout Port-au-Prince, to include the Tabarre neighborhood. The U.S. Embassy has restricted non-official travel of its direct-hire U.S. citizen staff to the immediate Embassy area for security reasons. Additionally, the U.S. Embassy reminds U.S. citizens that kidnapping is widespread, and victims regularly include U.S. citizens. Kidnappers may use sophisticated planning or take advantage of unplanned opportunities, and even convoys have been attacked. Kidnapping cases often involve ransom negotiations, and U.S. citizen victims have been physically harmed during kidnappings. Victims’ families have paid thousands of dollars to rescue their family members.
Violent crime, such as armed robbery and carjacking, is common. Travelers are sometimes followed and violently attacked and robbed shortly after leaving the Port-au-Prince international airport. Robbers and carjackers also attack private vehicles stuck in heavy traffic congestion and often target lone drivers, particularly women. As a result, the U.S. Embassy requires its personnel to use official transportation to and from the airport.
Haiti has the highest (Level 4) Travel Advisory (“Do Not Travel”) for kidnapping, crime, and civil unrest. The travel advisory for Haiti, available at travel.state.gov, notes that kidnapping is widespread, and victims regularly include U.S. citizens. Those deciding to travel and/or remain in Haiti should carefully consider the information available on travel.state.gov regarding the extremely high risk of the kidnapping threat in Haiti.
The U.S. Embassy urges U.S. citizens who travel to Haiti despite this warning to register their trip with the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program. STEP is a free service that allows U.S. citizens and nationals traveling and living abroad to enroll their trip with the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate so that we can provide important security and other information to the U.S. citizen community.
Actions to take:
- Use extreme caution while traveling in the country.
- When driving, make sure your car doors are locked and windows up.
- If possible, avoid driving at night.
- Avoid visiting establishments after dark without secure, on-site parking.
- Be alert to your surroundings, and pay attention to people approaching your car while stopped in traffic.
- Avoid public displays of wealth (nice car, jewelry, smartphones).
- U.S. Embassy Port au Prince, Haiti
Tabarre 41, Route de Tabarre
Non-emergency inquiries: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Contact the State Department’s Bureau of Consular Affairs
1-888-407-4747 toll-free from the United States and Canada
1-202-501-4444 from other countries