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Aruba
Official Name:

Aruba

Last Updated: May 8, 2017

Embassy Messages

Further Safety and Security Information

Travel Warnings: Issued when Protracted situations make a country dangerous or unstable. Defer or reconsider travel.

Travel Alerts: Issued when short-term conditions pose imminent threats. Defer or reconsider travel.

Embassy Messages: Issued when local security issues arise.

Assistance for U.S. Citizens

Assistance for U.S. Citizens

U.S. Consulate General Curacao

J.B. Gorsiraweg 1,
Willemstad, Curaçao

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Quick Facts
PASSPORT VALIDITY:

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Must be valid at time of entry and for duration of stay. More information on entry requirements can be found here.

BLANK PASSPORT PAGES:

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One page required for entry stamp

TOURIST VISA REQUIRED:

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None

VACCINATIONS:

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None

CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR ENTRY:

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None

CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR EXIT:

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None

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U.S. Consulate General Curacao

J.B. Gorsiraweg 1,
Willemstad, Curaçao

Telephone: +(599) (9) 461-3066

Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +(599) (9) 510-6870

Fax: +(599) (9) 461-6489

Read the Department of State Fact Sheet on Aruba for additional information on U.S. – Aruba relations.

Upon arrival in Aruba, you must have: (1) a U.S. passport valid for the duration of your stay; (2) a completed Embarkation and Disembarkation Card (ED-Card); (3) a return or onward ticket; and (4) proof of sufficient funds to cover your accommodations and food expenses during your stay. For stays longer than 30 days, see Aruba’s extension of stay upon entry requirements. You can complete the ED-Card in advance of your trip online.

U.S. citizens  do not require a visa to travel to Aruba.U.S. citizens are allowed to stay in Aruba without a visa or permit for a maximum consecutive period of six months each calendar year. If you want to stay longer than 180 days, or if you want to work, you must apply for a residence permit from the Directorate of Alien Integration, Policy and Admission (DIMAS).    

For further information, travelers may contact: the Royal Netherlands Embassy, 4200 Linnean Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20008, telephone (202) 244-5300; the Dutch Consulates in Chicago, Miami, New York, and San Francisco; the Government of Aruba; Directorate of Alien Integration, Policy and Admission (DIMAS); and the Aruba Tourism Authority.

The U.S. Department of State is unaware of any HIV/AIDS entry restrictions for visitors to or foreign residents of Aruba.

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.

Crimes of opportunity, such as pickpockets and purse snatching particularly at beaches, hotel lobbies, or from cars are common. Accordingly,

  • Be aware of your surroundings and take precautions to secure personal property. 
  • Do not leave valuables in cars in plain view or unattended in unsecured hotel rooms and rental homes. 
  • Keep a copy  of your valid U.S. passport in a secure location in case your passport is stolen.

Incidents of violent crime, including rape and armed robbery – although not common – do occur. Exercise caution when visiting more isolated areas on the island. 

There is an increased risk of crime in the San Nicolas district, especially at night. 

Theft of rental vehicles, can occur. Vehicle leases and rentals may not be fully covered by local insurance when a vehicle is stolen or damaged.

Parents of young travelers should be aware that the legal drinking age of 18 is not always enforced, so extra parental supervision may be appropriate. Travelers should take standard safety precautions when frequenting nightclubs and bars. Travel in pairs or groups and, if you consume alcohol, do so responsibly. Take precautions to avoid consuming spiked beverages, e.g., do not leave your drink unattended or accept open containers from strangers. 

See the Department of State and the FBI pages for information on scams.

Victims of Crime:

Dial 911 if you need emergency medical assistance. Dial 100 for police assistance.

If you or someone you know becomes  a victim of crime, you should contact the local police and the U.S. Consulate in Curacao. Do not rely on hotel, restaurant, or tour company management to make the police report for you.

Remember that local authorities are responsible for investigating and prosecuting crimes that occur on Aruba.   

We can:

  • help you find appropriate medical care
  • assist you in reporting a crime to the police
  • contact relatives or friends with your written consent
  • explain the local criminal justice process in general terms
  • replace a stolen or lost passport
  • provide a list of local attorneys
  • provide our information on victim’s compensation programs in the U.S.
  • provide an emergency loan for repatriation to the United States and/or limited medical support in cases of destitution
  • help you find accommodation and arrange flights home

For more information, see our webpage on help for U.S. victims of crime overseas.

Domestic Violence:  U.S. citizen victims of domestic violence may contact the Consulate in Curacao for assistance.  If you are in immediate danger, first contact the local police at 100. Call 911 for medical assistance.

For further information:

Access to quality medical care is limited in Aruba and facilities may not offer the health and service standards expected in the United States

We do not pay medical bills. Be aware that U.S. Medicare does not apply overseas.  

Medical Insurance: Make sure your health insurance plan provides coverage overseas. Most care providers overseas only accept cash payments. See our webpage for more information on insurance providers for overseas coverage. We strongly recommend supplemental insurance to cover medical evacuation.

There is one hospital, Dr. H.E. Oduber Hospital, which provides services comparable to a small hospital in the U.S. The hospital has tiered health care with accomodations varying according to insurance and ability to pay.

There is no decompression chamber in Aruba. Persons suffering from decompression sickness must be medically evacuated for proper treatment.  

We strongly recommend supplemental insurance to cover medical evacuation.      

Not all medical specialties are represented in Aruba. Critically ill patients requiring service not offered at Dr. H.E. Oduber Hospital are transferred to  Colombia. If medical evacuation is authorized by the patient’s insurance carrier or funded privately (approximately $15,000 – 25,000), patients can be transferred to the United States. 

In addition to Dr. H.E. Oduber Hospital, there is a 24/7 walk-in clinic, Urgent Care Aruba, for non-life threatening illnesses and injuries. Urgent Care Aruba, located at Noord 63 (3-5 minutes from Aruba’s high-rise hotels), offers pick-up and drop-service for a fee.

There is a small medical center, Centro Medico, in San Nicolas. The clinic is located at Bernhardstraat 75 and can be reached by car, taxi, or bus (line 1).

Phone numbers for health and service providers in Aruba:

Ambulance: 911

Hospital: +(297) 527-4000 

Urgent Care Aruba: +(297) 586 0448

Centro Medico San Nicolas: +(297) 524-8833

Aruba is only 12 degrees from the equator, so the solar radiation is very strong. Sunscreen is recommended anytime you are outside during the day.

Medicines: Bring all necessary medications with you. Carry prescription medication in original packaging, along with your doctor’s prescription. The variety of drugs available locally is smaller and limited than in the U.S For most medicines, you will need a local prescription. Pharmacies (called “boticas”) provide prescription and over-the-counter medicines. Boticas normally operate Monday to Saturday from 7 am to 7 pm. One botica stays open at night and on weekends according to an on-call schedule. To find out which pharmacy is available after hours, you can visit pharmacy on duty in Aruba, or check with your hotel.  

The following diseases are prevalent: Zika Virus, Chikungunya, Dengue Fever

Zika virus is a mosquito-borne illness that can be spread from a pregnant woman to her unborn baby as well as through sexual contact. The CDC has concluded that the Zika virus is a cause of microcephaly and other severe fetal brain defects in some fetuses and babies born to infected mothers. Zika outbreaks have been reported in Aruba. For additional information about Zika, including travel advisories, visit the CDC website.

Chikunguya and Dengue are mosquito-borne illnesses that are becoming more frequent in tropical and equatorial climates around the world. Preventing mosquito bites is the most important way to prevent these illnesses. Travelers should carry and use CDC recommended insect repellents.

Vaccinations: Be up-to-date on all vaccinations recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Further health information:

Criminal Penalties: You are subject to local laws. If you violate local laws, even unknowingly, you may be expelled, arrested, or imprisoned. 

Furthermore, some offenses committed overseas can be prosecuted in the U.S., regardless of local law. For examples, see our website on crimes against minors abroad and the Department of Justice website.

In Aruba, laws against possession of controlled substances are enforced rigorously, including against tourists in possession of marijuana for personal use.

Arrest Notification: If you are arrested or detained, ask police or prison officials to notify the U.S. Consulate in Curacao immediately. See our webpage for further information.

Local law is based on Dutch law, which allows for the detention of subjects during an investigation with the approval of a judge. Persons detained in Aruba do not have the option of posting bond for their release.

Dual Nationality: Dutch law, in principle, does not permit dual nationality.  However, there are exceptions to this rule.  For detailed information, contact the The Netherlands Embassy in Washington, DC, or one of the Dutch Consulates in the United States.

Faith-Based Travelers: See the Department of State’s International Religious Freedom Report.

LGBTI Travelers: There are no legal restrictions on same-sex sexual relations or the organization of LGBTI events in Aruba. See our LGBTI Travel Information page and section 6 of our Human Rights Report for further details.

Travelers Who Require Accessibility Assistance: While on Aruba, individuals with disabilities may find accessibility and accommodation very different than in the United States. Sidewalks and crossings in many areas are not wheelchair accessible, and many buildings lack ramps.

Students: See our Students Abroad page and FBI travel tips.

Women Travelers: See our travel tips for Women Travelers.

Road Conditions and Safety: Take extra caution when driving on Aruba.

Proceed through intersections with caution as traffic signs are often hidden or nonexistent.  Roads are very slippery when it rains. Watch out for scooters, motorcycles, and ATVs, as drivers of these vehicles do not strictly follow traffic rules. Be alert for speeding cars and drunk drivers. In rural areas, watch out for goats and other animals that cross the road unexpectedly. Night driving is reasonably safe, as long as drivers are familiar with the route and road conditions.  Roads are not as well-lit as in theUnited States. Driving while intoxicated is punishable by fine and imprisonment.

Traffic Laws:

You can drive in Aruba with a valid U.S. driver’s license.

  • Drivers approaching roundabouts must yield to traffic already in the roundabout. 
  • Right turns at red lights are prohibited. U-turns are often restricted.
  • Traffic signs prohibiting actions have a red circle around them, but not the red slash you expect to see in the United States. 
  • Local law requires drivers and passengers to wear seat belts, and motorcyclists to wear helmets. 
  • Children must ride in the back seat, and children under 5 years of age must be in a child safety seat. 

In the event of an accident, do not move your car or pull over to alleviate a traffic jam caused by the accident. If an accident occurs, dial 100 to inform the police and call the rental car company and the insurance company immediately.   

Public Transportation: Taxis, while relatively expensive, are safe and well regulated. Taxis do not have meters. Determine the price in advance, as rates are based on destination rather than mileage.  Buses provide convenient and inexpensive service to and from many hotels and downtown shopping areas. Buses run every 15 minutes between 5:45 am and 6 pm, and every 40 minutes between 6 pm and 11:30 pm. The central bus station in downtown Oranjestad is located across the road from the cruise terminal next to Royal Plaza.

See our Road Safety page for more information. Visit the website of the Aruba Tourism Authority for more information about transportation.

Watersports Advisory: You should carefully assess the potential risks inherent in recreational water activities and measure your participation in them against your physical capabilities and skills. Never venture out alone, particularly at isolated beaches or far out to sea. Avoid entering the water above your waist if you have been drinking and always be mindful of watercraft traffic in the area. When in doubt, stay out!  

Aviation Safety Oversight:

The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has assessed the government of Aruba’s Civil Aviation Authority as being in compliance with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) aviation safety standards for oversight of Aruba’s air carrier operations. Further information may be found on the FAA’s safety assessment page.

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