RomaniaOfficial Name: Romania
Must be valid at time of entry.
BLANK PASSPORT PAGES:
One page required for entry stamp.
TOURIST VISA REQUIRED:
Not required for stays under 90 days within six months.
CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR ENTRY:
10,000 Euros or equivalent must be declared upon entry.
CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR EXIT:
10,000 Euros or equivalent must be declared upon exit.
Embassies and Consulates
B-dul, Dr. Liviu Librescu Nr. 4-6,
Sector 1, Bucharest
Telephone: +(40) (21) 200-3300 and/or +(40) (21) 270-6000
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +(40) (21) 200-3433
Fax: +(40) (21) 200-3578
Romania is a republic and a member of both NATO and the European Union. The country has a market-oriented economy with developed tourist facilities in the capital, Bucharest, and facilities of varying quality throughout the rest of the country. Read the Department of State’s Fact Sheet on U.S.-Romania relations.
Entry, Exit & Visa Requirements
You must have a valid passport to enter Romania. U.S. citizen visitors are granted 90 days of stay without a visa within a given six-month period. For stays longer than 90 days, you must obtain an extension of stay from the Romanian Immigration Office in the area of your residence. If you stay longer than 90 days, you will need an exit visa. We do not recommend “extending” the 90-day period by traveling to another country for a short period and then returning to Romania; people attempting this are often denied re-entry to Romania. Visit the Embassy of Romania website for the most current visa information, or contact the Romanian Embassy at 1607 23rd St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20008, telephone number (202) 232-4747, or one of Romania’s consulates in Los Angeles, Chicago, or New York.
U.S.-Romanian citizens in Romania are subject to the requirements and responsibilities of Romanian law. Romanian immigration officials may require U.S. minors holding Romanian citizenship to provide written consent from both of their parents to exit Romania. For more information about additional requirements for Romanian citizens, check with the Inspectorate for Immigration and the Romanian Border Police.
Foreigners are required to carry identification documents at all times. U.S. citizens who obtain a temporary or permanent residence permit must present the document upon the request of any “competent authorities.” Foreigners who do not have a residence permit should present their passports. The Embassy recommends carrying a copy of the relevant document with you at all times.
The U.S. Department of State is unaware of any HIV/AIDS entry restrictions for visitors to or foreign residents of Romania.
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.
Safety and Security
Terrorist incidents are rare in Romania. Police oversight is routinely provided in the event of public demonstrations. The financial crisis and resulting austerity measures have increased the occurrences of strikes and public demonstrations in Romania, especially in Bucharest. To date, protests have remained peaceful. However, 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 reports. Information on specific demonstrations can be found on the Embassy website’s Demonstration page.
To stay connected:
- Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program so we can keep you up to date with important safety and security announcements.
- Follow the Bureau of Consular Affairs on Twitter and Facebook.
- Bookmark the Bureau of Consular Affairs website, which contains the current Travel Warnings and Travel Alerts as well as the Worldwide Caution.
- Follow the U.S. Embassy in Romania on Facebook and visiting the Embassy’s website.
- In the event of an emergency, contact us at 1-888-407-4747 toll-free within the United States and Canada, or via a regular toll line, 1-202-501-4444, from other countries.
- Take some time before traveling to consider your personal security and checking for useful tips for traveling safely abroad
CRIME: While most crimes in Romania are nonviolent, violent crime does occur, especially at nightclubs and bars. While reports of sexual assault are uncommon, you should be vigilant, especially at night and in situations involving alcohol. Although racial prejudice exists in Romania, especially toward those who appear to be Roma, hate crimes are rare.
Crimes against tourists, such as robbery, pick pocketing, and confidence schemes remain problematic. Organized groups of thieves and pickpockets, sometimes including minors, operate in train stations, trains, subways, and buses in major cities. A number of thefts and assaults have occurred on overnight trains, including thefts from passengers in closed compartments. The U.S. Embassy recommends traveling in the highest class available and with at least one other person. Avoid leaving your personal belongings unattended; stow them securely out of sight.
Romania is largely a "cash-only" economy. Credit card and internet fraud remain among the most common crimes affecting foreigners in Romania. While an increasing number of businesses accept credit cards, you may wish to use cash for goods and services rendered due to the risk of credit card fraud. Vendors, including restaurant staff, have been known to misuse credit card information by making illegal purchases on a customer's account. There are an increasing number of Automatic Teller Machines (ATMs) located throughout major cities, and sophisticated identity theft rings target them. Try to use ATMs located inside banks and check for any evidence of tampering before use. Be cautious when using publicly available internet terminals, such as in internet cafes, as sensitive personal information, account passwords, etc. may be compromised.
Stay alert to sophisticated money exchange schemes targeting travelers. Some involve individuals posing as plainclothes policemen who approach you, flashing a badge, and asking for your passport and wallet. If presented with a situation like this, you should insist on the presence of uniformed police officers and request that any problem be resolved at a police station.
You should be cautious about entering into contracts with Romanian groups and/or organizations without Romanian legal assistance. The U.S. Embassy recommends that all contracts entered into by foreigners are reviewed by a Romanian attorney. The Romanian legal system is difficult for foreigners to navigate, making the assistance of a local attorney nearly essential.
Scam artists commonly target U.S. citizens using internet chat rooms or personal advertisements. They generally identify themselves as young Romanian women and develop a "relationship" with their victims over time. Requests for money may not begin for six months or longer until a fictional child becomes ill, a job is lost, or a business needs start-up cash. While numerous variations of this scam exist, the ultimate goal is to extort money. If you believe you may have fallen victim to this kind of scam, contact American Citizens Services at the U.S. Embassy. Romanian authorities may be reluctant to prosecute these crimes unless you can show that coercion was used or a significant amount of your money was stolen.
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:
- Replace a stolen passport.
- Help you find appropriate medical care if you are the victim of violent crimes such as assault or rape.
- Put you in contact with the appropriate police authorities, and if you want us to, contact family members or friends.
- Help you understand the local criminal justice process and direct you to local attorneys, although it is important to remember that local authorities are responsible for investigating and prosecuting the crime.
Although the local authorities are responsible for investigating and prosecuting the crime, consular officers can help you understand the local criminal justice process and can direct you to local attorneys.
The local equivalent to the “911” emergency line in Romania is 112. English-speaking operators are available.
Please see our information for victims of crime, including possible victim compensation programs in the United States.
Please also see the Embassy’s Victim Assistance Brochure and Romanian Social Services Handout for specific information about victim assistance in Romania. Please also see the Embassy’s list of attorneys in Romania who speak English and work with U.S. citizens.
Local Laws & Special Circumstances
CRIMINAL PENALTIES: While traveling or living in Romania, you are subject to its laws. Foreign laws and legal systems can be vastly different from our own. Persons violating Romanian laws, even unknowingly, may be expelled, arrested, or imprisoned. Penalties for possessing, using, or trafficking in illegal drugs in Romania are severe, and convicted offenders can expect long jail sentences and heavy fines. If you break local laws in Romania, your U.S. passport won’t help you avoid arrest or prosecution.
There are also some things that might be legal in the country you visit, but still illegal in the United States. Counterfeit and pirated goods are illegal in the United States and if you purchase them in a foreign country, you may be breaking local law as well.
You can be prosecuted in the United States for engaging in sexual conduct with children or for using or disseminating child pornography in a foreign country regardless of the legality of these activities under that country’s laws. Under Romanian law, engaging in sexual conduct with a minor under the age of 18 is a crime punishable with a 2-10 year prison sentence. Engaging in illicit sexual conduct with someone who has a physical or psychological disability is punishable with a 2-10 year prison sentence. The attempt to contact a minor for the purpose of engaging in sexual conduct is a crime punishable by 1-12 months prison or a criminal fine. The production, distribution, transfer or possession of obscene materials depicting minors is a crime punishable with a 3-12 year prison sentence. Prostitution is illegal in Romania, regardless of the age of the participants.
Arrest notifications in host country: While some countries will automatically notify the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate if a U.S. citizen is detained or arrested in that country, others may not. To ensure that the United States is aware of your circumstances, request that the police and prison officials notify the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate as soon as you are arrested or detained overseas. A list of English speaking attorneys can be found on the embassy’s website. The Romanian authorities will provide you with an attorney and translator if you cannot afford one.
SPECIAL CIRCUMSTANCES: Stray dogs are common in Romania and generally tolerated. Strays are often fed and are seen frequently in public areas, especially in or near parks. Some statistics report one dog bite hourly in Bucharest. Because the immunization status of stray dogs is unknown, precautions to prevent rabies are recommended. See the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website for more details. If you encounter dogs that appear aggressive, it is best to change your path to avoid contact.
Romania's customs authorities strictly regulate temporary importation or exportation of firearms, antiquities, and medications, into and from Romania. Romanian law allows you to bring cash into or out of Romania; however, you must declare sums larger than 10,000 Euros or the equivalent. You should contact the Embassy of Romania in Washington or one of Romania's consulates in the United States (see above) for specific information regarding customs requirements.
The unit of currency in Romania is the leu (also called the RON). ATMs, called "bancomats" in Romanian, are widely available throughout larger cities. However, ATMs that accept debit cards from the United States are less widespread. Look for international banks or ATMs that have symbols for international networks such as STAR and PLUS.
While major credit cards are accepted in many places, there is risk of fraud (see Crime). Contrary to practice in the United States, a PIN is usually required to make credit card purchases. Many U.S. banks allow cardholders to establish such a PIN prior to travel, in case one is needed. You should notify your bank of your international travel, and the potential legitimate use of your card abroad, prior to leaving the United States. Travelers' checks are of limited use but may be used to purchase local currency at some exchange houses.
Both official and societal corruption remains problematic in Romania. For more details, please see the Embassy’s website page on corruption.
Disaster Preparedness: Romania is situated in a seismically active region and has a history of devastating earthquakes, with the greatest risk occurring in Bucharest. Mountainous areas of the country can be subject to torrential rains and flash floods, especially in the spring and summer months. Winter storms are severe and icy streets and sidewalks are hazardous; you should wear shoe traction devices to prevent slipping and be alert to falling icicles. While responsibility for caring for disaster victims, including foreigners, rests with Romanian authorities, disaster preparedness is also a personal responsibility. Additional information is available from the U.S. Embassy in Bucharest. General information about natural disaster preparedness is available from the U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency.
WOMEN TRAVELER INFORMATION: If you are a woman traveling abroad, please review our travel tips for Women Travelers.
LGBT RIGHTS: Lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) individuals enjoy full rights in Romania; however, an annual gay pride parade in Bucharest has been the scene of violent protests in past years. The LGBT community is protected by anti-discrimination laws, and there are no legal or governmental impediments to the organization of LGBT events. For more detailed information about LGBT rights in Romania, you may review the State Department’s Country Reports on Human Rights Practices for 2013. For further information on lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) travel, please read our LGBT Travel Information page.
ACCESSIBILITY: While in Romania, individuals with disabilities may find accessibility and accommodation very different from that in the United States.
Romanian laws and regulations require that public places, the outdoor environment, means of transportation, and housing are made accessible.
Although progress has been made, accessibility greatly varies in Romania, with a significant difference between urban and rural areas. Public transportation and building access are better in Bucharest and other large cities, international airports, and large hotels. Sidewalks and streets are uneven, and many small hotels and tourist sites do not have elevators or ramps. Access to public transportation is not adequately marked for people with visual impairments. Persons with disabilities will face obstacles when trying to gain access to public transportation. Where buses equipped for persons with disabilities do exist, a disabled person may find that the bus stops right in front of a parked car to which he/she cannot gain access. In addition, platforms may be narrow, steep, and slippery, especially at subway stations. There are few designated or reserved parking spaces for disabled people. Public institutions, cultural institutions and supermarkets are well lit, and most have a ramp at the entrance for use by people with mobility difficulties. Most public buildings have corridors spacious enough for a wheelchair user to pass through comfortably. Central public institutions and supermarkets are best equipped with facilities for persons with disabilities. Restaurants, subway stations, and smaller public institutions are not as accessible.
Access for people with disabilities to Romania's tourist attractions has improved in recent years; however, it is prudent to check with all service providers prior to your visit, to ensure that they meet your specific needs. Advance notice and reservations will also help ensure that you receive the best possible assistance.
Medical care in Romania is generally not up to Western standards and basic medical supplies are limited, especially outside major cities. Some medical providers that meet Western quality standards are available in Bucharest and other cities but can be difficult to locate. Sanitary conditions in hospitals are variable. Nursing care and assistance from orderlies is often lacking in hospitals. Families often provide basic assistance to hospitalized relatives that U.S. citizens generally expect the hospital to provide. Travelers seeking medical treatment should choose their provider carefully.
Most prescription drugs and over-the-counter medication are available in Romania but may be sold under different brand names. Specific individual drugs may not be available due to differences in laws and regulations.
Response times for emergency services vary widely depending on the region of the country and the nature of the emergency. Romania has helicopter services available for the most critical medical evacuation situations.
A list of hospitals and physicians is available on the Embassy website. You can also find information regarding health threats or other medical issues affecting visitors to Romania.
You can find detailed 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, which contains additional health information for travelers, including detailed country-specific health information.
Tuberculosis is an increasingly serious health concern in Romania. For further information, please consult the CDC's information on TB.
Travel & Transportation
TRAFFIC SAFETY AND ROAD CONDITIONS: While in Romania, you will encounter road conditions that significantly differ from those in the United States. Traffic accidents are arguably the single most dangerous threat for U.S. citizens visiting Romania. According to the European Union Road Federation, Romania has the highest per vehicle rate of traffic fatalities of any country in the EU. While major streets in larger cities and major inter-city roads are generally in fair to good condition, many secondary roads are in poor repair, unpaved, poorly lit, narrow, and lacking marked lanes. It is essential to practice defensive driving techniques if you choose to drive in Romania.
Roads, especially in the mountains, can be particularly dangerous when wet or covered with snow or ice. Winter snow removal, even in cities and on major highways, can be intermittent. Pedestrians, animals, cyclists, and horse-drawn carts share many roads with motor vehicles and it can be extremely difficult to see, particularly at night in rural areas. Parked vehicles often block sidewalks, forcing pedestrians to walk in the streets. Maintain vigilance when driving to avoid hitting those who are walking in the streets. Cross the street only at crosswalks, and always look both ways before crossing. Crosswalks are generally poorly marked and may be ignored by drivers even if there is a traffic light.
Romanian traffic laws are very strict. The traffic police can confiscate any form of a driver's license or permit for 1-3 months and request payment of fines at the time of the infraction; this includes minor infractions such as failing to yield to pedestrians at crosswalks. There is zero tolerance for driving under the influence of alcohol. Police are required to give all drivers involved in an accident a breathalyzer tests on the scene. Refusal to take a Breathalyzer test will result in criminal penalties regardless of whether or not alcohol was involved. Driving under the influence of alcohol or causing an accident resulting in injury or death may result in imprisonment.
U.S. driver's licenses are only valid in Romania for up to 90 days. Before the 90-day period has expired, U.S. citizens must either obtain an international driving permit in addition to their U.S. driver's license or a Romanian driver's license. Wearing a seat belt is mandatory. Children under 12 years of age may not be transported in the front seat. The use of mobile phones while driving is banned, with exception of hands free systems.
For current traffic regulations and speed limits in Romania please visit the Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs .
When entering Romania your vehicle is classed as a temporarily imported vehicle and a road tax is levied on all motor vehicles. Road tax badges known as "rovinieta" can be purchased from border crossing points. Drivers of vehicles registered abroad who are not in possession of a valid green card must take out short term insurance at the border. Foreign drivers failing to purchase a "rovinieta" during their stay may incur a fine between 3000 euro ($3600 USD) to 4000 euro ($4800 USD) when leaving the country. Proof of insurance and the cars registration document is required when purchasing the "rovinieta".
The host country authority responsible for road safety is the Traffic Police of the Romanian Ministry of Interior. You can reach emergency roadside help and information for vehicle assistance and towing services by dialing 9271. For ambulance services, fire brigade, or police dial 112.
AVIATION SAFETY OVERSIGHT: The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has assessed the Government of Romania’s Civil Aviation Authority as being in compliance with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) aviation safety standards for oversight of Romania’s air carrier operations. Further information may be found on the FAA’s safety assessment page.