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U.S. Citizens Services

Embassy Messages for U.S. Citizens

Latest Message for U.S. Citizens

U.S. Embassy Bogota
Security Message for U.S. Citizens – Weekend Safety Reminders
July 3, 2014
The U.S. Embassy in Bogota reminds U.S. citizens residing or traveling in Colombia to exercise additional caution and personal safety measures over the weekend of July 4-6. The National Liberation Army or Ejército de Liberación Nacional (ELN) will be marking its 50 year anniversary on July 4, 2014. ELN has traditionally used the period surrounding significant anniversary dates to conduct anti-government attacks.  The anniversary also coincides with the Colombia vs. Brazil World Cup soccer match. 
The Colombian National Police (CNP) has informed the Embassy of heightened security measures for the July 4th World Cup match, which begins at 1500 hrs.  During recent World Cup matches involving the Colombian team, CNP reported numerous fights amongst fans in locations around the country which resulted in multiple deaths and serious injuries.  There was also a dramatic increase in petty thefts.  As a precaution, it is recommended that all U.S. citizens exercise caution and avoid large public gatherings, including public screenings of World Cup matches.  
For Friday’s match, the Bogota Municipal government has imposed the following mitigation measures for Bogota:
The “Pico & Placa” traffic restriction will be in force all day from 0600 hrs until 1930 hrs. on July 4. Note: This will mostly affect residents with cars, not tourists.
“Ley Seca” (no alcohol sales, possession or consumption in public) will be in effect from 1000 until 2200 hrs. on Friday, July 4. 
Regardless of the outcome, the U.S. Embassy recommends that all U.S. citizens should anticipate unruly crowds and transportation delays before and after the match. 
We strongly recommend that U.S. citizens traveling to or residing in Colombia enroll in the Department of State's Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP).  STEP gives you the latest security updates, and makes it easier for the U.S. embassy to contact you in an emergency.  If you don't have Internet access, enroll directly with the nearest U.S. embassy.
Regularly monitor the State Department's website where you can find current Travel Warnings, including the Travel Warning for Colombia, Travel Alerts, and the Worldwide Caution.  Read the Country Specific Information for Colombia.  For additional information, refer to "A Safe Trip Abroad" on the State Department's website.
Contact the U.S. embassy for up-to-date information on travel restrictions.  You can also call 1-888-407-4747 toll-free from within the United States and Canada, or 1-202-501-4444 from other countries.  These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).  Follow us on Twitter and Facebook. 
You can contact the American Citizen Services Unit at the U.S. Embassy in Bogota, Colombia, via e-mail or by telephone at (571) 275-2000.  The U.S. Embassy is located at Carrera 45, # 24B-27, Bogota, D.C., Colombia and is open to the public by appointment on Monday through Thursday from 09:00 to 11:30.  You can schedule a non-emergency at the Embassy’s website.
The Embassy operates a Consular Agency in Barranquilla, Colombia which also provides assistance to U.S. citizens.  The Barranquilla Consular Agency is located at Calle 77B No. 57-141, suite 511.  Hours are 8:00 a.m. to noon, Monday through Friday.  No appointment is necessary but please call ahead to (5) 353-2001 or (5) 353-2182 to make sure that the service you require can be performed at the time you plan to visit.

Security Message for U.S. Citizens:  Chikungunya virus in Colombia
October 29, 2014

The U.S. Embassy informs U.S. citizens living and traveling in Colombia of a public health concern regarding the chikungunya virus.  Chikungunya virus is a mosquito transmitted virus recently identified in Colombia and spreading.  Symptoms typically include fever and joint pain of the hands and feet that begin 3-7 days after being bitten by an infected mosquito. 

Other symptoms may include muscle pain, headache, fever, joint swelling, and rash.  There is no vaccine or medication to prevent chikungunya virus infection or any antiviral medications to treat it at this time.  While deaths are rare, people at increased risk for severe disease include newborns, adults over 65 years, and those with chronic health conditions.  The presentation of chikungunya is similar to dengue. 

Citizens are encouraged to seek medical attention if they are showing symptoms, and especially if the fever is over 102 F (above 39 C).  At this time, prevention measures are focused on reducing mosquito exposure by the use of mosquito repellents, covering exposed skin, permethrin-treated clothing, mosquito control measures like emptying water from outdoor containers, and supporting local mosquito control measures.  Anyone sick with chikungunya should avoid mosquito bites to help prevent further spreading of the virus.  Please visit the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) website on Chikungunya virus for additional information.

To obtain CDC travel notices, call 1-800-CDC-INFO (1-800-232-4636) from within the United States, or 1-404-639-3534 from overseas, or visit the CDC website at http://www.cdc.gov/travel.

We strongly recommend that U.S. citizens traveling to or residing in Colombia enroll in the Department of State’s Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP).  STEP enrollment gives you the latest security updates, and makes it easier for the U.S. embassy or nearest U.S. consulate to contact you in an emergency.  If you don’t have Internet access, enroll directly with the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.

Regularly monitor the State Department's website, where you can find current Travel Warnings, Travel Alerts, and the Worldwide Caution.  Read the Country Information For Colombia.  For additional information, refer to the Traveler’s Checklist on the State Department's website.
Emergencies involving U.S. citizens can be reported to the U.S. Embassy by contacting the American Citizen Services (ACS) Unit, located at Calle 24 Bis No.48-50, Bogota, D.C., Colombia or via email through ACSBogota@state.gov.

Final Opportunities to Return Voted Ballots
21 October 2014

Embassies and consulates are not polling places.  The majority of states require voted ballots to reach local election officials by the close of polls on Tuesday, November 4.  U.S. citizens who want to participate in the 2014 U.S. elections should already have returned their absentee ballots to their local election officials.  U.S. embassies and consulates are not polling places; same-day in-person voting is not available outside the United States.

Never received your ballot?  If you have registered to vote and requested your absentee ballot prior to your state’s registration and absentee ballot request deadlines but have not yet received your ballot, should immediately complete and return a Federal Write-in Absentee Ballot to ensure your vote reaches election officials by your state’s deadline.  If your regular ballot arrives later, go ahead and complete and return it as well.  Your Federal Write-in Absentee Ballot will only be counted if your regular ballot does not reach local election officials by your state’s deadline.  Your vote will not be counted twice.

Ballot not yet sent to local election officials? If you wish to participate in this election and have not yet sent your ballot to your local election official, you should consider returning your ballot to the United States via an express courier service such as FedEx, UPS, or DHL.  Some states or counties may allow you to return your voted ballot electronically.  Ballots sent to local election officials via express courier service do not receive standard postmarks, so voters using this method should confirm delivery on or before November 4 prior to payment and shipment.  Check your state’s voting procedures at www.FVAP.gov for guidance.

Returning your Federal Write-in Absentee Ballot by email or fax.  If you have previously registered to vote and requested an absentee ballot but it has not yet arrived the following states allow voters to use email or fax to send signed, voted Federal Write-in Absentee Ballots to local election officials:  Arizona, California (fax only), Colorado, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Hawaii (fax only), Indiana, Kansas, Maine, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska (paper copy must also be mailed), Nevada, New Jersey (paper copy must also be mailed), New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon (paper copy must also be mailed), South Carolina, Utah, Washington, and West Virginia.  Check your state’s voting procedures at www.FVAP.gov for guidance.

Returning your ballot by mail.  Ballots sent via regular international mail at this late date are unlikely to reach local election officials by state ballot receipt deadlines.  If you still wish to send your voted ballot via mail, place your voted ballot in a U.S. postage-paid envelope addressed to your local election officials.  Drop it off at the U.S. Embassy Bogota, and we’ll send it back home for you without the need to pay international postage.  If you can’t visit the Embassy in person, ask a friend or colleague drop it off for you.  If it’s easier for you to use Colombia's postal system, be sure to affix sufficient international postage, and allow sufficient time for international mail delivery. 

You can drop off your completed voting forms and ballots, addressed to your local election officials, at the American Citizen Services unit of the consular section at the U.S. Embassy Bogota during the following hours:

8:00 am to 4:00 pm Monday through Friday.  The Embassy is located at Carrera 45 No. 24B-27.  Normal transit time from Bogota to the United States is 10 days. If you will use the Colombian postal system to send your ballot to the American Citizen Services unit, please use the address above and mark your envelope: Absentee Ballot.

HELP SPREAD THE WORD ABOUT OVERSEAS VOTING.  Please help spread the word to your friends, family, and colleagues that now is the time to start thinking about overseas voting.  Consider posting to your Twitter, Instagram, Facebook or other social media account that you are an active voter and will be dropping off or mailing your Federal Post Card Application or completed ballot.  Use #ProudOverseasVoter to help get the word out about voting.

Need help?  You can get in-person assistance from our Embassy Voting Assistance Officer:  American Citizen Services unit, Consular Section, U.S. Embassy Bogota, 8:00 am to 4:00 pm Monday through Friday.  The Embassy is located at Carrera 45 No. 24B-27.  This is the same place and time where you can drop off ballots for return to the U.S.
Have Questions?  Please contact U.S. Embassy Bogota's Voting Assistance Officer at +57-1-275-2000, or at votebogota@state.gov
Confirm your registration and ballot delivery online.  Learn more at the Federal Voting Assistance Program's (FVAP) website at www.FVAP.gov.

Message for U.S. Citizens
October 17, 2014
The U.S. Embassy is Coming to You!
 
To further assist U.S. citizens in Colombia, the U.S. Embassy will be visiting Medellin on Friday, November 21st, to accept passport and report of birth applications and perform notary services.  Please be aware that these are the only services that will be provided on that day, and we will not be able to respond to visa questions or Social Security questions.  We also are unable to apostille documents.
 
If you live in or near Medellin and wish to take advantage of this program, you MUST make an appointment for the appropriate service online, or you will NOT be attended. This is a change from our previous passport acceptance day in order to better serve U.S. citizens and keep waiting time to a minimum.  Please review carefully the information on the specific requirements and forms on our website: http://bogota.usembassy.gov/service.html.

Appointments can only be scheduled by clicking here or by following guidance on the U.S. Embassy website.  We have a limited number of appointments on November 21st, and we apologize in advance if we are unable to accept your case that day.  If you are unable to attend this event, you will generally need to travel to Bogota to apply for a consular service.
 
Event: American Citizen Services in Medellin Passports, Notary Services, and Consular Reports of Birth Abroad
 
Date: Friday, November 21, 2014
 
Location: Centro Colombo Americano in El Poblado
Carrera 43 (Av. El Poblado) Nº 1 - 50. Local 334
Centro Empresarial San Fernando Plaza (El Poblado)  Medellín
PBX: (574) 204 0404
http://www.colomboworld.com
 
Hours: 8:00 am to 12:00 pm: Passports (adults and children)

Registration of Births Abroad 1:30 pm to 4:00 pm

Passports (adults and children), Notary Services, Registration of Births Abroad. 
 
IMPORTANT

  • Payment can ONLY be made by cashier’s check (cheque de gerencia
  • Checks must be made out to “Embajada de los Estados Unidos de America NIT 800.090.823-1
  • Exact payment must be in COLOMBIAN PESOS

Fees:

  • Notary Services: $105.000 COP per notary signature
  • Passport (ADULT RENEWAL): $231.000 COP
  • Passport (ADULT FIRST TIME)**: $283.500 COP
  • Passport (CHILD, 15 yrs and under): $220.500 COP
  • Extra Pages:$172.200 COP

**Note: this fee is charged even if you had a passport as a child 

Delivery: A representative for Domesa will be available to schedule return delivery services at an additional cost of more or less $43.300 COP.
 
*Again, please remember to bring all required forms as listed on the U.S. Embassy website* 
 
You can contact the American Citizen Services Unit at the U.S. Embassy in Bogota, Colombia, via e-mail at ACSbogota@state.gov. The U.S. Embassy in Bogota is open to the public for non-emergency services by appointment only. 
 
Don’t forget to sign up for the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program!

A free and fast service provided by the U.S. Government that lets U.S. citizens abroad provide useful contact information to the U.S. Embassy in case of an emergency. Enrolled U.S citizens who provide a valid e-mail address also receive regular travel updates, messages, and alerts. To sign up or edit your information please visit the following website: https://step.state.gov/step/.

WORLDWIDE CAUTION
OCTOBER 10, 2014

The Department of State is updating the Worldwide Caution to provide information on the continuing threat of terrorist actions and violence against U.S. citizens and interests throughout the world. U.S. citizens are reminded to maintain a high level of vigilance and to take appropriate steps to increase their security awareness. This replaces the Worldwide Caution dated April 10, 2014.

The Department of State remains concerned about the continued threat of terrorist attacks, demonstrations, and other violent actions against U.S. citizens and interests overseas. On September 22, 2014, the United States and regional partners commenced military action against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), a designated  terrorist organization in Syria and Iraq. In response to the airstrikes, ISIL called on supporters to attack foreigners wherever they are. Authorities believe there is an increased likelihood of reprisal attacks against U.S., Western and coalition partner interests throughout the world, especially in the Middle East, North Africa, Europe, and Asia.

Kidnappings and hostage events involving U.S. citizens have become increasingly prevalent as ISIL, al Qa`ida and its affiliates have increased attempts to finance their operations through kidnapping for ransom operations. ISIL, al-Qa’ida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) and al-Qa’ida in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) are particularly effective with kidnapping for ransom and are using ransom money to fund the range of their activities. Kidnapping targets are usually Western citizens from governments or third parties that have established a pattern of paying ransoms for the release of individuals in custody.

Extremists may elect to use conventional or non-conventional weapons, and target both official and private interests. Examples of such targets include high-profile sporting events, residential areas, business offices, hotels, clubs, restaurants, places of worship, schools, public areas, shopping malls, and other tourist destinations both in the United States and abroad where U.S. citizens gather in large numbers, including during holidays.

U.S. citizens are reminded of the potential for terrorists to attack public transportation systems and other tourist infrastructure. Extremists have targeted and attempted attacks on subway and rail systems, aviation, and maritime services. In the past, these types of attacks have occurred in cities such as Moscow, London, Madrid, Glasgow, and New York City.

EUROPE: Current information suggests that ISIL, al-Qa’ida, its affiliated organizations, and other terrorist groups continue to plan terrorist attacks against U.S. and Western interests in Europe. Authorities believe the likelihood of a terror attack in Europe is increased as European members of ISIL return from Syria and Iraq. Additionally, there is a continuing threat in Europe from unaffiliated persons planning attacks inspired by major terrorist organizations but conducted on an individual basis. In the past several years, organized extremist attacks have been planned or carried out in various European countries. European governments have taken action to guard against terrorist attacks, and some have made official declarations regarding heightened threat conditions.

MIDDLE EAST and NORTH AFRICA: Credible information indicates terrorist groups also seek to continue attacks against U.S. interests in the Middle East and North Africa. The U.S. government remains highly concerned about possible attacks against U.S. citizens, facilities, businesses, and perceived U.S. and Western interests.
No part of Syria should be considered immune from violence. The security situation remains dangerous and unpredictable as a civil war between government and armed anti-government groups continues throughout the country. There is an increased threat of terrorism from groups such as ISL, al-Nusrah, as well as other extremists whose tactics include use of suicide bombers, kindappings, use of small and heavy arms, and improvised explosive devices (IEDs). Since the start of the uprising against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's regime in March 2011, the United States has received reports of numerous foreigners kidnapped in Syria, many of whom are still in captivity. The majority of the victims are journalists and aid workers. U.S. citizens and other Westerners have been murdered by ISIL in Syria. Violent extremists from various countries operate in Syria and may be planning attacks against the United States and other Western targets.

A number of extremist groups also operate in Lebanon and the potential for death or injury in Lebanon exists because of periodic terrorist bombing attacks throughout the country. As a result of spillover violence from the Syria crisis, Sunni groups are active and Hizballah, a group designated by the U.S. government as a terrorist organization, has been present and active for many years.

U.S. citizens in Iraq remain at high risk for kidnapping and terrorist violence. Numerous insurgent groups, including ISIL, previously known as al-Qa’ida in Iraq, remain active and terrorist activity and violence persist in many areas of the country. ISIL and its allies control Mosul, Iraq’s second largest city, and have captured significant territory across central Iraq and continue to engage with Iraqi security forces in that region.

Al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), the Movement for Unity and Jihad in West Africa (MUJAO), and al-Murabitun remain active and operate primarily in southern Algeria, southwestern Libya and Tunisia in the wake of French and African intervention in northern Mali. In Algeria, terrorists sporadically attack Westerners and Algerian government targets, particularly in the Kabylie region, and near Algeria’s borders with Libya and Mali. In September, a French tourist was kidnapped and murdered by an Algerian-based terrorist group. Terrorists have targeted oil processing plants in Algeria, Saudi Arabia, and Yemen. In Libya, various groups have called for attacks against U.S. citizens and U.S. interests. Terrorist organizations continue to be active in Yemen, including al-Qa’ida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP).

AFRICA: Al-Qa’ida  continues to operate primarily in North Africa. Vestiges of extremist elements, including AQIM, MUJAO, and al-Murabitun continue small scale operations in northern Mali mostly related to planting land mines on lines of communication used by UN peacekeeping troops. The major parts of these groups were forced to move to southern Algeria, southwestern Libya and Tunisia in the wake of French and African intervention in northern Mali. Terrorist groups have stepped up their  rhetoric calling for additional attacks or kidnapping attempts on westerners and others, particularly those linked to support for international military intervention.

Additionally, the terrorist group AQIM has declared its intention to attack Western targets throughout the Sahel (an area that stretches across the African continent between the Atlantic Ocean and the Red Sea to include Senegal, Mali, Algeria, Niger, Chad, Sudan, and Eritrea). It has claimed responsibility for kidnappings, attempted kidnappings, and the murder of several Westerners throughout the region, including southern Algeria.
Al-Shabaab assassinations, suicide bombings, hostage taking, and indiscriminate attacks in civilian-populated areas are frequent in Somalia.

Terrorist operatives and armed groups in Somalia have demonstrated their intent to attack Somali authorities, the African Union Mission in Somalia, and non-military targets such as international donor offices and humanitarian assistance providers. Al-Shabaab retains its demonstrated capability to carry out attacks in government-controlled territory in Somalia and in neighboring countries such as Kenya and Djibouti.
Boko Haram, an extremist group based in northeast Nigeria, has claimed responsibility for many attacks, mainly in northern Nigeria. The first months of 2014 have seen a continued increase in Boko Haram attacks and clashes with Nigerian government security forces in northern Nigeria.

Boko Haram has also targeted women and children for kidnapping, reportedly kidnapping women in northern states for marriage as “slave brides,” and kidnapping more than 200 school girls from a private school in Borno state. Boko Haram is known to descend on whole towns, robbing banks and businesses, attacking police and military installations, and setting fire to private homes. U.S. citizen missionaries in northern Nigeria have received specific written threats to their safety and well-being, although none have yet been harmed.

U.S. citizens considering travel by sea near the Horn of Africa, the Gulf of Guinea, or in the southern Red Sea should exercise extreme caution, as there have been armed attacks, robberies, and kidnappings for ransom by pirates. The threat of hijacking to merchant vessels continues to exist in Somali territorial waters and as far as 1,000 nautical miles off the coast of Somalia, Yemen, and Kenya in international waters. There has also been a recent rise in piracy and armed robbery in the Gulf of Guinea, including hijackings.

U.S. government maritime authorities advise mariners to avoid the port of Mogadishu and to remain at least 200 nautical miles off the coast of Somalia. In addition, when transiting around the Horn of Africa, the Gulf of Guinea, or in the Red Sea, it is strongly recommended that vessels travel in convoys and maintain good communications at all times. U.S. citizens traveling on commercial passenger vessels should consult with the shipping or cruise ship company regarding precautions that will be taken to avoid hijacking incidents. Commercial vessels should review the Department of Transportation Maritime Administration's Horn of Africa Piracy page for information on maritime advisories, self-protection measures, and naval forces in the region.

SOUTH ASIA: The U.S. government continues to receive information that terrorist groups in South Asia may also be planning attacks in the region, possibly against U.S. government facilities, U.S. citizens, or U.S. interests. The presence of al-Qa’ida, Taliban elements, Lashkar-e-Tayyiba, indigenous sectarian groups, and other terror organizations, many of which are on the U.S. government's list of designated Foreign Terrorist Organizations, poses a potential danger to U.S. citizens in the region.

Terrorists and their sympathizers have demonstrated their willingness and ability to attack locations where U.S. citizens or Westerners are known to congregate or visit.

The presence of several foreign and indigenous terrorist groups poses a danger to U.S. citizens throughout Pakistan. Across the country, terrorist attacks frequently occur against civilian, government, and foreign targets. Attacks have included armed assaults on heavily guarded sites, including Pakistani military installations and airports. The Government of Pakistan maintains heightened security measures, particularly in the major cities. Terrorists and criminal groups regularly resort to kidnapping for ransom.

No province in Afghanistan should be considered immune from violence and crime, and the strong possibility exists throughout the country for hostile acts, either targeted or random, against U.S. and other foreign nationals at any time. Elements of the former Taliban regime and members of other terrorist organizations hostile to the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan and foreign nationals remain active in every province of the country.  Furthermore, travel to all areas of Afghanistan remains unsafe due to ongoing military combat operations, landmines, banditry, armed rivalry between political and tribal groups, and the possibility of insurgent attacks, including attacks using vehicle-borne or other improvised explosive devices. U.S. citizens are increasingly targeted for kidnapping. The threat situation in Afghanistan is still considered critical and is expected to remain so through the current political and military transition.

India continues to experience terrorist and insurgent activities which may affect U.S. citizens directly or indirectly. Anti-Western terrorist groups active in India include Islamist extremist groups such as Harkat-ul-Jihad-i-Islami, Harakat ul-Mujahidin, Indian Mujahideen, Jaish-e-Mohammed, and Lashkar-e Tayyiba. Past attacks have targeted public places, including some frequented by Westerners, such as luxury and other hotels, trains, train stations, markets, cinemas, mosques, and restaurants in large urban areas. Attacks have taken place during the busy evening hours in markets and other crowded places, but could occur at any time.

CENTRAL ASIA: Supporters of terrorist groups such as the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, al-Qa’ida, the Islamic Jihad Union, and the Eastern Turkistan Islamic Movement remain active in Central Asia. These groups have expressed anti-U.S. sentiments and may attempt to target U.S. government interests.

EAST ASIA AND PACIFIC: Information from credible sources suggests that there is a continued risk of armed terrorist and criminal groups operating and planning attacks against foreigners, including U.S. citizens, in the East Asian and Pacific region. Jemaah Islamiyah (JI) and the Abu Sayyaf Group, have cells operating throughout Southeast Asia and JI is linked to al-Qaida and other regional terrorist groups.

There is a risk of travel to the southern Philippines, specifically related to kidnapping threats in the Sulu Archipelago and the ongoing threat of violence on the island of Mindanao, particularly in Central Mindanao.
Over the past year there have been several kidnappings-for-ransom targeting foreigners in the Eastern Sabah province of Malaysia and in the southern Sulu Sea area by terrorist or insurgent groups based in the Sulu Archipelago of the Philippines. In addition to incursions on the coastal and island resorts themselves, criminal or terrorist bands may attempt to intercept boats ferrying tourists in the area.

Indonesian security forces have disrupted a number of terrorist cells, including JI, a terrorist organization that carried out several significant bombings in Jakarta and Bali over the past decade. Although Indonesian counterterrorism efforts have been successful in preventing terrorists from conducting large-scale attacks in recent years, extremists in Indonesia may demonstrate a willingness and ability to carry out small-scale violent attacks with little or no warning.

Before You Go

The Department of State urges U.S. citizens living overseas or planning to travel abroad to enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP).  When you enroll in STEP, we can keep you up to date with important safety and security announcements.  Enrolling will also make it easier for the Embassy to contact you in the event of an emergency.  You should remember to keep all of your information in STEP up to date; it is particularly important when you enroll or update your information to include a current phone number and e-mail address.

U.S. citizens are strongly encouraged to maintain a high level of vigilance, be aware of local events, and take the appropriate steps to bolster their personal security. For additional information, please refer to Traveler's Checklist.

U.S. government facilities worldwide remain at a heightened state of alert.  These facilities may temporarily close or periodically suspend public services to assess their security posture.  In those instances, U.S. embassies and consulates will make every effort to provide emergency services to U.S. citizens.  U.S. citizens abroad are urged to monitor the local news and maintain contact with the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.

As the Department of State continues to develop information on potential security threats to U.S. citizens overseas, it shares credible threat information through its Consular Information Program documents, including Travel Warnings, Travel Alerts, Country Specific Information, and Emergency and Security Messages, all of which are available on the Bureau of Consular Affairs website at http://travel.state.gov. Stay up to date by bookmarking our website or downloading our free Smart Follow us on Twitter and the Bureau of Consular Affairs page on Facebook as well.

In addition to information on the internet, travelers may obtain up-to-date information on security conditions by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the United States and Canada or, from other countries, on a regular toll line at 1-202-501-4444. These numbers are available from 8:00 am to 8:00 pm Monday through Friday, Eastern Time (except U.S. federal holidays).

September 19
Absentee Voting Week is September 29-October 6

Be an Active Voter by taking the necessary steps to vote in the 2014 U.S. elections and participating in Absentee Voting Week!
 
In many states, the voter registration deadline for the November 2014 elections is October 6. For some voters this might mean their paper voter registration and absentee ballot request must reach their local election officials by October 6. In order to vote in the November 2014 elections, all overseas U.S. citizens need to have completed a Federal Post Card Application (FPCA) in 2014.  Whether you are a first-time voter or have already received ballots and voted absentee in past elections, you must complete an FPCA each year to ensure you are able to participate in elections as an overseas absentee voter. 
 
If you have already completed a Federal Post Card Application (FPCA) in 2014 and requested electronic delivery of your ballot, you will be receiving your blank ballot or instructions for how to access your ballot soon if you have not already received it.  If you are not sure about the status of your absentee ballot request you should contact your local election officials in the United States or check the status of your registration via your state’s voter registration verification website.
 
 
You can get voting assistance from the embassy or drop off your completed voting forms and ballots, addressed to your local election officials, during the following hours:
 
8:00 am to 4:00 pm Monday through Friday.  The Embassy is located at Carrera 45 No. 24B-27.  Normal transit time from Bogota to the United States is 10 days.
 
HELP SPREAD THE WORD ABOUT OVERSEAS VOTING
Please help spread the word to your friends, family, and colleagues that now is the time to start thinking about overseas voting.  Consider posting to your Twitter, Instagram, Facebook or other social media account that you are an active voter and will be dropping off or mailing your Federal Post Card Application or completed ballot. Use #ProudOverseasVoter to help get the word out about voting. 

If you have never voted while overseas before, it’s not too late. The process is easy ¬-- just follow these steps:
 
1. Complete a Federal Post Card Application (FPCA)
 
Whether you are a first-time voter or have voted absentee in past elections, complete an FPCA to receive your ballot this fall.  It allows you to register to vote and request absentee ballots for all elections for federal offices (presidential and state primaries, run-off, special, and the November general elections) during the course of the year in which you submit the FPCA.  Local election officials in all U.S. states and territories accept the FPCA.
 
The online voting assistant available at FVAP.gov is an easy way to complete the FPCA.  It will ask you questions specific to your state and tell you if electronic ballot delivery is possible.  No matter which state you vote in, we encourage you to ask your local election officials to deliver your blank ballots to you electronically (by email, internet download, or fax, depending on your state).  Be sure to include your email address to take advantage of electronic delivery.  The online voting assistant will generate a printable FPCA, which you can then print and sign.
 
2. Submit the Federal Post Card Application (FPCA)
 
See the information at the beginning of this message for options to drop off your FPCA in person to the U.S. Embassy in Bogota. 
 
If it’s more convenient for you, you can have a friend or family member drop off your FPCA at the embassy on your behalf or you can send your FPCA or ballot directly to your local election officials via international mail or professional courier service at your own expense. 
 
3.  Receive Your Ballot
 
After submitting your FPCA, most states allow you to confirm online your registration and ballot delivery selection.  States are now required to send out ballots 45 days before an election for federal office(President, U.S. Senate, or U.S. House of Representatives) to any overseas U.S. citizen who has completed an FPCA. 
 
4. Return Your Ballot
 
As with the FPCA, you can return your voted ballot to your local election officials free of charge via the nearest embassy or consulate or mail it directly at your own expense.
 
Your Vote Counts
Many U.S. elections within the past ten years have been decided by a margin of victory of less than 0.1%.  All states are required to count every absentee ballot as long as it is valid and reaches local election officials by the absentee ballot receipt deadline (differs by state). 
Be an educated voter.

Check out the FVAP links page for helpful resources that will aid your research of candidates and issues. You can also read national and hometown newspapers online, and search the Internet to locate articles and information.

To receive information by email about election dates and deadlines, subscribe to FVAP's Voting Alerts (vote@fvap.gov).  FVAP also shares Voting Alerts via Facebook and Twitter. If you have any questions about registering to vote overseas, please contact Embassy Bogota's Voting Assistance Officer at votebogota@state.gov.

U.S. Embassy BogotaSecurity Message for U.S. Citizens – Weekend Safety Reminders

July 3, 2014

The U.S. Embassy in Bogota reminds U.S. citizens residing or traveling in Colombia to exercise additional caution and personal safety measures over the weekend of July 4-6. The National Liberation Army or Ejército de Liberación Nacional (ELN) will be marking its 50 year anniversary on July 4, 2014. ELN has traditionally used the period surrounding significant anniversary dates to conduct anti-government attacks.

The anniversary also coincides with the Colombia vs. Brazil World Cup soccer match. The Colombian National Police (CNP) has informed the Embassy of heightened security measures for the July 4th World Cup match, which begins at 1500 hrs.  During recent World Cup matches involving the Colombian team, CNP reported numerous fights amongst fans in locations around the country which resulted in multiple deaths and serious injuries. There was also a dramatic increase in petty thefts.  As a precaution, it is recommended that all U.S. citizens exercise caution and avoid large public gatherings, including public screenings of World Cup matches.

For Friday’s match, the Bogota Municipal government has imposed the following mitigation measures for Bogota:

  • The “Pico & Placa” traffic restriction will be in force all day from 0600 hrs until 1930 hrs. on July 4. Note: This will mostly affect residents with cars, not tourists.
  • “Ley Seca” (no alcohol sales, possession or consumption in public) will be in effect from 1000 until 2200 hrs. on Friday, July 4.

 Regardless of the outcome, the U.S. Embassy recommends that all U.S. citizens should anticipate unruly crowds and transportation delays before and after the match. 

We strongly recommend that U.S. citizens traveling to or residing in Colombia enroll in the Department of State's Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP).  STEP gives you the latest security updates, and makes it easier for the U.S. embassy to contact you in an emergency. If you don't have Internet access, enroll directly with the nearest U.S. embassy.

Regularly monitor the State Department's website where you can find current Travel Warnings, including the Travel Warning for Colombia, Travel Alerts, and the Worldwide Caution. Read the Country Specific Information for Colombia.

For additional information, refer to "A Safe Trip Abroad" on the State Department's website.

Contact the U.S. embassy for up-to-date information on travel restrictions.  You can also call 1-888-407-4747 toll-free from within the United States and Canada, or 1-202-501-4444 from other countries. These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).  Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

You can contact the American Citizen Services Unit at the U.S. Embassy in Bogota, Colombia, via e-mail or by telephone at (571) 275-2000.  The U.S. Embassy is located at Carrera 45, # 24B-27, Bogota, D.C., Colombia and is open to the public by appointment on Monday through Thursday from 09:00 to 11:30.  You can schedule a non-emergency at the Embassy’s website.

The Embassy operates a Consular Agency in Barranquilla, Colombia which also provides assistance to U.S. citizens.  The Barranquilla Consular Agency is located at Calle 77B No. 57-141, suite 511. Hours are 8:00 a.m. to noon, Monday through Friday.  No appointment is necessary but please call ahead to (5) 353-2001 or (5) 353-2182 to make sure that the service you require can be performed at the time you plan to visit.

Security Message for U.S. Citizens – IED Incidents in Bogota

June 25, 2014

The U.S. Embassy in Bogota advises U.S. citizens residing or traveling in Bogota, Colombia of multiple recent incidents of small, low yield Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) in Bogota.  The devices have been accompanied by FARC propaganda pamphlets.
 
U.S. citizens should avoid or exercise caution in locations where large crowds have gathered.  U.S. citizens should heighten their situational awareness, vary routes of travel, and choose indoor rather than outdoor seating at restaurants.  Please review your personal security plans and monitor local news stations for updates.  Maintain a high level of vigilance and take appropriate steps to enhance your personal security and follow instructions of local authorities.

We strongly recommend that U.S. citizens traveling to or residing in Colombia enroll in the Department of State's Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP).  STEP gives you the latest security updates, and makes it easier for the U.S. embassy to contact you in an emergency.  If you don't have Internet access, enroll directly with the nearest U.S. embassy.

Regularly monitor the State Department's website where you can find current Travel Warnings, including the Travel Warning for Colombia, Travel Alerts, and the Worldwide Caution. Read the Country Specific Information for Colombia.  For additional information, refer to "A Safe Trip Abroad" on the State Department's website.

Contact the U.S. embassy for up-to-date information on travel restrictions.  You can also call 1-888-407-4747 toll-free from within the United States and Canada, or 1-202-501-4444 from other countries.  These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).  Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

You can contact the American Citizen Services Unit at the U.S. Embassy in Bogota, Colombia, via e-mail or by telephone at (571) 275-2000.  The U.S. Embassy is located at Carrera 45, # 24B-27, Bogota, D.C., Colombia and is open to the public by appointment on Monday through Thursday from 09:00 to 11:30.  You can schedule a non-emergency at the Embassy’s website.

The Embassy operates a Consular Agency in Barranquilla, Colombia which also provides assistance to U.S. citizens.  The Barranquilla Consular Agency is located at Calle 77B No. 57-141, suite 511.  Hours are 8:00 a.m. to noon, Monday through Friday.  No appointment is necessary.

May 8, 2014

The U.S. Embassy advises that the prohibition in the April 30 message below on the travel of U.S. government officials and their families (prohibiting overland from Bogota to points northeast of the city towards the city of Tunja to include La Calera) was rescinded on May 8.  As discussed in the Department of State’s Travel Warning for Colombia, U.S. government officials and their families in Colombia normally are only permitted to travel to major cities in Colombia by air. U.S. government officials and their families in Colombia must file a request to travel to any area in Colombia outside of the area is outlined by the cities of Bogota, Anolaima, Cogua, and Sesquile and outside of the area on the Highway 90 corridor that connects Cartagena, Barranquilla, and Santa Marta.  All U.S. citizens in Colombia are urged to follow these precautions and exercise extra caution outside of the aforementioned areas.

Security Message for U.S. Citizens – Update on Demonstrations & U.S. Embassy Personnel Travel Restrictions
April 30, 2014

The U.S. Embassy in Bogota advises U.S. citizens residing or traveling in Colombia of road conditions which may effect ground transportation throughout the country.  Due to ongoing demonstrations and roadblocks, the U.S. Embassy strongly advises against overland travel outside of major cities in Colombia at this time.  In addition, two demonstrations are planned in Bogota on May 1 and may affect public transportation and cause traffic delays and disruptions.  Recent road closures have also affected overland travel in other areas, particularly in Boyacá. 

U.S. government officials and their families are currently prohibited from traveling overland from Bogota to points northeast of the city towards the city of Tunja to include La Calera.

The U.S. Embassy reminds U.S. Citizens to monitor our demonstration notices at http://bogota.usembassy.gov/demonstrations.html as well as local media for developments.  As always, we advise U.S. citizens that even demonstrations intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational and escalate into violence.  You should avoid areas of demonstrations, and exercise caution if in the vicinity of any large gatherings, protests, or demonstrations.

Please review your personal security plans; remain aware of your surroundings, including local events; and monitor local news stations for updates.  Maintain a high level of vigilance and take appropriate steps to enhance your personal security and follow instructions of local authorities.

We strongly recommend that U.S. citizens traveling to or residing in Colombia enroll in the Department of State's Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) at https://step.state.gov/step.  STEP gives you the latest security updates, and makes it easier for the U.S. embassy to contact you in an emergency.  If you don't have Internet access, enroll directly with the nearest U.S. embassy.

Regularly monitor the State Department's website at http://travel.state.gov/, where you can find current Travel Warnings, including the Travel Warning for Colombia, Travel Alerts, and the Worldwide Caution.  Read the Country Specific Information for Colombia at http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_4965.html.  For additional information, refer to "A Safe Trip Abroad" on the State Department's website.

Contact the U.S. embassy for up-to-date information on travel restrictions.  You can also call 1-888-407-4747 toll-free from within the United States and Canada, or 1-202-501-4444 from other countries.  These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).  Follow us on Twitter at https://mobile.twitter.com/travelgov and Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/travelgov, and download our free Smart Traveler iPhone App at https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/smart-traveler/id442693988?mt=8 to have travel information at your fingertips.

You can contact the American Citizen Services Unit at the U.S. Embassy in Bogota, Colombia, via e-mail at acsbogota@state.gov or by telephone at (571) 275-2000.  The U.S. Embassy is located at Carrera 45, # 24B-27, Bogota, D.C., Colombia and is open to the public by appointment on Monday through Thursday from 09:00 to 11:30.  You can schedule a non-emergency appointment by visiting http://bogota.usembassy.gov/service.html.

The Embassy operates a Consular Agency in Barranquilla, Colombia which also provides assistance to U.S. citizens.  The Barranquilla Consular Agency is located at Calle 77B No. 57-141, suite 511.  Hours are 8:00 a.m. to noon, Monday through Friday.  No appointment is necessary.

Security Message for U.S. Citizens – Certain Overland Travel Restrictions for U.S. Government Officials and Their Families Lifted

September 13, 2013

This is to inform U.S. citizens traveling and residing in Colombia that the overland travel restrictions for U.S. government personnel outlined in our security message of August 29, 2013 have been lifted.  U.S. government personnel and their families are once again permitted to travel overland in the greater Bogota area, as outlined by the cities of Bogota, Anolaima, Cogua and Sesquille.  They are also now allowed to travel overland on the Highway 90 corridor that connects Cartagena, Barranquilla, and Santa Marta.  As noted in the travel warning for Colombia, U.S. government officials and their families are still required to request permission to travel outside the two areas described above. 

The U.S. Embassy reminds U.S. Citizens to monitor our demonstration notices at http://bogota.usembassy.gov/demonstrations.html as well as local media for developments.  As always, we advise U.S. citizens that even demonstrations intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational and escalate into violence.  You should avoid areas of demonstrations, and exercise caution if in the vicinity of any large gatherings, protests, or demonstrations.

Up-to-date Colombia-wide information regarding road closures is available by dialing #767 or visiting this website.

Please review your personal security plans; remain aware of your surroundings, including local events; and monitor local news stations for updates.  Maintain a high level of vigilance and take appropriate steps to enhance your personal security and follow instructions of local authorities.

We strongly recommend that U.S. citizens traveling to or residing in Colombia enroll in the Department of State's Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) at https://step.state.gov/step. STEP enrollment gives you the latest security updates, and makes it easier for the U.S. embassy or nearest U.S. consulate to contact you in an emergency.  If you don't have Internet access, enroll directly with the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.

Regularly monitor the State Department's website at http://travel.state.gov/, where you can find current Travel Warnings, including the Travel Warning for Colombia, Travel Alerts, and the Worldwide Caution.  Read the Country Specific Information for Colombia at http://travel.state.gov/content/passports/english/country/colombia.html  For additional information, refer to "A Safe Trip Abroad" on the State Department's website.

Contact the U.S. embassy or consulate for up-to-date information on travel restrictions.  You can also call 1-888-407-4747 toll-free from within the United States and Canada, or 1-202-501-4444 from other countries.  These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).

Follow us on Twitter at https://mobile.twitter.com/travelgov and Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/travelgov, and download our free Smart Traveler iPhone App at https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/smart-traveler/id442693988?mt=8 to have travel information at your fingertips.

You can contact the American Citizen Services Unit at the U.S. Embassy in Bogota, Colombia, via e-mail at acsbogota@state.gov or by telephone at (571) 275-2000.  The U.S. Embassy is located at Carrera 45, # 24B-27, Bogota, D.C., Colombia and is open to the public by appointment on Monday through Thursday from 09:00 to 11:30. You can schedule a non-emergency appointment by visiting http://bogota.usembassy.gov/service.html.

The Embassy operates a Consular Agency in Barranquilla, Colombia which also provides assistance to U.S. citizens.  The Barranquilla Consular Agency is located at Calle 77B No. 57-141, suite 511.  Hours are 8:00 a.m. to noon, Monday through Friday. No appointment is necessary.

Security Message for U.S. Citizens-Demonstrations Around the City and in the Vicinity of U.S. Embassy Bogota

September 12, 2013

The U.S. Embassy would like to inform all U.S. Citizens that there are
multiple scheduled protests today in Bogota, one of which may be anti-United States in nature:

A protest is planned for today at 5:00 p.m. in the vicinity of the U.S. Embassy.  This protest, “Colombia con Cuba”, is in support of the “Cuban 5” and may be anti-American in nature.  The protest will involve members of the Colombia con Cuba group and students from the National University. There is no indication that this will be a violent protest, nor is this protest linked to the ongoing protests that have taken place throughout the country over the past several weeks.

In addition, there are four other planned protests within Bogota today.  None of these protests are expected to be anti-American:

  • Demonstration from Teachers (FECODE), starting at 11:00 a.m. at Plaza de Toros and ending at Plaza de Bolivar.
  • Demonstration from National University students, starting at 11:00 a.m. at Avenue NQS with Calle 45, taking the Carrera 7 and ending at Plaza de Bolivar
  • Demonstration from Distrital University students, starting at 11:00 a.m. at Calle 40 with Carrera 7 and ending at Plaza de Bolivar (Students might block the Circunvalar avenue at Calle 32, from south to north).
  • Demonstration from Pedagogica University students, starting at 11:00 a.m. at Calle 72 with Carrera 11 and ending at Plaza de Bolivar. 

The U.S. Embassy reminds U.S. Citizens to monitor our demonstration notices at http://bogota.usembassy.gov/demonstrations.html as well as local media for developments. As always, we advise U.S. Citizens that even demonstrations that are meant to be peaceful can become violent and unpredictable. You should avoid them if at all possible. Be alert and aware of your surroundings and pay attention to what the local news media has to say.

You can stay in touch and get Embassy updates by checking the Embassy website, found here. You can also get global updates at the U.S. Department of State's, Bureau of Consular Affairs website where you can find the current Worldwide Caution, Travel Warnings, Travel Alerts, and Country Specific Information. If you don't have internet access, we have a call center for updates--1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the U.S. and Canada, or outside the U.S. and Canada on a regular toll line at 1-202-501-4444.

You can contact the American Citizen Services Unit at the U.S. Embassy in Bogota, Colombia, via e-mail at acsbogota@state.gov or by telephone at (571) 275-2000.

The U.S. Embassy is located at Carrera 45 # 24B-27, Bogota, D.C., Colombia and is open to the public by appointment on Monday through Thursday from 09:00 to 11:30. You can schedule a non-emergency appointment by visiting this website

The Embassy operates a Consular Agency in Baranquilla, Colombia which also provides assistance to U.S. citizens. The Baranquilla Consular Agency is located Calle 77B No. 57-141, suite 511. Hours are 8:00 a.m. to noon, Monday through Friday. No appointment is necessary.

The U.S. Embassy is Coming to You!

September 10, 2013

To further assist U.S. citizens in Colombia, the Consul General of the U.S. Embassy  and the Chief of the American Citizens Services Unit will be holding a town hall meeting in Cartagena on Saturday, September 14 to give a brief overview of the services the U.S.

Embassy provides to U.S. citizens and to discuss issues of interest to American Citizens in Colombia.   If you live in or near Cartagena and would like to attend, please RSVP to: ACSBogota@state.gov.

  • Event: Town Hall discussion for U.S. Citizens.
  • Date: Saturday, September 14, 2013.
  • Time: 10:00am.
  • Location: Hotel Caribe (Salon Fiesta) Cra 1ra No. 2-87, Bocagrande. Cartagena.

You can contact the American Citizen Services Unit at the U.S. Embassy in Bogota, Colombia, via e-mail at acsbogota@state.gov or by telephone Monday-Thursday from 2:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. at (57) 1-275-4900.

The U.S. Embassy in Bogota is open to the public for non-emergency services by appointment only.  Please review our website at http://bogota.usembassy.gov/service.html for more information about our services for U.S. citizens.

Don’t forget to sign up for the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program!  A free and fast service provided by the U.S. Government that lets U.S. citizens abroad provide useful contact information to the U.S. Embassy in case of an emergency.

Enrolled U.S citizens who provide a valid e-mail address also receive regular travel updates, messages, and alerts. To sign up or edit your information please click here.

U.S. Embassy Bogota
Security Message for U.S. Citizens – Update on Ongoing Demonstrations & Road Closures

August 29, 2013

Due to ongoing demonstrations and roadblocks, the U.S. Embassy strongly advises against overland travel outside of major cities in Colombia.  U.S. government officials and their families are currently prohibited from travelling overland from Bogota to other parts of the country (air travel policy to/from Bogota has not changed). U.S. government officials and their families are also currently prohibited from travelling overland between Cartagena and Barranquilla.

Road closures have particularly impacted overland travel in Boyacá, Cundinamarca, Putumayo, Cauca, Huila, Nariño, and Risaralda.  Ongoing demonstrations have closed major and minor roads and caused shortages of consumer goods in some cities in these areas.

A large demonstration planned for Bogota on August 29, is expected to impact public transportation and cause traffic delays and disruptions.  Local authorities have closed public schools on August 29, and most private schools have followed suit.

The U.S. Embassy reminds U.S. Citizens to monitor our demonstration notices at http://bogota.usembassy.gov/demonstrations.html as well as local media for developments.  As always, we advise U.S. citizens that even demonstrations intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational and escalate into violence.  You should avoid areas of demonstrations, and exercise caution if in the vicinity of any large gatherings, protests, or demonstrations.

Up-to-date Colombia-wide information regarding road closures is available by dialing #767 or visiting this page.

Please review your personal security plans; remain aware of your surroundings, including local events; and monitor local news stations for updates.  Maintain a high level of vigilance and take appropriate steps to enhance your personal security and follow instructions of local authorities.

We strongly recommend that U.S. citizens traveling to or residing in Colombia enroll in the Department of State's Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) at https://step.state.gov/step.

STEP enrollment gives you the latest security updates, and makes it easier for the U.S. embassy or nearest U.S. consulate to contact you in an emergency.  If you don't have Internet access, enroll directly with the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.

Regularly monitor the State Department's website at http://travel.state.gov/, where you can find current Travel Warnings, including the Travel Warning for Colombia, Travel Alerts, and the Worldwide Caution.

Read the Country Specific Information for Colombia at http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_4965.html. For additional information, refer to "A Safe Trip Abroad" on the State Department's website.

Contact the U.S. embassy or consulate for up-to-date information on travel restrictions.  You can also call 1-888-407-4747 toll-free from within the United States and Canada, or 1-202-501-4444 from other countries. 

These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays). 

Follow us on Twitter at https://mobile.twitter.com/travelgov and Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/travelgov, and download our free Smart Traveler iPhone App at https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/smart-traveler/id442693988?mt=8 to have travel information at your fingertips.

You can contact the American Citizen Services Unit at the U.S. Embassy in Bogota, Colombia, via e-mail at acsbogota@state.gov or by telephone at (571) 275-2000.

The U.S. Embassy is located at Carrera 45, # 24B-27, Bogota, D.C., Colombia and is open to the public by appointment on Monday through Thursday from 09:00 to 11:30.  You can schedule a non-emergency appointment by visiting http://bogota.usembassy.gov/service.html.

The Embassy operates a Consular Agency in Baranquilla, Colombia which also provides assistance to U.S. citizens.  The Baranquilla Consular Agency is located at Calle 77B No. 57-141, suite 511.  Hours are 8:00 a.m. to noon, Monday through Friday. No appointment is necessary. 

U.S. Embassy Bogota
Security Message for U.S. Citizens - Ongoing Protests & Road Closures

August 26, 2013

Due to ongoing demonstrations and roadblocks currently affecting highway traffic, the U.S. Embassy strongly advises against overland travel outside of major cities in Colombia.  Road closures have particularly impacted overland travel in Boyacá, Cundinamarca, Putumayo, Cauca, Huila, Nariño, and Risaralda.

These demonstrations have caused traffic delays and shortages of some consumer goods in a few smaller heavily-impacted cities.  There have also been several violent incidents associated with the demonstrations, including reports of a Colombian National Police officer shot while attempting to clear a road in Zipaquira and three vehicles and one toll booth set on fire on the road between Bogota and Tunja. 

Up-to-date Colombia-wide information regarding road closures is available by dialing #767 or visiting this page.

Please review your personal security plans; remain aware of your surroundings, including local events; and monitor local news stations for updates.  Maintain a high level of vigilance and take appropriate steps to enhance your personal security and follow instructions of local authorities.

As always, we advise U.S. Citizens that even demonstrations intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational and escalate into violence.  You should avoid areas of demonstrations, and exercise caution if in the vicinity of any large gatherings, protests, or demonstrations.

We strongly recommend that U.S. citizens traveling to or residing in Colombia enroll in the Department of State's Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) at https://step.state.gov/step.  STEP enrollment gives you the latest security updates, and makes it easier for the U.S. embassy or nearest U.S. consulate to contact you in an emergency.  If you don't have Internet access, enroll directly with the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.

Regularly monitor the State Department's website at http://travel.state.gov/, where you can find current Travel Warnings, including the Travel Warning for Colombia, Travel Alerts, and the Worldwide Caution.  Read the Country Specific Information for Colombia at http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_4965.html.  For additional information, refer to "A Safe Trip Abroad" on the State Department's website.

Contact the U.S. embassy or consulate for up-to-date information on travel restrictions.  You can also call 1-888-407-4747 toll-free from within the United States and Canada, or 1-202-501-4444 from other countries.  These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).

Follow us on Twitter at https://mobile.twitter.com/travelgov and Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/travelgov, and download our free Smart Traveler iPhone App at https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/smart-traveler/id442693988?mt=8 to have travel information at your fingertips.

 You can contact the American Citizen Services Unit at the U.S. Embassy in Bogota, Colombia, via e-mail at acsbogota@state.gov or by telephone at (571) 275-2000.  The U.S. Embassy is located at Carrera 45, # 24B-27, Bogota, D.C., Colombia and is open to the public by appointment on Monday through Thursday from 09:00 to 11:30. You can schedule a non-emergency appointment by visiting this website.

The Embassy operates a Consular Agency in Baranquilla, Colombia which also provides assistance to U.S. citizens. The Baranquilla Consular Agency is located Calle 77B No. 57-141, suite 511.  Hours are 8:00 a.m. to noon, Monday through Friday.  No appointment is necessary.

May 2, 2013.

The U.S. Embassy is Coming to You!

To further assist U.S. citizens in Colombia, the Consul General of the U.S. Embassy will be holding a town hall meeting in Medellin on Wednesday, May 8th to give a brief overview of the services the U.S. Embassy provides to U.S. citizens and to discuss issues of interest to American Citizens in Medellin.   If you live in or near Medellin and would like to attend, please RSVP to: ACSBogota@state.gov.

Event: Town Hall discussion for U.S. Citizens

Date: Wednesday, May 8th

Time: 6:00pm

Location: Colombo Americano Medellin – Sede Centro
Carrera 45, No. 53-24
Tel: 4-513-4444

You can contact the American Citizen Services Unit at the U.S. Embassy in Bogota, Colombia, via e-mail at acsbogota@state.gov or by telephone Monday-Thursday from 2:00 p.m. ¬– 4:00 p.m. at (57) 1-275-4900. The U.S. Embassy in Bogota is open to the public for non-emergency services by appointment only.

Don’t forget to sign up for the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program!  A free and fast service provided by the U.S. Government that lets U.S. citizens abroad provide useful contact information to the U.S. Embassy in case of an emergency.

Enrolled U.S citizens who provide a valid e-mail address also receive regular travel updates, messages, and alerts. To sign up or edit your information please click here. 

April 8, 2013.

The U.S. Embassy is Coming to You!

To further assist U.S. citizens in Colombia, the U.S. Embassy will be visiting Medellin on Friday, April 12th to accept passport and report of birth applications and perform notary services. Please be aware that these are the only services that will be provided on that day, and we will not be able to respond to visa questions or Social Security questions.   We also are unable to apostille documents.

If you live in or near Medellin and wish to take advantage of this program, please refer to the schedule below.  Please review the information on the specific requirements, and forms on our website:  http://bogota.usembassy.gov/service.html by going to the webpage for the appropriate service.

You MUST make an appointment for the appropriate service online, or you will NOT be attended. Appointments can only be scheduled on the U.S. Embassy website

We have a limited number of appointments on April 12th, and we apologize in advance if we are unable to accept your case that day.  If you are unable to attend this event, you will generally need to travel to Bogota to apply for a consular service.

Event: American Citizen Services in Medellin: Passports, Notarials, and Consular Reports of Birth Abroad

Date: Friday, April 12, 2013

Location: Cámara de Comercio Colombo Americana de Medellin
Calle 4 Sur # 43A-195, Oficina 163D,
Centro Ejecutivo, El Poblado, Medellín
PBX: (57) (4) 268-7491
http://www.amchamedellin.com/

Hours:           
8:00 am to 12:00 pm: Passports (adults and children), Notary Services, Registration of Births Abroad

1:30 pm to 5:00 pm: Passports (adults and children), Notary Services, Registration of Births Abroad

                                              IMPORTANT

***Payment can ONLY be made by cashier’s check (“cheques de gerencia”)***

***Checks must be made out to “Embajada Americana NIT 800.090.823-1***

***Exact payment must be in COLOMBIAN PESOS***
 
Fees:

Notary Services: $92,500 COP per notary signature 
Passport (ADULT RENEWAL): $203,500 COP
Passport (ADULT FIRST TIME): $249,750 COP
*note: this fee is charged even if you had a passport as a child*
Passport (CHILD, 15 yrs and under): $194,250 COP
Extra Pages: $151,700 COP

Delivery: A representative for Domesa will be available to schedule return delivery services at an additional cost.

*Again, please remember to bring all required forms as listed on the U.S. Embassy website*

You can contact the American Citizen Services Unit at the U.S. Embassy in Bogota, Colombia, via e-mail at acsbogota@state.gov or by telephone at (57) 1-275-4900. The U.S. Embassy in Bogota is open to the public for non-emergency services by appointment only.

Don’t forget to sign up for the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program! A free and fast service provided by the U.S. Government that lets U.S. citizens abroad provide useful contact information to the U.S. Embassy in case of an emergency.

Enrolled U.S citizens who provide a valid e-mail address also receive regular travel updates, messages, and alerts. To sign up or edit your information please visit the following website: https://step.state.gov/step/.

September 4, 2012

According to local press reports, the Federacion Colombiana de Educadores is planning a protest tomorrow.  The protest is planned to commence at 10 a.m. and have a total of four staging points from which the protestors will march to the Plaza de Bolivar.  The meeting points are as follows:

  1.  Carrera 10 with  Calle 1 – They will travel on Carrera 10 towards Avenida Jimenez, reach 7th  and end at Plaza de Bolivar.
  2. Estacion de La Sabana Calle 13 with Carrera 18 – They will travel on Calle 13, reach Avenida Jimenez and then 7th reaching Plaza Bolivar.
  3. Parque Nacional – This group will travel to Calle 34, then will go on Calle 13 until reaching Calle 24, they will continue to 7th and end at Plaza Bolivar.
  4. Carrera 30 with Calle 45 – They will go on Calle 45 until reaching 7th and then will continue to Plaza Bolivar.

Students from the Distrital, Nacional and Pedagogica Universities are also expected to participate.  The U.S. Embassy advises all U.S. Citizens to avoid all locations where these protests are scheduled to take place.  Additional information will be provided as it becomes available.

U.S. citizens are reminded to avoid demonstrations, if at all possible, as even demonstrations meant to be peaceful can sometimes become violent and unpredictable.

August 24, 2012

This coming Sunday August 26, 2012, several streets of Bogotá will be closed due to the 34th “Solidarity walk for Colombia” (marcha de Solidaridad por Colombia) http://www.movilidadbogota.gov.co/?pag=1201
 
The walk will start at 0800 hours at Parque Nacional, then will take Carrera 7 to the north to 72nd Street. Then the walk will continue to Carrera 11, then will take Calle 67 and Carrera 13 and will connect with Calle 63, finishing at Carrrea 50 x 63.
 
U.S. citizens are reminded to avoid demonstrations, if at all possible, as even demonstrations meant to be peaceful can sometimes become violent and unpredictable.

The Ciclovia will be suspended on Carrera 7 between Calle 28 and Calle 45.

August 21, 2012
 
 
All American citizens are invited to a Townhall meeting in Leticia on Saturday, August 25, 2012 at the Hotel Waira in Leticia, Colombia.  The purpose of the event is to briefly outline the various services provided by the consular section.  There will also be an opportunity to answer some general questions from the audience.   The details of the event are as below:
 
Saturday, August 25, 2012
10:00 – 11:00
Hotel Waira
Carrera 10, No. 7-36
Leticia, Amazonas
Tel:  (098) 592-4428, 592-5946
 
Please arrive at least 30 minutes before the start time.  You must bring your passport with you to the event or you will not be permitted to attend.  If you have a non-citizen family member, please bring his or her passport and/or Colombian ID card
 
 
La Embajada de los Estados Unidos en Bogotá, tiene el gusto de invitar a todos los Ciudadanos Americanos a una reunión que se llevará a cabo el sábado 25 de agosto en el Hotel Waira en Leticia, Colombia.  El propósito de este evento es el de presentar un breve resumen de los servicios que proporciona la Sección Consular. También habrá oportunidad para contestar  preguntas generales del público.  A continuación encontrará los detalles sobre la reunión
 
Sabado, 25 de agosto de 2012
10:00 – 11:00
Hotel Waira
Carrera 10, No. 7-36
Leticia, Amazonas
Tel:  (098) 592-4428, 592-5946

Por favor llegar 30 minutos antes del evento. Debe presentar su pasaporte Americano para ingresar al evento, de lo contrario no podrá asistir. Las personas que tengan familiares que no sean ciudadanos Americanos, por favor traer su pasaporte Colombiano o cédula de ciudadanía.

You can contact the American Citizen Services Unit at the U.S. Embassy in Bogota, Colombia, via e-mail at acsbogota@state.gov or by telephone at (57) 1-275-2000.  The U.S. Embassy in Bogota is open to the public for non-emergency services by appointment only.

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