Fire and rescue services
Exercise a high degree of caution in Bosnia and Herzegovina due to the risk of landmines.
Exercise a high degree of caution in Bosnia and Herzegovina due to the risk of landmines.
Full travel advice: Safety
Full travel advice: Health
Full travel advice: Local laws
Full travel advice: Travel
Full travel advice: Local contacts
While there have been no recent terrorist attacks in Bosnia and Herzegovina, they can still happen.
Terrorists have staged attacks in European cities in recent years. Targets include:
Security services have stopped some planned attacks. Take official warnings seriously.
To protect yourself from terrorism:
The crime rate in Bosnia and Herzegovina is moderate. Home and vehicle break-ins are common, particularly in Sarajevo. Pickpocketing and bag snatching is common. Take extra care in crowded tourist areas and on public transport.
Firearms are widely available. Travellers may not be targets, but you risk being in the wrong place at the wrong time, especially late at night.
To protect yourself from crime:
You may be at risk of cyber-based threats during overseas travel to any country. Digital identity theft is a growing concern. Your devices and personal data can be compromised, especially if you’re connecting to Wi-Fi, using or connecting to shared or public computers, or to Bluetooth.
Social media can also be risky in destinations where there are social or political tensions, or laws that may seem unreasonable by Australian standards. Travellers have been arrested for things they have said on social media. Don't comment on local or political events on your social media.
Unexploded and unmarked landmines remain dangerous, particularly in the countryside and isolated mountainous areas.
To protect yourself:
Public protests and events that draw large groups of people can turn violent.
Ethnic and religious tensions may result in demonstrations or conflict.
Events can happen with little or no warning and may target foreigners.
To stay safe during periods of unrest:
Fires can happen during summer but are usually limited to uninhabited areas.
To protect yourself if there's a natural disaster:
If you can, access the Global Disaster Alert and Coordination System.
Get comprehensive travel insurance before you leave.
Your policy needs to cover all overseas medical costs, including medical evacuation. The Australian Government won't pay for these costs.
If you can't afford travel insurance, you can't afford to travel. This applies to everyone, no matter how healthy and fit you are.
If you're not insured, you may have to pay many thousands of dollars up-front for medical care.
Consider your physical and mental health before you travel, especially if you have an existing medical condition.
See your doctor or travel clinic to:
Do this at least 8 weeks before you leave.
If you have immediate concerns for your welfare or the welfare of another Australian, call the 24-hour Consular Emergency Centre on +61 2 6261 3305 or contact your nearest Australian Embassy, High Commission or Consulate to discuss counselling hotlines and services available in your location.
Not all medication available over the counter or by prescription in Australia is available in other countries. Some may even be considered illegal or a controlled substance, even if prescribed by an Australian doctor.
If you plan to bring medication, check if it's legal in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Take enough legal medication for your trip.
Carry a copy of your prescription or a letter from your doctor stating:
Tick-borne encephalitis is a risk in forested and rural areas.
They're active from spring to autumn.
To reduce your risk of tick-borne disease:
West Nile virus (WNV) cases have been reported in Bosnia and Herzegovina. There's no vaccine to prevent it.
To protect yourself from illness:
Measles cases can routinely occur. Bosnia and Herzegovina has experienced significant outbreaks in the past. Make sure your vaccinations are up-to-date before you travel.
Other health risks
Outbreaks of foodborne and other infectious diseases sometimes occur. These include:
To reduce your risk of illness:
If you're bitten or scratched by an animal, seek medical help straight away.
Get medical advice if you develop symptoms.
Medical facilities in Bosnia and Herzegovina aren't up to Australian standards, especially outside of major cities.
If you're seriously ill or injured, you'll need to be evacuated to a place with better facilities. Medical evacuation can be very expensive.
You're subject to all local laws and penalties, including those that appear harsh by Australian standards. Research local laws before travelling.
If you're arrested or jailed, the Australian Government will do what it can to help you under our Consular Services Charter. But we can't get you out of trouble or out of jail.
Don't use or carry illegal drugs. Penalties for drug offences are severe. Possessing even small amounts of illegal drugs can lead to prison sentences. This includes marijuana.
You must carry your ID at all times.
It's illegal to photograph military and police:
Some Australian criminal laws still apply when you're overseas. If you break these laws, you may face prosecution in Australia.
Bosnia and Herzegovina recognises dual nationality only in certain circumstances.
If you're a dual citizen, this limits the consular services we can give if you're arrested or detained.
Always travel on your Australian passport.
Contact the nearest embassy or consulate of Bosnia and Herzegovina for advice on:
Same-sex relationships are legal but aren't widely tolerated. Avoid public displays of affection with someone of the same sex.
Every country or territory decides who can enter or leave through its borders. For specific information about the evidence you'll need to enter a foreign destination, check with the nearest embassy, consulate or immigration department of the destination you're entering.
Make sure you meet all entry and exit conditions. If you don't, the Australian Government can't help you.
Visa-free travel for short stays
You don't need a visa for stays of up to 90 days.
You'll need a temporary residence permit if you plan to stay longer than 90 days.
Entry and exit conditions can change at short notice. Contact the nearest embassy or consulate of Bosnia and Herzegovina for details about visas, currency, customs and other travel requirements.
Ensure your passport is stamped when you enter the country. If it isn't stamped, you could face difficulties leaving.
For a stay of 3 days or more, you must register with the local police within 48 hours of arrival. Hotels can organise this for you and will confirm when you check in.
Children aged younger than 18 years old travelling alone or with one parent may need to produce the following:
Check with an embassy or consulate of Bosnia and Herzegovina before you travel.
More information (not all links are available in English):
Some countries won't let you enter unless your passport is valid for 6 months after you plan to leave that country. This can apply even if you're just transiting or stopping over.
Some foreign governments and airlines apply the rule inconsistently. Travellers can receive conflicting advice from different sources.
You can end up stranded if your passport is not valid for more than 6 months.
The Australian Government does not set these rules. Check your passport's expiry date before you travel. If you're not sure it'll be valid for long enough, consider getting a new passport.
Lost or stolen passport
Your passport is a valuable document. It's attractive to people who may try to use your identity to commit crimes.
Some people may try to trick you into giving them your passport. Always keep it in a safe place.
If your passport is lost or stolen, tell the Australian Government as soon as possible:
Although Australian passports comply with international standards for sex and gender, we can't guarantee that a passport showing 'X' in the sex field will be accepted for entry or transit by another country. Contact the nearest embassy, high commission or consulate of your destination before you arrive at the border to confirm if authorities will accept passports with 'X' gender markers.
The currency of Bosnia and Herzegovina is the Bosnian Mark (KM or BAM).
You'll find ATMs in major centres.
While credit and debit card use is increasing, you'll still need cash outside Sarajevo.
Some banks will cash traveller's cheques for KM, but many won't accept them.
In recent years, asylum-seeker movements have put significant pressure on border controls in Europe.
To avoid delays at local borders, you should:
To drive a vehicle, you'll need both:
Driving without an IDP could void your travel and vehicle insurance.
The minimum age for driving is 18 years old.
The road traffic death rate in Bosnia and Herzegovina is significantly higher than in Australia.
Driving can be dangerous due to:
Black ice, fog and landslides can make roads hazardous in winter and spring.
Avoid driving off-road in rural areas in case of landmines.
You need the correct insurance cover to enter Bosnia and Herzegovina in a vehicle. If you don't, border police will direct you to an insurer at the border crossing to buy insurance.
If travelling by car, research and prepare before entry.
Not all border crossings have an insurer's office, and credit card payments aren't always possible.
Local traffic laws
You must always have your headlights on (even during the day).
From 15 November to 15 April, you must use winter tyres or tyres with snow chains.
The blood alcohol limit is 0.03%. For drivers younger than 21 or with less than 3 years of driving experience, the limit is 0%.
Police can collect traffic fines on the spot.
Speed limits for driving are:
They're not always signposted on rural roads.
Check with your travel insurer if your policy covers you for riding a motorbike, quad bike or similar vehicle.
Always wear a helmet.
Taxis are available in most towns and for inter-city travel.
Use only registered taxis with licence plates beginning with 'TA'.
Ensure the meter is running throughout your trip. Pay particular attention at the airport.
Public transport is usually reliable but can be crowded, and standards vary. Be wary of pickpockets.
DFAT doesn't provide information on the safety of individual commercial airlines or flight paths.
Check Bosnia and Herzegovina's air safety profile with the Aviation Safety Network.
Depending on what you need, contact your:
For non-emergency criminal issues, contact the local police.
Always get a police report when reporting a crime.
Your insurer should have a 24-hour emergency number.
Read the Consular Services Charter for what the Australian Government can and can't do to help you overseas.
For consular assistance contact:
Australian Consulate, Sarajevo
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Tel: +387 33 209 202
Fax: +387 33 214 634
Check the Embassy website for details about opening hours and any temporary closures.
In a consular emergency, if you can't contact an embassy, call the 24-hour Consular Emergency Centre on:
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