Venezuela Travel Warning
Issued by US Department of State
Dec 11, 2002
This Travel Warning is being issued to alert U.S. citizens to the
deteriorating political and security situation in Venezuela and accompanying
severe shortages of goods and services. In addition, this Travel Warning
alerts U.S. citizens that the Department of State has authorized the
voluntary departure of eligible family members and non-emergency personnel
of the U.S. Embassy in Venezuela. U.S. citizens are warned to defer all
travel to Venezuela at this time, and those already in Venezuela are urged
to consider departing. This replaces the Travel Warning of December 6,
2002, and expires on March 5, 2003.
On December 10, 2002, the Department of State authorized the voluntary
departure of eligible family members and non-emergency personnel of the U.S.
Embassy in Venezuela due to the deteriorating political and security
situation and the severe shortages of fuel and food supplies. Opponents of
President Chavez began a general strike on December 2. Resulting conflicts
have led to some deaths and injuries. There is a potential for further
violence. This strike has crippled the operations of Venezuelan state oil
company PDVSA and led to shortages and outages of gasoline and other fuels.
Key goods and services have been dramatically affected both by the strike
and transportation difficulties. Fuel and basic food supplies are critically
low, and ground transportation throughout the country is operating on a very
limited basis. Local airline services have been suspended, and
international flights have been scaled back.
The State Department warns U.S. citizens to defer all travel to Venezuela at
this time. U.S. citizens in Venezuela should look closely at their own
security situation and consider departing the country.
U.S. Consular personnel remain available to provide emergency information
and services to American citizens and will provide assistance to any
Americans who need help departing the country. In case of an emergency or
for the latest security information, the U.S. Embassy can be reached at
For further information, please see the latest Consular Information Sheet
for Venezuela and the latest Worldwide Caution that are available on the
Bureau of Consular Affairs Internet home page at .