SAFETY TIPS

SAFETY AND SECURITY

MOUNT CHAMBI NATIONAL PARK

There is a threat of terrorist attacks and kidnapping in the area of Mount Chambi National Park in Kasserine Governorate. Ongoing Tunisian military operations against suspected terrorists occur regularly in the area. The use of improvised explosive devices (IEDs) has been reported in the area.

Regularly review your security practices and remain alert to the changing situation.

BORDER AREAS WITH ALGERIA AND LIBYA

There is an ongoing threat of terrorist attacks and kidnapping along the border with Algeria, especially in the mountainous areas in the northern half of Tunisia. The use of IEDs has been reported in the area.

Due to the flow of suspected terrorist cells and militants, as well as contraband,  between Tunisia and neighbouring countries, the Tunisian government has increased its security presence at borders with Algeria and Libya. However, the threat of cross-border terrorist activity remains and attacks have targeted security forces.

Tunisian security forces regularly conduct counter-terrorism operations in the border areas of the governorates of Jendouba, Kasserine and Kef.

The border between Tunisia and Libya may close with little or no notice and for an unspecified period of time.

TUNISIA’S GREATER SOUTH AREA

The deterioration in the security situation in neighbouring Libya has resulted in greater volatility in southern Tunisia, particularly in remote areas. Remote areas, including the area south of Jebil National Park and desert areas, can have unreliable cellphone reception and few resources for assistance.

TERRORISM

There is a threat of terrorism. Terrorist attacks have occurred throughout Tunisia. Since 2015, tourist resorts and attractions, as well as Tunisian military and state institutions have been targeted, and further attacks cannot be ruled out. On June 27, 2019, two suicide bombings occurred in downtown Tunis, killing two persons and injuring several others. Other parts of the country are also at risk of terrorist attacks.

Targets could include:

  • government buildings, including schools
  • places of worship
  • airports and other transportation hubs and networks
  • public areas such as tourist attractions, restaurants, bars, coffee shops, shopping centres, markets, hotels and other sites frequented by foreigners
  • sports events
  • cultural festivals

Always be aware of your surroundings when in public places.

A number of suspected terrorists and arms traffickers have been captured in various regions of the country, including the capital, Tunis. This indicates that extremist elements are present and that instability in Libya and elsewhere in the Middle East and North Africa continues to pose a general threat to the security of foreigners, religious sites, foreign institutions and tourist facilities in Tunisia. Security forces are on a high state of alert and carry out anti-terrorism operations across the country to prevent attacks.

A state of emergency remains in effect since 2015 following a deadly bus bombing targeting National Guard officers in downtown Tunis. The state of emergency was last extended in July 2019 and remains in effect until further notice. National and regional curfews, which are enforced by the police, may be imposed without advance warning.

Maintain a high level of vigilance at all times. Regularly review your security practices and remain alert to the changing situation.

KIDNAPPING

Kidnappings have occurred, along border areas.  Kidnappings are not numerous and do not usually target foreigners but cannot be ruled out.  

DEMONSTRATIONS AND CIVIL UNREST

Political, social and economic tensions have caused civil unrest throughout the country, but mostly occur in central and southern Tunisia and in parts of Tunis. Some demonstrations and labour strikes have led to roadblocks, burning tires and have deteriorated into violent clashes between the police and demonstrators, resulting in considerable property damage, injuries and deaths.

  • Avoid areas where demonstrations and large gatherings are taking place or could occur as local conditions may change rapidly
  • Follow the instructions of local authorities
  • Monitor local media for information on ongoing demonstrations

More about mass gatherings (large-scale events)

CRIME

Street crime, including theft, pickpocketing, purse snatching and scams, has been much more frequent in Tunisia since the 2011 revolution.

“Drive-by” thefts by individuals on scooters and motorcycles have occurred in tourist areas.

WOMEN’S SAFETY

Women travelling alone may be subject to certain forms of harassment and verbal abuse. Be aware that Tunisian men have targeted Canadian women for fraudulent marriages (see Fraud).

Safe travel guide for women

FRAUD

Young Tunisian men have pursued marriage with older Canadian women in coastal resorts, for financial gain or in order to gain entry to Canada.

More about overseas fraud

ROAD SAFETY

Driving can be dangerous, particularly after dark.

Traffic signs and signals are routinely ignored.

Many roads in urban and rural areas don’t have adequate road lighting.

When walking, be especially cautious as cars don’t routinely stop at pedestrian crosswalks or stoplights.

Motorists sometimes drive on the wrong side of the road and ignore lane markings.

Bicycles, mopeds and motorcycles often operate without sufficient lights and reflectors, and regularly dart in and out of traffic.

Sidewalks are not consistently present and pedestrians are sometimes forced to walk on the street.

Pedestrians often cross the road while dodging traffic and ignore vehicles.

Police officers frequently stop cars for inspection, especially rental cars.

PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION

Taxis are available but may be scarce in major cities at peak hours. Most taxis are equipped with fare meters, which should be activated for all trips. Few taxis have functioning seatbelts.  

Buses are crowded. Petty crime occurs in buses.

Rail service is generally safe. Petty crime occurs on city and inter-city trains. Be extremely vigilant with your belongings at all times.

AIR TRAVEL

We do not make assessments on the compliance of foreign domestic airlines with international safety standards.

General information about foreign domestic airlines

GENERAL SAFETY INFORMATION

Avoid the crowds that can form at soccer matches, as such events have led to incidents of violence.

You should be accompanied by a guide on your travels or use a guide to help plan your travel.