Official advice for New Zealanders living and travelling overseas

  • Reviewed: 24 July 2017, 17:57 NZST
  • Still current at: 18 August 2017

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High Risk

There is high risk to your security in the Port-au-Prince districts of Carrefour, Cite Soleil, Martissant and Bel Air due to high levels of violent crime. We advise against all tourist and other non-essential travel.

Some Risk

There is some risk to your security elsewhere in Haiti due to violent crime and political tensions and we advise caution.

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Violent Crime
The security situation in Haiti is unpredictable and crime levels are high throughout the country. Murder, armed robbery and carjacking is prevalent  and there is an increased risk at night and in isolated areas. Local law enforcement’s response to crime is often limited.

New Zealanders are advised to exercise a high degree of vigilance at all times, particularly in Port-au-Prince.  We recommend avoiding travelling after dark and the use of public transport, including shared taxis (tap-taps) and buses. We also recommend making adequate security arrangements to avoid travelling alone in Haiti. The presence of one or more travelling companions with reliable local knowledge may help mitigate the risks.

Criminals have been known to follow travellers from the airport in Port-au-Prince to carry out robberies or carjackings. We recommend travelling with doors locked and windows up at all times and arranging transport from the airport before arrival. No resistance should be given if you are the victim of an armed robbery or carjacking as this could lead to an escalation in violence.

There is a threat of kidnapping in Haiti. Most kidnappings are financially motivated and victims are often targeted due to their perceived wealth. It is therefore advisable to avoid wearing or displaying items that appear valuable, such as jewellery and mobile devices.

New Zealanders are advised to take particular care when withdrawing money from banks, as robbery gangs on motorcycles have been known to target customers as they leave banks.

Civil Unrest
The political situation in Haiti is unpredictable. Demonstrations and road blocks are commonplace in Port-au-Prince and other cities. We recommend you to avoid all demonstrations, protests and rallies as they have the potential to turn violent. You should monitor local media and government announcements for information. Adhere to any instructions and restrictions issued by the local authorities, including curfews issued in response to protest activity.

General Travel Advice
As there is no New Zealand diplomatic presence in Haiti, the ability of the government to provide consular assistance to New Zealand citizens is severely limited.

New Zealanders travelling or living in Haiti should have a comprehensive travel insurance policy in place that includes provision for medical evacuation by air.

New Zealanders in Haiti are encouraged to register their details with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

Travel tips

See our regional advice for the Caribbean

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