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Uruguay

If you’re travelling to Uruguay, our travel advice and updates give you practical tips and useful information. 

Security Status

  • Normal precautions
  • High degree of caution
  • Avoid non-essential travel
  • Do not travel
  • Overview
  • Safety and Security
  • Local Laws and Customs
  • Natural Disasters and Climate
  • Additional Information
  • Embassy Contact

Overview

Overview

General COVID-19 Travel Advisory in Operation:

Avoid non-essential travel until further notice:

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade advises against all non-essential travel overseas until further notice. This includes Great Britain but does not apply to Northern Ireland. It also includes all travel by cruise ship.

If you are currently travelling outside of Ireland:

Flight restrictions and route cancellations are happening on a daily basis worldwide and there is no guarantee that air routes will continue to operate. For this reason, where commercial flights are still an option, we recommend that people who wish to do so make arrangements to return to Ireland as soon as possible.

We are working with airlines to show maximum flexibility to those passengers who need to change their existing flight arrangements. Where commercial flights are no longer available, we are working side-by-side with our international partners to identify alternative options where possible.

It may not be feasible or possible for everyone who wants to travel back to Ireland to do so in the short term. We ask Irish citizens remaining abroad to make decisions that safeguard their health and well-being and that they follow local public health and safety requirements. We ask that they remain in close contact with family, friends and their local Irish Embassy or Consulate.

We know that this is a stressful situation for citizens and our embassy network is working around the clock to provide people with all the information and assistance that we can, bearing in mind the situation is unfolding across multiple countries and is not one under our control.

What to do on entering Ireland from abroad:

The Irish Health Authorities require anyone coming into Ireland, apart from Northern Ireland, to restrict their movements on arrival for 14 days. Check the Irish Health Service COVID-19 Advice Page for full information on these requirements. This includes Irish residents. Exemptions are in place for providers of essential supply chain services such as hauliers, pilots and maritime staff.

Where to go for more information:

We continue to make updates to our online travel advice for over 200 countries and recommend that you download our TravelWise App and follow us on Twitter. If abroad you should register with your local Irish Embassy or Consulate and regularly check their website and Twitter accounts for details of any local public health measures and travel restrictions.

Security status

We advise you to avoid non-essential travel due to strict self-isolation arrangements on arrival and disruption to travel.

Latest Travel Advice

COVID-19 Novel Coronavirus

In the last days, emergency responses to the COVID-19 crisis in many countries in Latin America and the Caribbean have included restrictions of flights from Europe; restrictive new quarantine arrangements in Central America as well as restrictions affecting admissions of Irish people already travelling in the region to other countries in Latin America.

There are no direct transatlantic flights to Ireland from the region. Therefore, given the uncertainty around transatlantic travel options into Ireland we strongly recommend that Irish travellers make early arrangements to travel out of /from the region.

Moreover, we very strongly advise against any further travel into the region until the COVID-19 crisis has been contained there.

Cases of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) have been reported in many countries worldwide including in Uruguay.

The Uruguayan authorities have announced additional measures to combat the spread of the virus including travel restrictions and quarantine requirements.

The Uruguayan Government requires that all passengers arriving from China, South Korea, Italy, Japan, Singapore, Iran, France and Germany, and those who have had contact with a COVID-19 infected person, self-isolate for a period of 14 days.

At present, cruise ships are currently only allowed to dock in Montevideo for resupplies and refuelling. Passengers and crew are unable to disembark and cruise ship companies are working to redirect ships.

Further measures may be imposed at short notice and specific details may change rapidly, including where and to whom they apply to and for how long. All travellers should stay informed of measures being taken by authorities in the areas they are travelling to.

If you are in Uruguay you should monitor developments regularly and follow the advice of local authorities.

Be alert to common signs of infection: respiratory problems, fever, cough, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties. Seek medical advice if you experience these symptoms.

HSE medical advice to protect yourself from getting COVID-19 (Coronavirus) is below.

Do:

• wash your hands properly and regularly with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub

• cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve when you cough and sneeze

• put used tissues into a bin and wash your hands

Don’t:

• touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean

Check with your doctor well in advance of travelling to see if you need any vaccinations for Uruguay.

Additional information on COVID-19 can be found via the following links:

Uruguayan Ministry of Health

HSE

HPSC

ECDC

World Health Organisation

Emergency assistance

The best help is often close at hand so if you have problems, try talking to your local contacts, tour operator representative or hotel management.

We suggest you learn as much as you can about Uruguay before your trip from travel agents, tour operators and guide books. The best help is often close at hand so if you have problems when you’re in Uruguay, try talking to your local contacts, tour operator representative or hotel management.

To report emergencies, contact the police, an ambulance, or the fire department by dialling 911 from any phone.

Police - 109;

Ambulance - 105;

Fire - 104.

Because there is no Irish Embassy or Consulate in Uruguay, we’re limited in the help we can offer you in an emergency. However, if you need assistance, you can contact the Irish Embassy in Buenos Aires in Argentina.

If you phone outside of working hours, leave us a message giving:

  • Your name
  • The nature of your problem
  • Where you are now
  • Your contact details (mobile phone number or phone number of where you’re staying)

We regularly monitor these messages and one of our staff members will be in contact with you.

EU Directive on Consular Protection
 
Under the EU Consular Protection Directive, Irish nationals may seek assistance from the Embassy or Consulate of any other EU member state in a country where there is no Irish Embassy or permanent representation.

Our tips for Safe Travels:

  • Purchase comprehensive travel insurance which covers all your intended activities.
  • Add an alert for your destination within the Travelwise App.
  • Register your details with us so that we can contact you quickly if there’s an unforeseen crisis like a natural disaster or a family emergency.
  • Follow us on twitter @dfatravelwise for the latest travel updates.
  • Read our ‘Know Before You Go’ guide.

Safety and Security

Safety and security

Crime

Most visits to Uruguay are trouble-free but you should be careful of street crime in the capital city, Montevideo. Other parts of Uruguay, including Punta del Este are considered relatively safe, but we still advise you to be alert and take sensible precautions:

Petty crime

Street crime exists in Montevideo, but is usually restricted to handbag snatching and pick-pocketing. Muggings and robberies (occasionally armed) do sometimes occur, but increased police patrols in Montevideo’s port and old town areas have helped reduce street crime.

Car crime

Car crime is common in Montevideo. Always try to park in a well-lit area, and remember to lock your car and avoid leaving luggage, personal documents and cash in the vehicle.

Driving

The standard of roads in Uruguay varies. The main toll road to Punta del Este is good and well marked.  Elsewhere many roads are in reasonable condition while some are in poor condition and you will need to take extra care. 

Driving standards in Uruguay are not high, relative to Irish standards. Be aware that traffic is disorganised and drivers often change lane and make unexpected turns without indicating.  Stop signs, traffic lights and speed limits are frequently ignored.

If you want to drive:

  • Bring your full Irish driving licence and your  international driving permit and make sure you have adequate and appropriate insurance
  • Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs is against the law and you risk being detained, fined or banned from driving if caught
  • Take extra care when driving at night
  • Use of dipped headlights is mandatory during the day when travelling on major roads outside cities
  • Keep your vehicle doors locked and your bags out of sight to prevent opportunistic bag-snatching if you’re stopped at traffic lights

Hiring a vehicle

If you’re hiring a vehicle, we advise you not to hand over your passport as a form of security. If you’re allowing your passport to be photocopied, keep it in your sight at all times.

Check that you have adequate insurance and read the small print of the vehicle hire contract (particularly any waiver that will come into effect if the vehicle is damaged).

Local Laws and Customs

Local laws and customs

Illegal drugs

The penalties for those caught trafficking or in possession of drugs are very harsh. Be very careful with your luggage and belongings and avoid any contact with prohibited drugs.

Natural Disasters and Climate

Natural disasters and climate

Practical advice

  • Get local advice on how to manage in the case of a serious incident or dangerous conditions
  • Co-operate with local authorities and emergency services in the case of serious incidents

Additional Information

Additional information

Entry requirements (visa/passport)

If you are unsure about the entry requirements for Uruguay, including visa and other immigration information, ask your travel agent or contact the nearest Embassy of Uruguay.

You can also check with them how long your passport must be valid for.

Passports

It’s advisable to take a number of photocopies of your passport with you when travelling to Uruguay and you should carry a photocopy of your passport at all times during your stay.

 

Embassy contact

Embassy Contact

Outside office hours, for genuine emergencies involving Irish citizens, which cannot wait until the next working day, please call +54 9 11 5945 7483.

You may also wish to contact the Duty Officer at the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade in Dublin on +353 1 408 2000

Embassy of Ireland
Edificio Bluesky
6th Floor
Avenida del Libertador 1068
Recoleta
Buenos Aires
Argentina

Tel: +54 11 5787 0801
Fax: +54 11 5787 0802

Monday to Friday09:00-13:00

Contact us