- General Info
- Health Risks
- Insect Threats
- Water Quality
- Security Concerns
- Weather Notes
- Electrical Standards
- Visa Info
- Time Zone
Algeria is a land of contrasts, with over 700 miles of coastline, miles and miles of desert, forests, mountains and oasis. Here you'll find ancient Roman, Christian and Punic ruins preserved by the dry desert climate, and the port city of Algiers with its wonderful Turkish architecture and tiny twisting alleys, and mosques, fortresses and palaces dating to the 12th century.Language: Arabic (official), French, Berber dialects
Major International Airport:
|Algiers||Algiers-Houari Boumedienne||ALG||12 miles NW|
Food and waterborne diseases are the number one cause of illness in travelers. Travelers diarrhea can be caused by viruses, bacteria, or parasites, which are found throughout the region and can contaminate food or water. Infections may cause diarrhea and vomiting (E. coli, Salmonella, cholera, and parasites), fever (Typhoid fever and toxoplasmosis), or liver damage (hepatitis). Make sure your food and drinking water are safe.
Malaria is always a serious disease and may be a deadly illness. A limited risk of malaria exists in parts of Algeria, Egypt, and Morocco. Taking an antimalarial drug is not recommended as the risk for travelers is considered to be extremely low. However, travelers should use insect repellent to prevent mosquito bites .
Dengue, filariasis, leishmaniasis, and onchocerciasis are diseases carried by insects that also occur in this region. Protecting yourself against insect bites will help to prevent these diseases.
Schistosomiasis, a parasitic infection, is found in fresh water in the region, including the Nile River. Do not swim in fresh water (except in well-chlorinated swimming pools) in these countries.
Because motor vehicle crashes are a leading cause of injury among travelers, walk and drive defensively. Avoid nighttime travel if possible and always use seat belts.
There is no risk for yellow fever in North Africa. A certificate of yellow fever vaccination may be required for entry into certain of these countries if you are coming from countries in South America or sub-Saharan Africa. For detailed information, see Comprehensive Yellow Fever Vaccination Requirements. Also, find the nearest authorized U.S. yellow fever vaccine center.
CDC recommends the following vaccines (as appropriate for age):
See your doctor at least 46 weeks before your trip to allow time for shots to take effect.
- Hepatitis A or immune globulin (IG).
- Hepatitis B if you might be exposed to blood (for example, health-care workers), have sexual contact with the local population, stay longer than 6 months in the region, or be exposed through medical treatment.
- rabies, if you might be exposed to wild or domestic animals through your work or recreation.
- Typhoid, particularly if you are visiting developing countries in this region.
- As needed, booster doses for tetanus-diphtheria, measles, and a one-time dose of polio vaccine for adults. Hepatitis B vaccine is now recommended for all infants and for children ages 1112 years who did not complete the series as infants.
- Wash hands often with soap and water.
- Drink only bottled or boiled water, or carbonated (bubbly) drinks in cans or bottles. Avoid tap water, fountain drinks, and ice cubes. If this is not possible, make water safer by BOTH filtering through an absolute 1-micron or less filter AND adding iodine tablets to the filtered water. Absolute 1-micron filters are found in camping/outdoor supply stores.
- Protect yourself from mosquito bites:
- Pay special attention to mosquito protection between dusk and dawn. This is when the type of mosquito whose bite transmits malaria is active.
- Wear long-sleeved shirts, long pants, and hats.
- Use insect repellents that contain DEET (diethylmethyltoluamide).
- Read and follow the directions and precautions on the product label.
- Apply insect repellent to exposed skin.
- Do not put repellent on wounds or broken skin.
- Do not breathe in, swallow, or get into the eyes (DEET is toxic if swallowed). If using a spray product, apply DEET to your face by spraying your hands and rubbing the product carefully over the face, avoiding eyes and mouth.
- Unless you are staying in air-conditioned or well-screened housing, purchase a bed net impregnated with the insecticide permethrin or deltamethrin. Or, spray the bed net with one of these insecticides if you are unable to find a pretreated bed net.
- DEET may be used on adults, children, and infants older than 2 months of age. Protect infants by using a carrier draped with mosquito netting with an elastic edge for a tight fit.
- Children under 10 years old should not apply insect repellent themselves. Do not apply to young children’s hands or around eyes and mouth.
- Eat only thoroughly cooked food or fruits and vegetables you have peeled yourself. Remember: boil it, cook it, peel it, or forget it.
- To prevent fungal and parasitic infections, keep feet clean and dry, and do not go barefoot.
- Always use latex condoms to reduce the risk of HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases.
To avoid getting sick...
- Dont eat food purchased from street vendors.
- Dont drink beverages with ice.
- Dont eat dairy products unless you know they have been pasteurized.
- Dont share needles with anyone.
- Dont handle animals (especially monkeys, dogs, and cats), to avoid bites and serious diseases (including rabies and plague.
- Dont swim in fresh water, including the Nile. Salt water is usually safer.
Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Travelers to Algeria are at risk from leishmaniasis transmitted by sandflies, malaria in the Sahara oasis areas, and tick-borne diseases.Travelers should use topical insect repellent and wear insecticide-treated clothing.
The water supply in Algeria is contaminated with viruses, bacteria and protozoa. Travelers should treat water before drinking to avoid potentially serious health problems.
SAFETY AND SECURITY: Although no Americans are known to have been killed by terrorists in Algeria, more than 120 third country nationals were murdered at the height of the terrorism threat in Algeria in the 1990s. In January 2001, terrorists killed several Russian citizens in the mountains of eastern Algeria. In February 2003, 32 Western Europeans were taken hostage in the Sahara desert areas of southeastern Algeria. Fourteen of the hostages were taken by the terrorists into northern Mali. One of the hostages died in captivity. All the others had been released by late August 2003.
In response to the terrorist threat, the U.S. Government substantially reduced the number of U.S. government personnel in Algeria during the 1990s. Currently, Embassy staffing is gradually increasing, and Embassy services are returning toward normalcy. Adult (over 21 years of age) family members may accompany Embassy officers and staff assigned to Algiers on two-year tours.
U.S. government employees now travel on official and personal business by commercial carriers to, from and within Algeria. U.S. citizens should carefully consider the security implications of traveling on regularly scheduled public ground transport and in taxis.
Areas of Instability: Although terrorist violence has substantially diminished in the major cities, terrorists continue to attack security forces and strike randomly at civilians outside urban areas. In recent months, there have been sporadic terrorist incidents near the capital. Terrorist acts in rural areas continue on an irregular basis.
Although the Government of Algeria has discontinued a late-night curfew in the central area of Algiers, it continues to maintain roadblocks on some of the principal roads heading into and out of the capital. (See the Traffic Safety section below.)
There were several large political demonstrations in Algiers and the Kabylie region to the east of the capital during the spring and summer of 2001. Since then, demonstrations in Algiers have been banned, although there were several small demonstrations in March and April 2003 against the war in Iraq.
Travel overland, treacherous in many parts of Algeria, requires a permit issued by the Algerian government. The Department of State recommends that American citizens in Algeria avoid traveling overland outside major urban areas. Americans who must travel overland or work in locations outside of major cities should do so with substantial armed protection.
CRIME: The crime rate in Algeria is moderately high and increasing. Serious crimes have been reported in which armed men posing as police officers have entered homes of occupants, and robbed them at gunpoint. Armed carjacking is also a serious problem. Petty theft and home burglary occur frequently, and muggings are on the rise, especially after dark in the cities. Theft of contents and parts from parked cars, pick pocketing, theft on trains and buses, theft of items left in hotel rooms and purse snatching are common. Alarms, grills, watchdogs and/or guards protect most foreigners' residences.
The loss or theft abroad of a U.S. passport should be reported immediately to the local police and the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate. If you are the victim of a crime while overseas, in addition to reporting to local police, please contact the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate for assistance. The Embassy/Consulate staff can, for example, assist you to find appropriate medical care, to contact family members or friends and explain how funds can be transferred. Although the investigation and prosecution of the crime is solely the responsibility of local authorities, consular officers can help you understand the local criminal justice process and to find an attorney if needed.
U.S. citizens may refer to the Department of State's pamphlets, A Safe Trip Abroad and Tips for Travelers to the Middle East and North Africa, for ways to promote a trouble-free journey. The pamphlets are available by mail from the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, D.C. 20402, via the Internet at http://www.gpoaccess.gov/index.html, or via the Bureau of Consular Affairs home page at http://travel.state.gov.
Source: U.S. Department of State
Northern Algeria enjoys a Mediterranean climate with warm, dry summers and mild, wet and humid winters. In eastern Algeria, the average temperatures are somewhat lower, and on the steppes of the High Plateaus winter temperatures hover only a few degrees above freezing. A prominent feature of the climate in this region is the sirocco, a dusty, choking south wind blowing off the desert, sometimes at gale force. This wind also occasionally reaches into the coastal Tell. A relatively small corner of the Sahara lies across the Tropic of Cancer in the torrid zone, and even in winter, midday desert temperatures can be very hot. After sunset, however, the clear, dry air cools quickly, and the nights are cool to chilly. Enormous daily ranges in temperature are recorded. Rainfall is fairly abundant along the coastal part of the Tell, increasing from west to east. Precipitation is heaviest in the northern part of eastern Algeria, becoming is less plentiful further inland.
Algeria's electrical current is 220/50 (volts/hz) and uses the plug adaptors listed to the right under Related Items. Many North American appliances are designed to operate only within the 100-125 volt range. These appliances will suffer damage if plugged into 220-250 volts without the proper transformer or converter.
To determine which plug adaptors you'll need and if you'll require a transformer or converter, use our Electrical Connection Wizard.
For a detailed discussion of international electrical standards, see our related article on Electrical and Phone Adaptation.
ENTRY/EXIT REQUIREMENTS: Passports and visas are required for U.S. citizens traveling to Algeria. For more information concerning entry requirements, travelers may contact the Embassy of the Democratic and Popular Republic of Algeria at 2137 Wyoming Avenue N.W., Washington, D.C. 20008, telephone (202) 265-2800 or go to http://www.algeria-us.org/ on the Internet.
In an effort to prevent international child abduction, many governments have initiated procedures at entry/exit points. These often include requiring documentary evidence of relationship and permission for the child's travel from the parent(s) or legal guardian if not present. Having such documentation on hand, even if not required, may facilitate entry/departure.
Algerian fathers of minor children (under 18 years of age for boys, 19 years of age for girls) can legally prevent their children from leaving Algeria.
Source: U.S. Department of State
The time zone for Algeria is 1 hours offset from GMT, which means that if it is 12:00 noon in New York, the time in Algeria would be 6:00 pm
The unit of currency in Algeria is the Algerian dinar (DZD).
Look up the current exchange rate using XE.com's Universal Currency Converter
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