January 24, 2022

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Burkina Faso Travel Advisory

15 min read

Do not travel to Burkina Faso due to COVID-19, terrorism, crime, and kidnapping.

Read the Department of State’s COVID-19 page before you plan any international travel.   

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a Level 3 Travel Health Notice for Burkina Faso due to COVID-19.  

Burkina Faso has lifted stay at home orders, and resumed some transportation options and business operations. Visit the Embassy’s COVID-19 page for more information on COVID-19 in Burkina Faso.

Terrorist groups continue plotting attacks in Burkina Faso. Terrorists may conduct attacks anywhere with little or no warning. Targets could include hotels, restaurants, police stations, customs offices, areas at or near mining sites, places of worship, military posts, and schools.

Kidnapping and hostage taking is a threat throughout the country.  On May 10, 2019 a hostage rescue operation freed four international hostages that had been kidnapped in Burkina Faso and in neighboring Benin.  

The Government of Burkina Faso has maintained a state of emergency in the entire East and Sahel regions, the provinces of Kossi and Sourou in the Boucle de Mouhoun region, the province of Kenedougou in the Hauts Bassins region, the province of Loroum in the North region, and the province of Koulpelogo in the Center-East region.

The U.S. government is unable to provide emergency services to U.S. citizens throughout most of the country, as U.S. government personnel are restricted from travelling to regions outside the capitol due to security concerns. The U.S. Embassy prohibits U.S. government personnel from personal travel to the Karpala, Balkiui and Rayongo (also known as Dayongo) neighborhoods of Ouagadougou’s Arrondissement 11 due to the potential for security operations.

Family members under the age of 21 cannot accompany U.S. government employees who work in Burkina Faso.

Read the country information page.

If you decide to travel to Burkina Faso:

  • See the U.S. Embassy’s web page regarding COVID-19.   
  • Visit the CDC’s webpage on Travel and COVID-19.  
  • Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas.
  • Have evacuation plans that do not rely on U.S. government assistance.
  • Take steps to mitigate the risk of becoming a victim of violence, including limiting trips to locations frequented by Westerners.
  • Do not physically resist any robbery attempt.
  • Review your personal security plans.
  • Remain aware of your surroundings and local events.
  • Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive Alerts and make it easier to locate you in an emergency.
  • Follow the Department of State on Facebook and Twitter.
  • Review the Crime and Safety Report for Burkina Faso.
  • U.S. citizens who travel abroad should always have a contingency plan for emergency situations.  Review the Traveler’s Checklist.

Last Update: Reissued with updates to COVID-19 information.

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