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).
Venezuela is a developing nation but is in the upper half of the world's economies. Located in northern South America along the Atlantic Ocean, its climate is tropical. Temperatures are hot and humid throughout most of the country but moderate in the highlands.
See also: Library article for Yellow Fever
An official yellow fever vaccination certificate may be required depending on your itinerary. Vaccination is usually recommended if you’ll be traveling in areas where there is risk of yellow fever transmission.
- Requirement: A vaccination certificate is required for travelers aged ≥ 1 year coming from Brazil. Note: This also applies to airport layovers longer than 12 hours in Brazil.
- Official Status: listed by WHO as a country where YF transmission risk is present.
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)(2017) Malaria risk due to P. vivax (75%) and P. falciparum (25%) is moderate to high throughout the year in some rural areas of Amazonas, Bolívar and Delta Amacuro states. There is low risk in Anzoátegui, Apure, Monagas and Zulia. Risk of P. falciparum malaria is mostly restricted to municipalities in jungle areas of Amazonas (Alto Orinoco, Atabapo, Atures, Autana, Manapiare) and Bolívar (Angostura, Cedeño, El Callao, Gran Sabana, Heres, Piar, Rocio, Sifontes) and Sucre (Benítez, Bermúdez, Cajigal y Arismendi).
- Recommended prevention in P. vivax risk areas: B – Risk of P. vivax malaria only. Mosquito bite prevention plus chloroquine chemoprophylaxisa
- Recommended prevention in P. falciparum risk areas: C – Risk of P. falciparum malaria, in combination with reported chloroquine and sulfadoxine–pyrimethamine resistance. Mosquito bite prevention plus atovaquone–proguanil or doxycycline or mefloquine chemoprophylaxis (select according to reported side effects and contraindications) a
aAlternatively, for travel to rural areas with low risk of malaria infection, mosquito bite prevention can be combined with stand–by emergency treatment (SBET).
WHO Country List footnote: When available, the date of the most recent update or confirmation is indicated in parentheses in the country list. If no date is indicated, the most recent update or confirmation was provided before 2013.
CDC—Health Information for International Travel (current online edition)Areas with malaria: All areas < 1,700 m (5,577 ft). Present in Angel Falls
- Estimated relative risk of malaria for US travelers: Low.
- Drug resistance4: Chloroquine.
- Malaria species: P. vivax 83%, P. falciparum 17%.
- Recommended chemoprophylaxis: Atovaquone-proguanil, doxycycline, or mefloquine.
4 Refers to P. falciparum malaria unless otherwise noted.
See also: Library article for Travelers' Diarrhea
High risk exists throughout the country, with moderate risk 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.
Insect- and Arthropod-Borne Diseases
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 ongoing violence, civil unrest, and other ongoing security concerns, U.S. (DOS) advises avoiding travel to most neighborhoods in the municipalities of Baruta, Libertador Bolivarian, and Sucre in the Metropolitan District of Caracas; within 80 km (50 mi) of the border with Colombia; and on roads after dark outside of Caracas and advises reconsidering travel (or avoiding nonessential travel) to the rest of the country. U.K. (FCO) and Australia (DFAT) advise avoiding travel within 40 to 80 km (25-50 mi) of the border with Colombia and advise reconsidering travel (or avoiding nonessential travel) to the rest of the country. Canada (GAC) advises reconsidering travel (or avoiding nonessential travel) to this country.
Low risk of attack by domestic terrorist groups exists in areas bordering Colombia. Targets may include domestic and international organizations and businesses.
High risk of kidnapping by terrorist groups exists in areas bordering Colombia. Targets may include foreigners (especially Westerners), journalists, nongovernmental organization workers, missionaries, and aid workers.
High risk of violent crime (armed robbery, home invasion, carjacking, and murder) exists throughout the country, especially in Caracas (particularly in El Ávila National Park and Sabana Grande neighborhood), Simón Bolívar International Airport (including routes to and from Caracas), and shanty towns.
High risk of petty crime exists throughout the country, especially in Caracas and other cities (including on public transportation).
Kidnappings by criminal groups and/or express kidnappings to force cash withdrawals at ATMs occur throughout the country, including Simón Bolívar International Airport and along routes to and from the airport and Caracas. Targets may include foreigners (especially Westerners).
Scams involving credit cards and false identity (such as criminals posing as officials) have been reported.
Risk exists of robberies and/or assaults occurring after consuming intentionally drugged food or drink; tourists are frequently targeted.
Widespread protests and demonstrations in response to political and economic conditions frequently occur throughout the country, especially in Caracas and other major cities, and have the potential to turn violent without warning. Bystanders are at risk of harm from violence or from the response by authorities. Disruption to transportation, free movement, or the ability to carry out daily activities may occur. Shortages of food and basic necessities are pervasive but are not expected to seriously impact typical travelers.
The Venezuelan government has closed several major border crossing points between Táchira State and Colombia until further notice; special measures have been announced in 6 municipalities in Táchira State, including restrictions on the right to free movement, assembly, and protest.
Criminal activity is high throughout the country, but especially on the Araya and Paria peninsulas. Kidnapping and violence related to drug trafficking are a threat at both the Brazilian and Guyanese borders and also in remote areas throughout the country. Foreigners have been specifically targeted in Amazonas State, near the border with Colombia. Cross-border violence, kidnapping, smuggling, and drug trafficking occur frequently in remote areas, specifically in Zulia, Táchira, Barinas, Bolívar, Apure, Amazonas, Anzoátegui, and Sucre states. Travelers should stay in groups and remain in tourist areas.
Basic safety standards for recreational water activities (including scuba diving, snorkeling, jet-skiing, rafting, kayaking, and tubing) may not be in place. 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.
National incidence data on traffic-related injury or death are not available.
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.
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 June through December, coinciding with the hurricane season. Floods, mudslides, and landslides may occur, especially in coastal areas.
Seismic activity occurs, especially along the coast.
Selected Embassies or Consulates in Venezuela
- United States: [+58] 212-975-6411; ve.usembassy.gov
- Canada: [+58] 212-600-3000; www.venezuela.gc.ca
- United Kingdom: [+58] 0-212-319-5800; www.gov.uk/world/organisations/british-embassy-venezuela
- Australia: Australia does not have an embassy or consulate in Venezuela.
Venezuela's Embassies or Consulates in Selected Countries
- In the U.S.: eeuu.embajada.gob.ve
- In Canada: www.misionvenezuela.org
- In the U.K.: reinounido.embajada.gob.ve
- In Australia: australia.embajada.gob.ve
HIV testing is not required to obtain a tourist, work, or residence visa.