Fire and rescue services
We haven't changed our level of advice:
Exercise normal safety precautions in Lithuania.
Take care on public transport and at bars and restaurants, where pickpocketing and bag snatching can happen. Drink spiking is a problem. Don't accept food or drink from strangers. Be careful on trains where scammers may befriend you before robbing you. Keep your car locked, even when driving.
Be aware of terrorism. Terrorists have attacked a number of European cities.
Winters are cold. Wind, snow and ice-related accidents cause death and injury. Take care when walking in snow or sleet. Use winter tyres or chains when driving.
Full travel advice: Safety
Watch out for ticks in forests. Ticks are common from spring to autumn.
Swine flu is a risk. Get the annual seasonal flu shot.
Standards are good at private medical facilities but lower at public facilities. Doctors may need up-front payment before treating you.
Full travel advice: Health
Penalties for drug offences are severe. Don't use or carry illegal drugs.
The blood alcohol limit is 0.04%. Penalties include heavy fines and imprisonment. Don't drink and drive.
Lithuania recognises dual nationals in some situations. If you're a dual national, we can only give limited consular help if you're arrested or detained.
Full travel advice: Local laws
Lithuania is part of the Schengen area. You can enter Lithuania without a tourist visa in some cases. In other situations, you'll need to get a visa.
Rules apply to children who live in Lithuania travelling alone or with an unrelated adult. You must provide a consent letter from at least one of the parents.
If you're a non-EU citizen, you must have travel insurance. If you do not already have insurance, you may be directed to buy it at the border.
Border crossings may be delayed or temporarily blocked. Always carry your passport when crossing borders, even within the Schengen area. Check local media and transport providers for information on any border disruptions.
Driving is dangerous, particularly in winter. Keep your headlights on. Use winter tyres from 10 November to 1 April.
Full travel advice: Travel
The Consular Services Charter details what the Australian Government can and can't do to help you overseas.
The Australian Consulate in Vilnius provides some consular help but doesn't issue passports or perform notarial work. For full consular help, contact the Australian Embassy in Warsaw.
Full travel advice: Local contacts
Violent crime is rare.
Drink spiking has been reported. Travellers have reported being drugged and robbed. Don't accept food or drink from strangers.
It's common for thieves to steal cars or items from vehicles. This is most likely when cars are new or expensive.
Pickpocketing and bag snatching are common. Most petty theft occurs on public transport and in bars and restaurants.
To protect yourself from crime:
avoid walking alone at night
keep car doors locked, windows up and valuables out of sight
use guarded car parks where possible
Scammers target travellers on trains. They befriend travellers and ask personal questions to work out if they're worth robbing.
If you have concerns about your safety while on public transport, ask a transport employee for help.
File a police report at the nearest police station if you're a victim of crime. Get a copy of the report.
The Lithuanian police can provide translators. See Local contacts
Public protests and events that draw large groups of people are rare but can turn violent.
To protect yourself during periods of unrest:
avoid crowds, protests and demonstrations where possible
monitor developments on the media
follow advice from local authorities
While there have been no recent terrorist attacks in Lithuania, they can still happen.
Terrorists have attacked some European cities. Terrorism is a threat worldwide.
Lithuania can experience severe weather, including extremely low winter temperatures.
Wind, snow and ice-related accidents occur, causing death or injury. These include:
snow falling from roofs
prolonged exposure to extreme cold
Take care when walking in snow, sleet or wind.
Be careful when driving. Use winter tyres or chains.
Watch the media and other local news sources for weather advice and be prepared.
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 your a non-EU citizen, you must have travel insurance. If you do not already have insurance, you may have to buy it at the border.
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.
what activities and care your policy covers
that your insurance covers you for the whole time you'll be away
Consider your physical and mental health before you travel, especially if you have an existing medical condition.
See your doctor or travel clinic to:
have a basic health check-up
ask if your travel plans may affect your health
plan any vaccinations you need
Do this at least eight weeks before you leave.
If you need counselling services, contact the Australian Consular Emergency Centre on +61 2 6261 3305. Ask to speak to a Lifeline phone counsellor.
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 Lithuania. Take enough legal medication for your trip.
Carry a copy of your prescription and a dated letter from your doctor stating:
what the medication is
how much you'll take
that it's for personal use
Tick-borne diseases are a risk in forested areas. Ticks are common from spring to autumn and care should be taken when undertaking any outdoor activity, when camping and when in forest or farming areas. Lithuanian Ministry of Health states ticks can lead to tick-borne Encephalitis or Lyme Borreliosis.
Get the annual seasonal flu shot to minimise your risk of swine flu or influenza A(H1N1) (World Health Organization).
Lithuania is currently experiencing an outbreak of measles. Make sure your vaccinations are up-to-date before you travel.
Medical professionals are highly trained and some speak English.
Private medical facilities are well-equipped. However, public facilities don't meet Australian standards.
Doctors and hospitals require up-front payment before treating you.
In an emergency, you may need to be evacuated. Medical evacuation can be very expensive.
You're subject to all local laws and penalties, including those that may 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.
Penalties for drug offences, even when you only have small amounts, include heavy fines and imprisonment.
The blood alcohol limit is 0.04%. Severe penalties for drink-driving include:
losing your driver's licence
Some Australian criminal laws still apply when you're overseas. If you break these laws, you may face prosecution in Australia.
Lithuania recognises dual nationality only in some situations.
If you're a dual nationality, this limits the consular services we can give if you're arrested or detained.
Always travel on your Australian passport.
If in doubt, contact the nearest Lithuanian Embassy or Consulate to check your dual nationality status.
Every country or territory decides who can enter or exit through its borders.
Make sure you meet all entry and exit conditions. If you don't, the Australian Government can't help you.
Lithuania is part of the Schengen area, which allows you to enter without a visa in some cases.
Entry and exit conditions can change at short notice. Contact the nearest Lithuanian embassy or consulate for details about visas, currency, customs and quarantine rules.
You will require a Russian visa for entry via the Curonian Spit and travellers should be aware of visa requirements when entering or departing through Belarus. Visa requirements for Belarus differ depending whether travel is by air or road.
You must provide a consent letter from at least one of the parents if a child:
is travelling alone or with an unrelated adult
lives in Lithuania
The letter must be notarised by a Lithuanian or Australian notary or the closest Lithuanian diplomatic office.
Any adult accompanying the child must have their details in the letter, including their:
dates of birth
personal ID numbers (if relevant)
passport numbers and ID cards (if relevant), including the issuing authority, issue date and expiry date
If you're a non-EU citizen visiting Lithuania, you must show proof of valid travel insurance.
If you arrive without travel insurance, you may have to buy it at the border.
The export of religious materials and antiques are subject to strict controls. Ask local authorities to confirm if you can export items.
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 six 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.
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:
Lithuania's official currency is the Euro.
Declare amounts over 10,000 euros or equivalent if you're travelling between Lithuania and any non-European Union (EU) country. This covers all forms of currency, not only cash.
If you fail to declare or you give incorrect information on entry or exit, authorities will fine you.
You should check with local authorities in the countries you are leaving, entering or passing through whether you must declare higher amounts of currency.
You need a Russian visa if you plan to visit the southern portion of Curonian Spit. The Spit is divided between Lithuania and the Russian Federation at the Nida border crossing.
Travel by road via the Curonian Spit will require a visa. Travel by road through Belarus will also require a visa. Rules regarding visa requirements differ when flying directly into and out of Minsk. Read the travel advice for Belarus.
Localised disruptions to some cross-border road and rail transport services can happen.
If you're travelling by road or train, allow extra time to cover disruptions. Border crossings may be delayed or not possible.
Always carry your passport when crossing borders, even within the Schengen area.
Monitor the local media and ask transport providers for advice on border conditions.
To drive in Lithuania, you need both:
a valid Australian driver's licence
an International Driving Permit (IDP)
Permanent residents of Lithuania need to apply for a local licence. Refer to the The State Enterprise Regitra.
Lithuania has one of the highest road death rates in the EU. You're two times more likely to die in a motor vehicle accident in Lithuania as in Australia.
Hazards on country roads include:
bicycles and cars without tail-lights or reflectors
Driving in winter can be dangerous due to snow and icy conditions. Black ice on roads is a common hazard.
Snow clearing is efficient in cities. However, highways and roads in rural areas can be blocked for long periods.
By law, you must:
use winter tyres from 10 November to 1 April
always use headlights on low beam when driving
have valid car insurance
Contact your car hire provider for updates on car rental requirements, including the minimum age.
Lithuania has strict guidelines for motorbike use, including wearing helmets and reflective clothing.
Always wear a helmet.
Use reputable taxi companies that use meters.
Private taxis may refuse to use meters and may overcharge you.
Look for the company logo before getting in. You decide whether or not to pay a tip.
In Vilnius, Kaunas and Klaipeda, you can book a rideshare service.
In winter, heavy snow can disrupt train travel.
Towns have limited public transport.
Larger cities have regular and frequent bus services.
Have the right ticket to avoid fines.
DFAT doesn't provide information on the safety of individual commercial airlines or flight paths.
Check Lithuania's air safety profile with the Aviation Safety Network.
Depending on what you need, contact your:
family and friends
Always get a police report when you report a crime.
Your insurer should have a 24-hour emergency number.
Contact your provider with any complaints about tourist services or products.
Read the Consular Services Charter for what the Australian Government can and can't do to help you overseas.
Australia has an Honorary Consul in Vilnius, Lithuania. The office provides some consular assistance but can't issue passports or perform notarial acts.
Vilniaus St 23
LT-01402, Vilnius, Lithuania
Phone: (+370) 5 212 3369
For full consular assistance, contact the Australian Embassy in Poland.
3rd Floor, Nautilus Building
ul. Nowogrodzka 11
00-513 Warsaw, Poland
Phone: +4822 521 3444
Fax: +4822 627 3500
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:
+61 2 6261 3305 from overseas
1300 555 135 in Australia
Be the first to know official government advice when travelling.