Foreign travel advice

Burundi

Important COVID-19 Exceptional Travel Advisory Notice

The Foreign & Commonwealth Office currently advises British nationals against all but essential international travel. This advice is being kept under constant review.

Summary

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Coronavirus (COVID-19): stay up to date

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) is advising British nationals against all non-essential international travel at this time.

Existing advice for Burundi remains in place:

The FCO advise against all travel to:

  • Cibitoke and Bubanza provinces
  • areas of Bujumbura Rural province west of the Rusizi river towards the Democratic Republic of Congo border, with the exception of the Rusizi Delta Nature Reserve
  • the road north of Bujumbura airport towards Cibitoke
  • the main road running west from Kayanza through the Kibira National Park
  • Ruvubu National Park

The FCO advise against all but essential travel to:

  • the rest of Burundi

The FCO’s advice against all but essential travel to Bujumbura does not include airside transit through Bujumbura International Airport.

Elections took place in Burundi on 20 May. You should avoid all large gatherings and remain vigilant at all times.

In August 2015, there were a number of violent incidents reported across the country, including a number of targeted political and military assassinations. You should limit your movements, avoid large gatherings and remain vigilant at all times.

In Bujumbura you should avoid areas which have previously experienced violence. In particular Kanyosha, Musaga, Mutakura, Kamenge, Cibitoke, Bwiza, Ngagara, Nyakabiga.

Avoid travelling by road outside Bujumbura after dark. This is due to the security situation and road safety concerns.

The security situation near the border with the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Rwanda remains unstable, and there have been armed attacks. If you are travelling near the border with the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) or Rwanda, you should be aware of the risk of attacks. You should exercise caution and keep up to date with developments on the current situation, including via local media and this travel advice. See Local travel

There are limited facilities up country with little French spoken, and limited infrastructure. Make sure you’re as well prepared and self-sufficient as possible. See Road travel

Consular support is not available from the British government in Burundi. However, the British High Commission in Kigali, Rwanda can provide consular support to British nationals. The Belgian Embassy in Burundi is also able to provide consular assistance to British nationals. All visitors or long term residents should register with the Belgian Embassy. See Consular assistance

There’s a high risk of street crime. There have been incidents of armed burglary, sometimes targeting foreign exchange offices and banks. See Crime

Terrorist attacks in Burundi can’t be ruled out. Al Shabaab has made public threats against Burundi because of its support to the African Union peacekeeping mission in Somalia. See Terrorism.

Since 2015, there have been sporadic grenade and arson attacks on local government infrastructure. There were a number of deadly grenade attacks in Bujumbura’s Buyenzi and Bwiza districts targeting bars in July 2017. None of these attacks target foreigners.

A long running cholera epidemic in Burundi (including Bujumbura) has caused several fatalities since 2013. You should take necessary precautions and seek urgent medical attention if you become unwell. See Health

Take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance before you travel.