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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

General COVID-19 Travel Advisory in Operation

General advice to avoid non-essential travel and ‘Normal Precautions’ list of exemptions:

In accordance with Government policy, which is based on official public health advice, the Department of Foreign Affairs continues to advise against non-essential travel overseas. This includes Great Britain but does not apply to Northern Ireland. It also includes all travel by cruise ship.

Travel to a very limited set of locations is exempted from this advice. Individuals arriving into Ireland from these locations will not be required to restrict their movements upon entry. These locations currently have a ‘normal precautions’ (“green”) security status rating. As of 4 August 2020, these locations are:

  • Estonia
  • Finland
  • Greece
  • Greenland
  • Hungary
  • Italy
  • Latvia
  • Lithuania
  • Norway
  • Slovakia

Inclusion on the list is based on the current epidemiological situation and related public health information in each location. The list and related travel advice will be reviewed on a fortnightly basis, based on advice from officials, including public health experts. Any updates or changes will be based on Government decisions. The latest updates will always be uploaded first to this General COVID-19 Travel Advisory. Country-specific tabs will be updated subsequently, and as quickly as possible, but this advisory is the primary source of information for the latest version of the list. The above list was updated on 4 August following the latest review.

If you are considering travelling outside of Ireland:

Irish citizens travelling to locations with a ‘normal precautions’ (“green”) rating are advised to follow the public health guidelines of the local health authorities and to continue to practice physical distancing measures, hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette etc. The security rating for all other locations remains unchanged at either to ‘avoid non-essential travel’ (“orange”) or to ‘do not travel’ (“red”).

The purpose of the Department’s Travel Advice is to provide information to the general public so that individuals can make informed decisions for themselves.  The COVID19 pandemic continues to accelerate internationally, and there are significant risks associated with international travel. Citizens should be aware of the possible limitations to any consular assistance that could be provided. Any citizens who are considering travel abroad are advised to monitor closely our travel advice and we recommend that citizens download our TravelWise App and follow us on Twitter. Citizens travelling abroad should also register with their local Irish Embassy or Consulate and regularly check their website and Twitter accounts for details of any local public health measures and travel restrictions.

Should you need to travel for essential reasons, you should inform yourself about any requirements in place in the destination to which you are travelling.  Flight restrictions and route cancellations are happening on a daily basis worldwide and there is no guarantee that air routes will continue to operate as scheduled. Testing and restrictions may be imposed or may already be in place in other countries. It is important to check with your insurance provider on coverage at this time.

What to do on entering Ireland from abroad:

The Irish Authorities advise anyone coming into Ireland, apart from Northern Ireland and individuals arriving in Ireland from locations with a security rating of ‘normal precautions’ (“green”), to restrict their movements for 14 days, and this includes citizens and residents returning to Ireland. Restricting your movements means staying indoors in one location and avoiding contact with other people and social situations as much as possible. To ensure that this is being observed all passengers arriving to Ireland from overseas are obliged to complete a mandatory Public Health Passenger Locator Form and to submit it to the relevant authority at their port of entry. For further details please see the Irish Government Advice Page. Exemptions are also in place for providers of essential supply chain services such as hauliers, pilots and maritime staff. Check the Irish Government Advice Page for full information on these requirements and further advice on returning from abroad.

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.

Overview

Security status

We advise you to avoid non-essential travel.

Security Status Last Updated: 15 March 2020

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.

Direct flights to and from Europe and the US are currently suspended and the border with Argentina, including ferry services, is closed. Only Uruguayan nationals and residents are allowed to enter Uruguay.

Over the month of April, there are limited flights available with Amaszonas to Sao Paulo, from where there are limited onward flight options. Please follow up directly with the airline and check the travel advice for any country that you will be connecting through.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