The health risk information presented here is summarized from Shoreland Travax®, a decision-support tool used by health care providers to perform a detailed health risk analysis based on specific locations, individual travel styles, and traveler risk behaviors. Travax provides practitioners current, independently researched malaria risk and prevention recommendations in a map-based format that goes beyond the annual WHO and CDC statements included here. Not included here are current reports from Travax of disease outbreaks or environmental events that may pose elevated risks to travelers’ health and safety. The Providers section of this site offers a directory of health care providers who utilize Shoreland Travax for travel health counseling. Learn more about the detailed reports and maps available from these practitioners (includes links to samples).
Kuwait is an industrialized nation in the top 25% of the world's economies. Located in the Middle East (south of Iraq and north of Saudi Arabia), the climate is classified as dry (arid).
Depending on your itinerary, your personal risk factors, and the length of your visit, your health care provider may offer you vaccination against hepatitis A, hepatitis B, influenza, measles, mumps, rubella, meningococcal meningitis, rabies, or typhoid fever. Routine immunizations, such as those that prevent tetanus/diphtheria or "childhood" diseases, should be reviewed and updated as needed.
See also: Library article for Malaria
The following is current information as reported by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC):
WHO—International Travel and Health (current online update, Country List)No statement given.
CDC—Health Information for International Travel (current online edition)Areas with malaria: None.
Drug resistance: Not applicable.
See also: Library article for Travelers' Diarrhea
Moderate risk exists throughout the country, including in deluxe accommodations. Food and beverage precautions may reduce the likelihood of illness.
Travelers should carry loperamide for self-treatment of diarrhea and, if risk is moderate to high, an antibiotic to add if diarrhea is severe. Consult a knowledgeable health care provider regarding which antibiotic is appropriate for you and most effective for your destination.
Other Food-Borne Illnesses
Precautions to prevent brucellosis may be needed.
Insect- and Arthropod-Borne Diseases
Leishmaniasis may pose a risk. Personal protective measures are important.
Other Disease and Health Risks
The material below includes information from the U.S. Department of State (DOS), U.K. Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO), Global Affairs Canada (GAC), and Australia's Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), as well as from additional open-source material. Standard safety precautions that apply to all international travel can be found in the Library article Safety and Security.
Consular Travel Advice
Due to landmines and ongoing security concerns, U.S. (DOS) advises avoiding travel to desert areas bordering Iraq, the town of Al Jahra, and Jleeb Al-Shuyoukh area of Kuwait City. U.K. (FCO), Canada (GAC), and Australia (DFAT) have no current warnings.
Risk of attack by transnational terrorist groups exists throughout the country. Targets may include domestic and international organizations and businesses; public places and events, including those frequented by tourists; and transportation systems.
Low risk of violent crime (armed robbery and sexual assault) exists throughout the country, mainly in the town of Jleeb Al-Shuyoukh and remote areas.
Low risk of petty crime exists throughout the country, mainly in remote areas. Theft of valuables from unattended vehicles is common.
Protests and demonstrations occur throughout the country and are generally peaceful, but have the potential to turn violent without warning. Bystanders are at risk of harm from violence or from the response by authorities.
Landmines and other unexploded ordnance are present throughout the country, especially in rural desert areas and areas bordering Iraq.
Restricted areas may exist in areas bordering Iraq and Saudi Arabia.
Territorial disputes occur in international waters of the Persian Gulf, including near the islands of Abu Musa and Greater and Lesser Tunbs.
Rent water sports equipment from reputable operators. Scuba dive only with personnel certified by PADI or NAUI, and use equipment only from PADI- or NAUI-certified dive operators.
Desert excursions should only be undertaken with organized groups and experienced guides. Participants should inform someone not on the tour of their itinerary and anticipated return time. An adequate supply of food and water for extended unforeseen delays is essential.
High risk of traffic-related injury or death exists. The road-traffic death rate is 12 to 24 per 100,000 population. The rate is less than 10 in most high-income countries. Speed laws are poorly enforced. Driving at night is not advised. Seek local advice before traveling on roads outside urban areas after dark.
Traffic flows on the right-hand side of the road. Travelers (including drivers and pedestrians) accustomed to traffic moving on the opposite side should be vigilant when navigating traffic.
Many taxis are unsafe. Use taxis from official ranks or dispatched via smart phone app or radio from a reputable company and ascertain the license or identification number of the dispatched vehicle.
U.S. Federal Aviation Administration has determined that the civil aviation authority of this country oversees its air carriers in accordance with minimum international safety standards.
The rainy season is from December through January. Floods, mudslides, and landslides may occur.
Sandstorms and dust storms frequently occur, especially from March through August.
Extreme heat (which can lead to heat-related illness) occurs from June through September.
Selected Embassies or Consulates in Kuwait
- United States: [+965] 2259-1001; kw.usembassy.gov
- Canada: [+965] 2256-3025; www.kuwait.gc.ca
- United Kingdom: [+965] 2259-4320; www.gov.uk/world/organisations/british-embassy-kuwait
- Australia: [+965] 232-2422; www.kuwait.embassy.gov.au
Kuwait's Embassies or Consulates in Selected Countries
- In the U.S.: www.kuwaitembassy.us
- In Canada: www.embassyofkuwait.ca
- In the U.K.: www.kuwaitculturaloffice.org.uk
- In Australia: www.kuwaitemb-australia.com
HIV and hepatitis testing are required to obtain a work or residence visa. Travelers, including short-term travelers, may be detained or deported after arrival if found to be positive for HIV or hepatitis.