COUNTRY DESCRIPTION: Bermuda is a British overseas territory with a stable democracy and developed economy. Tourist facilities are widely available. Read the Department of State’s Fact Sheet on Bermuda for additional information.
SMART TRAVELER ENROLLMENT PROGRAM(STEP) / EMBASSY LOCATION: If you are going to live in or visit Bermuda, please take the time to tell our Consulate about your trip. If you enroll, we can keep you up to date with important safety and security announcements. It will also help your friends and family get in touch with you in an emergency. Here’s the link to the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program.
American Consulate General Hamilton
16 Middle Road
Devonshire DV 03
Telephone: (441) 295-1342
Emergency after-hours telephone: (441) 335-3828
Facsimile: (441) 295-1592
ENTRY / EXIT REQUIREMENTS FOR U.S. CITIZENS: All persons travelling between the United States and Bermuda are required to present a passport to enter Bermuda or re-enter the United States. Travellers with questions concerning travel to Bermuda may contact the British Embassy in Washington, DC or any of the British Consulate General offices across the United States. Visit the British Embassy website for the most current visa information.
HIV/AIDS restrictions. The U.S. Department of State is unaware of any HIV/AIDS entry restrictions for visitors to or foreign residents of Bermuda.
Information about dual nationality or the prevention of international child abduction can be found on our website. For further information about customs regulations, please read our Customs Information page.
THREATS TO SAFETY AND SECURITY: Stay up to date by:
CRIME: By comparison to the United States, Bermuda has a low to moderate crime rate. Recent crime statistics are available at the official website of the Bermuda Police Service. Valuables left unattended in public areas, in unsecured hotel rooms, or on rental motorbikes are vulnerable to theft. Criminals have been known to target visitors on motorbikes and at popular tourist attractions, and purse snatchings (perpetrated by thieves riding motorbikes) and muggings have occurred in the past. The back streets of the City of Hamilton have been the setting for nighttime assaults, particularly at night after the bars close. Travelers should exercise caution when walking after dark or visiting out-of-the-way places on the island as they can be vulnerable to theft and assault, and because narrow and dark roadways can contribute to accidents.
Travelers should note an increase in gang presence and illegal drug activity in Bermuda. There have been no reports of gang violence targeted towards visitors to Bermuda, although gunfire between gang members has occurred throughout the island.
Don’t buy counterfeit and pirated goods, even if they are widely available. Not only are the bootlegs illegal in the United States, if you purchase them you may also be breaking local law.
VICTIMS OF CRIME: If you or someone you know becomes the victim of a crime abroad, you should contact the local police and the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate. We can:
Although Bermuda does not have a formalized Victims of Crime Program, there is a Criminal Injuries Compensation Board c/o The Supreme Court, 113 Front Street, Hamilton HM 12, Bermuda. Telephone (441) 292-1350. Facsimilie (441) 292-2268.
As in the United States, the emergency line in Bermuda is “911.”
Please see our information on victims of crime, including possible victim compensation programs in the United States.
CRIMINAL PENALTIES: While you are traveling in Bermuda, you are subject to its laws even if you are a U.S. citizen. Foreign laws and legal systems can be vastly different than our own. These criminal penalties will vary from country to country. There are also some things that might be legal in the country you visit, but still illegal in the United States, and you can be prosecuted under U.S. law if you buy pirated goods. Engaging in sexual conduct with children or using or disseminating child pornography in a foreign country is a crime prosecutable in the United States. If you break local laws in Bermuda, your U.S. passport won’t help you avoid arrest or prosecution. It’s very important to know what’s legal and what’s not where you are going.
Persons violating Bermuda’s laws, even unknowingly, may be expelled, arrested, or imprisoned. Having a prescription for an illegal drug in Bermuda, such as marijuana, will not protect you from prosecution for possession of that illegal drug. Bermuda Customs routinely boards visiting cruise ships with drug sniffing dogs and will arrest persons found to have any illegal drugs in their cabin. Penalties for possessing, using, or trafficking in illegal drugs in Bermuda are severe, and convicted offenders can expect jail sentences and/or heavy fines.
If you are arrested in Bermuda, authorities of Bermuda are required to notifythe U.S. Consulate of your arrest. If you are concerned the Department of State may not be aware of your situation, you should request the police or prison officials to notify the U.S. Consulate of your arrest.
SPECIAL CIRCUMSTANCES: The Department of State warns United States citizens against taking any type of firearm, ammunition or component of a firearm into Bermuda. The Bermuda Government strictly enforces its laws restricting the entry of weapons and ammunition. Entering Bermuda with a firearm, some bladed instruments, an ammunition magazine, or even a single round of ammunition is illegal, even if the weapon or ammunition is taken into the country unintentionally. Permission to import or own a gun in Bermuda must be sought in advance from the Bermuda Police Service. Any privately owned firearms must be secured at Bermuda Police Headquarters. Violations may result in arrest, convictions, and potentionally long prison sentences. Pepper sprays and stun guns are considered dangerous weapons in Bermuda and are illegal.
Accessibility: Individuals with disabilities may find accessibility and accommodation very different from what is available in the United States. Bermuda does not currently have legislation on access to transportation, communication, and public buildings for persons with disabilities. Very few hotels would be considered fully compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). We recommend you always check with the hotel or property where you will be staying to see if their dimensions for rooms, doors, and bathrooms are ADA-compliant. Outside of the City of Hamilton, sidewalks are generally unavailable or not suitable for wheelchairs. Public ferries are handicap accessible, as are some of the public buses, but most bus stops are not. Handicap accessible taxis are available for hire in Bermuda.
MEDICAL FACILITIES AND HEALTH INFORMATION: Adequate medical care is available for routine procedures, though extremely expensive. The hospital performs general surgery and has an emergency room and intensive care unit. Serious or complex medical programs will likely require medical evacuation to the United States. Most Bermudian health care providers including the local hospital do not accept overseas insurance and will expect payment at the time of service.
You can find good information on vaccinations and other health precautions, on the CDC website. For information about outbreaks of infectious diseases abroad, consult the World Health Organization (WHO) website. The WHO website also contains additional health information for travelers, including detailed country-specific health information.
MEDICAL INSURANCE: You can’t assume your insurance will go with you when you travel. It’s very important to find out BEFORE you leave whether or not your medical insurance will cover you overseas. You need to ask your insurance company two questions:
In Bermuda, doctors and hospitals expect payment in cash at the time of service. Your regular U.S. health insurance may not cover doctors’ and hospital visits in other countries. If your policy doesn’t go with you when you travel, it’s a very good idea to take out another one for your trip. For more information, please see our medical insurance overseas page.
TRAFFIC SAFETY AND ROAD CONDITIONS: While in Bermuda you will encounter road conditions that differ significantly from those in the United States. Traffic in Bermuda moves on the left side and the roads are very narrow, often with no defined shoulder. The maximum speed in the city of Hamilton is 25 kph (15 mph) and 35 kph (21 mph) on the rest of the island. Under Bermudian law, non residents are not allowed to own, rent or drive four-wheeled vehicles. Non residents must rely on taxis, the local bus system, or rented motorbikes. Traffic is moderate. Road accidents – particularly involving motorbikes – are common and can result in serious injuries or death.
Rental motorbikes are readily available, and the required helmet is provided. However, visitors should carefully consider the significant risks of riding a motorbike. Motorbikes provide the greatest road peril in Bermuda; local operators tend to abuse the speed limit and will often pass on the left or right side with no warning. Those unfamiliar with driving on the left side are likely to find the roundabouts and regulations for yielding at junctions confusing and dangerous. In addition, vehicles often stop on the side of the road, blocking one lane of traffic. Main roads, while generally in good condition, are extremely narrow and tend to be bordered by heavy vegetation or stone walls. Taxis are readily available. The local bus system serves the length of the island and stops close to most beaches, hotels, the downtown shopping area, and other points of interest. In addition, water ferry service to a variety of stops around the island is available seven days a week and is a very safe and enjoyable mode of transportation.
For specific information concerning Bermuda’s drivers permits, vehicle inspection, road tax and mandatory insurance, please contact the Bermuda Department of Tourism offices at 675 Third Avenue, 20th Floor, New York, NY 10017 Tel: (800)_223-6106.
Please refer to our Road Safety page for more information.
AVIATION SAFETY OVERSIGHT: The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has assessed the government of Bermuda’s Civil Aviation Authority as being in compliance with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) aviation safety standards for oversight of Bermuda’s air carrier operations. Further information may be found on the FAA’s safety assessment page.
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This replaces the Country Specific Information for Bermuda dated March 7, 2011 to update the sections on Crime, Special Circumstances, and Traffic Safety And Road Conditions.