SWAZILAND

Country Description: Swaziland is a small developing nation in southern Africa. Facilities for tourism are available.

Passport and/or Visa Requirements: Travelers should obtain the latest information and details from the Embassy of the Kingdom of Swaziland, 3400 International Drive, N.W., Suite 3M, Washington, D.C., 20004, Telephone (202) 362-6683. Overseas inquiries should be made to the nearest Swaziland embassy or consulate.

Medical Facilities: Medical facilities are limited. Doctors and hospitals often expect immediate cash payment for health services. U.S. medical insurance is not always valid outside the United States. The Medicare/Medicaid program does not provide for payment of medical services outside the United States. In some cases, supplemental medical insurance with specific overseas and medical evacuation coverage has proven useful. For additional health information, travelers can contact the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's international travelers hotline at (404) 332-4559.

Travel Warnings, Advisories and Areas of Instability: In the last two years mass stay-aways (strikes) have resulted from a long-simmering dispute between the government and the labor movement. Virtually all commercial services, including airports, close down for several days at a time. These labor actions are rare, however further labor/political unrest is possible at any time. The potential for violence exists when the labor actions are in progress, particularly in Mbabane and in the largest city, Manzini, as police and demonstrators often clash in the streets.

Travel Warnings, Advisories and Areas of Instability: Petty street crime, primarily theft of money and personal property, occurs with some frequency. Occasional armed carjackings of automobiles have taken place in Manzini, and, less frequently, in Mbabane and outlying areas of Swaziland. The loss or theft abroad of a U.S. passport should be reported immediately to local police and to the U.S. Embassy. The pamphlets "A Safe Trip Abroad" and "Tips for Travelers to Sub-Saharan Africa" provide useful information on protecting personal security while traveling abroad and on travel in the region in general. Both are available from the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, D.C. 20402.

Road Safety/Automobile Travel: Swaziland has an excellent network of national roads, and secondary roads are quite good. Traffic circulates on the left in Swaziland rather than on the right as in the United States.

Drug Penalties: U.S. citizens are subject to the laws of the country in which they are traveling. Penalties for possession, use or trafficking in illegal drugs are strict, and convicted offenders can expect jail sentences and fines.

Aviation Oversight: As a result of an assessment conducted by the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in November 1994, the FAA has found the Government of Swaziland's Civil Aviation authority to not be in compliance with international aviation safety standards for oversight of Swaziland's air carrier operations. Operations to the U.S. by Swaziland's air carriers are not permitted unless they arrange to have their flights conducted by a carrier from a country meeting international aviation safety standards. For further information, travelers may contact the Department of Transportation at 1-800-322-7873.

Embassy Location/Registration: U.S. citizens are encouraged to register at the U.S. Embassy in Mbabane, and to obtain updated information on travel and security in Swaziland. The U.S. Embassy is located in the Central Bank Building on Warner Street in the capital city of Mbabane. The mailing address is Box 199, Mbabane, Swaziland. The Embassy telephone number is (268) 46441. The fax number is (268) 45959.

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