State Dept Travel Advisory - Level 3

State Department Travel Advisories Updated for the Republic of Turkey

Americans visiting Turkey should be vaccinated for measles, mumps, diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, varicella, polio, and influenza

Turkish airline wing with logo on it

The U.S. State Department updated Level 3 and Level 4 Travel Advisories on January 16, 2019, regarding Americans visiting the Republic of Turkey. 

The Level 3 ‘Reconsider Travel’ Advisory says ‘there are increased risks and arbitrary detentions taking place in Turkey, which may impact American visitors. 

The U.S. State Department also issued a Level 4 Travel Advisory, ‘Do Not Travel’ for areas near Turkey’s Syria and Iraq borders. 

Previously, the U.S. Consulate General in Istanbul, Turkey, issued an alert on January 15, 2019, regarding potential demonstrations.   

This alert said Turkish security forces have detained tens of thousands of individuals, including U.S. citizens, based on scant evidence and grounds that appear to be political said the US State Department. 

Moreover, U.S. citizens have also been subject to travel bans that prevent them from departing Turkey. 

The U.S. government has very limited ability to provide emergency services to U.S. citizens traveling in Batman, Bingol, Bitlis, Diyarbakir, Gaziantep, Hakkari, Hatay, Kilis, Mardin, Sanliurfa, Siirt, Sirnak, Tunceli, and Van, as the U.S. government restricts its employees from traveling to specific provinces in these regions, without prior approval. 

If you decide to travel to Turkey:

  • Stay alert in locations frequented by Westerners.
  • Avoid demonstrations and crowds.
  • Stay at hotels with identifiable security measures.
  • Monitor local media and adjust your plans based on new information.
  • Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive Alerts and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
  • U.S. citizens who travel abroad should always have a contingency plan for emergency situations, such as this Traveler’s Checklist.

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Additionally, years of conflict in the Syrian Arab Republic have led over 3.5 million people to migrate to Turkey, says the World Health Organization.   

This large influx of refugees has posed serious challenges to the Turkey national health care system, resulting in overstretched capacities at all levels. 

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says to ensure you are up-to-date on several Routine Vaccines before visiting the Republic of Turkey. 

Additionally, the CDC suggests these travel vaccinations to many when visiting Turkey:

  • Hepatitis A
  • Hepatitis B
  • Rabies
  • Typhoid

These vaccines and related medications can be found at most travel vaccination pharmacies in the USA.

Pre-trip, vaccination counseling appointments can be scheduled at Vax-Before-Travel.