Official advice for New Zealanders living and travelling overseas

Central African Republic

ALERT - COVID-19 - Do not travel overseas at this time. Due to the difficulty travellers are experiencing returning home, New Zealanders overseas need to take steps to stay safely where they are and shelter in place....Read more

ALERT - COVID-19 - Do not travel overseas at this time. Due to the difficulty travellers are experiencing returning home, New Zealanders overseas need to take steps to stay safely where they are and shelter in place....Read more

  • Reviewed: 19 March 2020, 14:32 NZDT
  • Still current at: 15 July 2020

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Civil Unrest/Political Tension
There has been sustained violence in CAR since 2013 and the security situation remains unstable and dangerous. Rebel activity and lawlessness is prevalent throughout the country and despite the presence of international peacekeeping forces the potential for sectarian violence remains high.

The security situation in the capital, Bangui, remains fragile and there continue to be reports of violence, killing and looting.

Violent Crime
In the absence of effective law and order, levels of violent crime in CAR, including armed robbery and sexual assault, are very high. Foreigners, including aid workers, have been the targets of violence and kidnapping in the past. We strongly advise against travelling after dark or walking alone in isolated areas.

Travel outside Bangui is dangerous. Armed patrols operate in many areas and there have been attacks on travellers, vehicles and convoys, resulting in deaths. Illegal road blocks are used in some areas to extort money from travellers through bogus fines or intimidation. Road block operators may resort to violence in attempts to obtain money or possessions.

The security situation in border areas, especially with South Sudan and the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), is particularly dangerous. The borders with Chad and the DRC are closed and other land borders may close at short notice.

General Travel Advice
As there is no New Zealand diplomatic presence in CAR, the ability of the government to provide consular assistance to New Zealand citizens is severely limited. New Zealanders travelling or living in CAR should have a comprehensive travel insurance policy in place that includes provision for medical evacuation by air. You should check that your travel insurance policy covers travel to CAR as exclusions are likely to apply.

Due to the ongoing situation in CAR, access to medical treatment is limited and there are shortages of even the most basic medications and medical supplies. 

New Zealanders who decide to travel or live in CAR against our advice are strongly encouraged to register their details with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

Travel tips

See our regional advice for Africa

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