Barbados - Consular Information Sheet
September 14, 1999
COUNTRY DESCRIPTION: Barbados has a moderately developed
economy. Facilities for tourism are widely available. The capital
is Bridgetown. The U.S. Embassy in Barbados also has responsibility
for U.S. citizens in the independent countries of Antigua and
Barbuda, Dominica, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent
and The Grenadines, as well as the British dependent territories
of Anguilla, British Virgin Islands and Montserrat, and several
French islands (Martinique, Guadeloupe, and their dependencies).
ENTRY REQUIREMENTS: U.S. citizens may enter Barbados
for up to 28 days without a valid passport, but must carry original
documentation proving U.S. citizenship (i.e. valid or expired
U.S. passport, certified U.S. birth certificate, or Consular Report
of Birth, or Certificate of Naturalization, or Certificate of
Citizenship), and a photo identification and an onward or return
ticket. U.S. citizen visitors who enter Barbados without these
items, even if admitted by immigration authorities, may encounter
difficulties in boarding flights for return to the United States.
For further information, travelers may contact the Embassy of
Barbados, 2144 Wyoming Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20008, telephone
(202) 939-9200, Internet e-mail: email@example.com; or the consulates
of Barbados in Los Angeles, Miami or New York.
CUSTOMS REGULATIONS: Barbados customs authorities may
enforce strict regulations concerning temporary import and export
of items such as firearms and agricultural products. It is advisable
to contact the Embassy of Barbados in Washington, D.C. or one
of Barbados’ consulates in the United States for specific information
regarding customs requirements.
CRIME INFORMATION: Crime in Bridgetown is characterized
by petty theft and street crime, but the incidence of violent
crime appears to be on the rise. Valuables left in plain sight
inside vehicles make tempting targets for criminals. Automobile
theft also occurs with some frequency.
The loss or theft abroad of a U.S. passport should be reported
immediately to the local police and the nearest U.S. embassy or
consulate. U.S. citizens can refer to the Department of State's
pamphlet A Safe Trip Abroad
for ways to promote a more trouble-free journey. This publication
and others, such as Tips for
Travelers to the Caribbean, are available by mail from
the 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.
CRIMINAL PENALTIES: While in a foreign country, a U.S.
citizen is subject to that 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
Barbados laws, even unknowingly, may be expelled, arrested or
imprisoned. Penalties for possession, use, or trafficking in illegal
drugs in Barbados are strict, and convicted offenders can expect
jail sentences and heavy fines.
MEDICAL FACILITIES: Medical care is generally good. Serious
medical problems requiring hospitalization and/or medical evacuation
to the United States can cost thousands of dollars or more. Doctors
and hospitals often expect immediate cash payment for health services,
and U.S. medical insurance is not always valid outside the United
States. U.S. Medicare and Medicaid programs do not provide payment
for medical services outside the United States.
MEDICAL INSURANCE: Uninsured travelers who require medical
care overseas may face extreme difficulties. Please check with
your own insurance company to confirm whether your policy applies
overseas, including provision for medical evacuation. Please ascertain
whether payment will be made to the overseas hospital or doctor
or whether you will be reimbursed later for expenses. 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
Information for Americans Traveling Abroad, available
via the Bureau of Consular Affairs home page or autofax: (202)
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 1-877-FYI-TRIP (1-877-394-8747); fax 1-888-CDC-FAXX
(1-888-232-3299), or via their 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 Barbados is provided for general reference only,
and may not be totally accurate in a particular location or circumstance.
Driving in Barbados is on the left-hand side of the road.
Safety of Public Transportation: Good
Urban Road Conditions/Maintenance: Fair
Rural Road Conditions/Maintenance: Fair
Availability of Roadside Assistance: Fair
Taxis and buses are generally safe. Buses and vans are often
crowded and tend to travel at high rates of speed. Night driving
should be done with much caution because of narrow roads with
no shoulders and because of pedestrian/bicycle traffic.
For specific information concerning Barbados driver's permits,
vehicle inspection, road tax and mandatory insurance, please contact
the Barbados National Tourist Organization offices in New York
at 1 (800) 221-9831 or via the Internet at e-mail address: firstname.lastname@example.org.
AVIATION SAFETY OVERSIGHT: As there is no direct commercial
service at present between the United States and Barbados, nor
economic authority to operate such service, the U.S. Federal Aviation
Administration (FAA) has not assessed Barbados’ Civil Aviation
Authority for compliance with international aviation safety standards
for oversight of Barbados air carrier operations.
For further information, travelers may contact the Department
of Transportation within the U.S. at 1-800-322-7873, or visit
the FAA Internet website at http://www.faa.gov/avr/iasa/.
The U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) separately assesses some
foreign air carriers for suitability as official providers of
air services. For information regarding the DOD policy on specific
carriers, travelers may contact DOD at 618-229-4801.
CHILDREN’S ISSUES: For information on international adoption
of children, international parental child abduction, and international
child support enforcement issues, please refer to our Internet
site at http://travel.state.gov/children's_issues.html
or telephone (202) 736-7000.
REGISTRATION/EMBASSY AND CONSULATE LOCATIONS: U.S. citizens
living in or visiting Barbados are encouraged to register at the
Consular Section of the U.S. Embassy in Barbados and obtain updated
information on travel and security within Barbados. The U.S. Embassy
is located in Bridgetown at the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce
(CIBC) Building on Broad Street, telephone (246) 436-4950. The
Consular Section is located in the American Life Insurance Company
(ALICO) Building, Cheapside, telephone (246) 431-0225 or fax (246)
431-0179. The hours of operation are 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Monday-Friday,
except local and U.S. holidays. There are separate Consular Information
Sheets for Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica, Grenada, St. Kitts and
Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and The Grenadines, British West
Indies (including Anguilla, British Virgin Islands and Montserrat),
and French West Indies (including Guadeloupe, Martinique and French
St. Martin). U.S. citizens may call the Consular Section to obtain
updated information on travel and security in these areas.
This replaces the Consular Information Sheet dated June 24, 1999.