Foreign travel advice

Dominican Republic

Summary

Hurricane Irma passed the north coast of the Dominican Republic on 8 September 2017 and Hurricane Maria on 21 September. There was some local flooding and damage to buildings in the north and east. However there are no reports of serious damage to hotels or tourist infrastructure.

You should continue to follow the advice of the local authorities, including any evacuation orders. Some disruption to flights is expected following Hurricane Maria - you should contact your tour operator or airline for more information. The Dominican Republic Disaster Management Agency (COE) will continue to publish updates on social media (in Spanish).

The British Embassy Santo Domingo will post information in English on its Twitter and Facebook accounts.

The hurricane season usually runs from June to November and it is highly likely that further storms will affect the Caribbean. The impact of these could be particularly severe in light of the damage already caused by Hurricane Irma. You are advised to monitor updates from the US National Hurricane Centre and follow the advice of local authorities in the case of any further storms. See Natural Disasters

For information and advice about the risks associated with Zika virus, visit the National Travel Health Network and Centre website.

Cases of chikungunya virus and dengue fever have been confirmed in the Dominican Republic. You should take steps to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes. See Health

165,000 British nationals visited the Dominican Republic in 2016. Most visits are trouble-free, but there are incidents of crime and violence. See Crime

Take extra care if you’re travelling between Haiti and the Dominican Republic by road. There have been armed robberies in the Dominican Republic on roads close to the border with Haiti. See Road travel

Don’t become involved with illegal drugs of any kind. There are severe penalties for all drug offences. A number of British nationals are serving prison sentences for attempting to traffic drugs. See Local laws and customs.

Credit card cloning and fraud are common. It’s generally safer to use cash. See Money

Although there’s no recent history of terrorism in the Dominican Republic, attacks can’t be ruled out. See Terrorism

If you’re abroad and you need emergency help from the UK government, contact the nearest British embassy, consulate or high commission.

The number for the English speaking tourist police (CESTUR) is +1-809-200-3500. In Santo Domingo, Santiago and the north coast (including Puerto Plata) the number for all emergency services is 911. In Punta Cana-Bavaro, the number for emergency fire and ambulance services is +1-809-455-1551 and in Samana, the number for emergency fire and ambulance services is +1-809-538-3763.

The Overseas Business Risk service offers information and advice for British companies operating overseas on how to manage political, economic, and business security-related risks.

Take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance before you travel.