Bangladesh - Consular Information Sheet
March 2, 2001
COUNTRY DESCRIPTION: Bangladesh has a developing economy.
Tourist facilities outside major cities and tourist areas are
ENTRY REQUIREMENTS: A passport and onward/return ticket
are required. A visa is not required for a tourist stay of up
to 15 days. Visas (landing permits) are available for a fee upon
arrival by air. Further information on entry requirements can
be obtained from the
Embassy of the People's Republic of Bangladesh, 3510 International
Drive, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20008, telephone 202-244-0183, fax
202-244-5366, web site http://www.bangladeshembassy.com or from
the Bangladesh consulates in New York, 211 E. 43rd Street, Suite
502, New York, NY 10017, telephone 212-599-6767, or the
Bangladesh Consulate in Los Angeles, 10850 Wilshire Boulevard,
Suite 1250, Los Angeles, CA 90024, telephone 310-441-9399, web
SAFETY AND SECURITY: Public demonstrations, marches and
labor strikes are widely used as means of political expression
in Bangladesh. A number of general strikes, or "hartals,"
have been called by the political opposition over the past several
years, resulting in the virtual shutdown of transportation and
commerce, and sometimes attacks on individuals who do not observe
the "hartals." Clashes between rival political groups
have resulted in deaths and injuries. Violence is a particular
problem on university campuses. Sometime before October 2001,
Bangladesh will hold general elections. In the run-up to those
elections, Bangladesh may experience increased political violence.
For example, on January 20, 2001, two bombs exploded at a political
rally and resulted in the deaths of six persons. Although political
violence generally is not directed at foreigners, it could affect
those who happen to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. Visitors
should avoid political events such as demonstrations or rallies.
Due to several recent kidnappings, including those of foreign
nationals, U.S. citizens are advised against travelling to the
Khagrachari, Rangamati and Bandarban Hill Tracts districts (collectively
known as the Chittagong Hill Tracts) unless the travel is absolutely
essential. Individuals who choose to visit these districts are
urged to exercise extreme caution. Visitors to Bangladesh should
check with the Consular Section at the U.S. Embassy in Dhaka for
updated information on planned political activities.
CRIME: Crime is a growing problem, particularly in the
major cities of Dhaka and Chittagong. Weapons are increasingly
used in criminal incidents. Pickpocketing, purse-snatching, and
other forms of street crime occur often, especially in areas frequented
by foreigners. Visitors should avoid walking alone after dark,
carrying large sums of money, or wearing expensive jewelry. Valuables
should be stored in the hotel safety deposit box and should not
be left unattended in hotel rooms. The loss or theft of a U.S.
passport abroad should be reported immediately to local police
and to the U.S. Embassy in Dhaka. U.S. citizens may refer to the
Department of State's pamphlets A
Safe Trip Abroad and Tips
for Travelers to South Asia for ways to promote a more
trouble-free journey. The pamphlets are available by mail from
Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office,
Washington, D.C. 20402, via the Internet at http://www.access.gpo.gov/su_docs,
or via the
Bureau of Consular Affairs home page at http://travel.state.gov.
MEDICAL FACILITIES: Medical facilities in Bangladesh do
not approach U.S. standards, even in tourist areas.
MEDICAL INSURANCE: U.S. medical insurance is not always
valid outside the United States. U.S. Medicare and Medicaid programs
do not provide for payment of medical services outside the United
States. Doctors and hospitals often expect immediate cash payment
for health services. Uninsured travelers who require medical care
overseas may face extreme difficulties.
Check with your own insurance company to confirm whether your
policy applies overseas, including provision for medical evacuation,
and for adequacy of coverage. Serious medical problem requiring
hospitalization and/or medical evacuation to the United States
can cost tens of thousands of dollars. Ascertain whether payment
will be made to the overseas hospital or doctor or whether you
will be reimbursed later for expenses you incur. Some insurance
policies also include coverage for psychiatric treatment and for
disposition of remains in the event of death.
Useful information on medical emergencies abroad, including overseas
insurance programs, is provided in the Department of State's Bureau
of Consular Affairs brochure Medical
Information for Americans Traveling Abroad, available
via the Bureau
of Consular Affairs home page or autofax: 202-647-3000.
OTHER HEALTH INFORMATION: Information on vaccinations
and other health precautions may be obtained from the Centers
for Disease Control and Prevention's hotline for international
travelers at tel.: 1-877-FYI-TRIP (1-877-394-8747); fax: 1-888-CDC-FAXX
(1-888-232-3299), or via CDC's
Internet site at http://www.cdc.gov.
TRAFFIC SAFETY AND ROAD CONDITIONS: While in a foreign
country, U.S. citizens may encounter road conditions that differ
significantly from those in the United States. The information
below concerning Bangladesh is provided for general reference
only, and may not be totally accurate in a particular location
Safety of Public Transportation: poor
Urban Road Conditions/Maintenance: poor
Rural Road Conditions/Maintenance: poor
Availability of Roadside Assistance: poor
The Bangladesh road network is in generally poor condition, in
part due to the difficulty of building and maintaining a transportation
infrastructure across a vast river delta. The streets of Dhaka
are congested, with hundreds of thousands of bicycle rickshaws
competing with three-wheeled taxis, cars and trucks for limited
road space. Because inter-city roads are narrow and in poor condition,
driving at night is especially dangerous. There are no lights
beyond approximately 10 miles out of major cities. For
additional general information about road safety, including links
to foreign government sites, see the Department of State,
Bureau of Consular
Affairs home page at http://travel.state.gov/road_safety.html.
AVIATION SAFETY OVERSIGHT: The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration
(FAA) has assessed the Government of Bangladesh's civil aviation
authority as Category 2--not in compliance with international
aviation safety standards for oversight of Bangladesh's air carrier
operations. While consultations to correct the deficiencies are
ongoing, the Bangladesh air carriers currently flying to the U.S.
will be subject to heightened FAA surveillance. No additional
flights or new service to the U.S. by Bangladesh's air carriers
will be permitted unless they arrange to have the flights conducted
by an air carrier from a country meeting international safety
standards. Because of safety concerns about the operation of Biman
Airlines, the Department of State authorizes its personnel to
use alternative carriers or means of transportation whenever practical
for trips to/from Bangladesh. Americans who are required to travel
by air within Bangladesh may wish to consider using an alternative
airline, if available, or consider alternate means of transportation.
For further information, travelers may contact the Department
of Transportation within the U.S. at 1-800-322-7873, or visit
the FAA's Internet
web site at http://faa.gov/avr/iasa. The U.S. Department of
Defense (DOD) separately assesses some foreign carriers for suitability
as official providers of air services. In addition, DoD does not
permit its personnel to use air carriers from Category 2 countries
for official business except for flights originating from or terminating
in the U.S. Local exceptions may apply. For information
regarding the DOD policy on specific carriers, travelers may contact
DOD at 618-229-4801.
CUSTOMS REGULATIONS: There are restrictions on importing
currency and weapons. Contact the Embassy of Bangladesh in Washington,
DC for specific information regarding customs requirements.
CRIMINAL PENALTIES: While in a foreign country, a U.S.
citizen is subject to the country's laws and regulations, which
sometimes differ significantly from those in the United States
and may not afford the protections available to the individual
under U.S. law. Penalties for breaking the law can be more severe
than in the United States for similar offenses. Persons violating
Bangladesh's laws, even unknowingly, may be expelled, arrested
or imprisoned. Penalties for possession, use, or trafficking in
illegal drugs in Bangladesh are strict. The death penalty or life
imprisonment can be imposed for some drug-related crimes. At a
minimum, convicted offenders can expect jail sentences and heavy
For information on international adoption of children and international
parental child abduction, please refer to our Internet site
at http://travel.state.gov/children's_issues.html or telephone
REGISTRATION/EMBASSY LOCATION: Americans living in or
visiting Bangladesh are encouraged to register at the Consular
Section of the U.S. Embassy in Dhaka and obtain updated information
on travel and security within Bangladesh. The U.S. Embassy is
located at Diplomatic Enclave, Madani Avenue, Baridhara, Dhaka,
telephone (880-2) 882-4700 through 22, fax number (880-2) 882-4449.
For emergency services during business hours, call (880-2) 882-3805.
For emergency services after hours, call (880-2) 882-4700 and
ask for the Duty Officer. The
Embassy's Internet home page is http://www.usembassy-dhaka.org/state/embassy.htm.
Their workweek is Sunday - Thursday.
This replaces the Consular Information Sheet dated November 22,
2000 to update information on Entry Requirements, Safety and Security
and Aviation Safety Oversight.