Emergency Alert
September 17, 2017
Hurricanes Irma and Jose
Emergency Alert
October 2, 2017
Hurricane Maria

International Travel

English

Country Information

Bahrain

Country Information

Bahrain
Kingdom of Bahrain
Last Updated: March 6, 2017
ALL /
ALL /
Embassy Messages

Manama

 

Quick Facts
PASSPORT VALIDITY:

6 months

BLANK PASSPORT PAGES:

1 page per entry stamp

TOURIST VISA REQUIRED:

Yes

VACCINATIONS:

None

CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR ENTRY:

$10,000

CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR EXIT:

None

ALL /
ALL /
Embassies and Consulates

U.S. Embassy Manama

Building No. 979
Road 3119, Block 331
Zinj District
Manama
Kingdom of Bahrain
Telephone: +(973) 1724-2700
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +(973) 1727-5126
Fax: +(973) 1727-2594; 1725-6242 (Consular Section)
The workweek in Bahrain is Sunday through Thursday.

ALL /
ALL /
Destination Description

See the Department of State’s Fact Sheet on Bahrain for information on U.S. – Bahrain relations.

ALL /
ALL /
Entry, Exit and Visa Requirements

Visit the Embassy of Bahrain website for the most current visa information.

Requirements for Entry:

  • Passport valid for at least six months
  • Visa

Types of visas:

Tourist visas: Apply for two-week tourist visas online on the Bahraini government website or upon arrival in the country. Ask for five-year multiple entry visas at Bahraini embassies

U.S. Diplomatic and Official passport holders: Request a no-fee two-week visa upon arrival.

Journalism visas: Journalists must have a journalism visa.

Be prepared to answer questions regarding your purpose of travel. Be sure to leave Bahrain before your visa expires; otherwise, you face heavy fines and possible arrest and/or deportation.

Working in Bahrain: To work in Bahrain you must have the following:

  • Valid work visa
  • Residency permit
  • Local identification card

Consult Bahrain’s Labor Market Regulatory Authority for complete details.

Obtain a valid work permit and signed employment contract before arriving in Bahrain. The contract should clearly state:

  • Provisions related to relocation expenses
  • Type of housing and number of occupants
  • Any visa fees to be paid by the employee
  • Salary payment schedule and any salary penalties
  • Terms of probation period
  • Who pays transportation expenses, should the contract be terminated

Do not work in Bahrain on a tourist visa. Even if employers advise you otherwise, Bahraini authorities will hold you personally liable if you do not have a valid work permit. 

Authenticating Documents for Your Employment Permit

Have all required documents authenticated before arriving. The U.S. Embassy in Manama cannot provide this service. For information on authentication of U.S. issued documents, see Authentication of American Academic Credentials for Use Abroad and contact our Office of Authentications.

Employer Retention of U.S. Passports: It is illegal, but a common practice, for Bahraini employers to retain your passport. Such retention could delay your travel or grant undue leverage to your employer in case of a dispute. U.S. passports are the property of the U.S. government. 

While many U.S. citizens have a positive experience working in Bahrain, we have received a number of complaints from U.S. citizens employed in the education sector.

Travel Bans: If you have unpaid debt or are involved in legal proceedings (including debt, labor, or custody disputes), authorities may not allow you to leave Bahrain until the issue is resolved, even if takes several years to close the case. Should this happen, the U.S. Embassy cannot pay your legal expenses or living expenses.

Residents intending to return to Bahrain: Be sure to obtain a re-entry permit valid for at least six months before leaving. Renew visas and residency permits through the General Directorate of Nationality, Passports, and Residence (GDNPR).

HIV/AIDS Restrictions: All declared HIV-positive foreigners  risk immediate deportation; deportation may be applied to all “communicable diseases.” Although you are not required to declare HIV status upon arrival, the government revokes visas of non-Bahrainis who are HIV positive. Please verify this information with the Embassy of the Kingdom of Bahrain before traveling. 

HIV travelers: Carry enough medication to cover your intended stay, since obtaining drugs locally could be difficult and/or lead to deportation. Pharmacies reportedly will not sell AIDS drugs to non-Bahraini citizens without a permit from the Ministry of Health.  Similarly, health facilities and pharmacies are required to report HIV-positive foreigners to the Ministry of Health.

Dual nationality: Bahrain does not recognize dual nationality, though some exceptions are made. In early 2017 Bahrain launched a campaign requiring all dual nationals to declare and register their other nationality with the government.   

If you are eligible for Bahraini citizenship, authorities will not issue you a Bahraini passport unless you relinquish your U.S. passport.

Find information on dual nationality, prevention of international child abduction, and customs regulations  on our website.

ALL /
ALL /
Safety and Security

Potential for Terrorist Activity: Spontaneous and violent anti-government demonstrations may occur, particularly at night and on weekends. Such activity is usually confined to specific locations and is rarely widespread.

Demonstrations sometimes result in blocked highways and unofficial checkpoints. Participants occasionally throw rocks, Molotov cocktails, and utilize improvised explosive devices and shotgun-like projectile launchers. The Ministry of Interior maintains official checkpoints and routinely uses tear gas, stun grenades, and other crowd dispersal techniques against demonstrators.

Avoid all demonstrations. To date, no U.S. citizens have been specifically targeted during protest activity. Local media outlets have sometimes expressed anti-U.S. sentiment, and demonstrators have occasionally burned U.S. flags. 

In December 2016, the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) released a video statement urging its supporters to launch attacks in Bahrain, including those targeting U.S. military personnel. The group also called for attacks against the Shiite majority.

Remain alert to local security developments.  For assistance, call the local police at 999.

Restricted travel: The U.S. Embassy restricts its employees from traveling to specific areas where protest activity is more likely and advises all U.S. citizens to do the same. 

See the Embassy’s website for travel restrictions and security updates.

Stay informed about local events through the local media.

Crime: The crime rate in Bahrain is low, and violent crime is rare. Thieves are active in the old market area.

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

Victims of Crime: Local authorities are responsible for investigating and prosecuting the crime. Report crimes to the local police at 999 and contact the U.S. Embassy, if you need assistance. During business hours, call +(973) 1724-2700; after hours, call +(973) 1727-5126.  

U.S. citizen victims of sexual assault should first contact the local police and then follow up with the U.S. Embassy. 

U.S. citizen victims of domestic violence may contact the U.S. Embassy for assistance.

See our webpage on help for U.S. victims of crime overseas.

Emergency Numbers:

Police/Fire Department/Ambulance/ National Emergency call center – 999
Fire accidents – 997
Casualty bureau – 990
Criminal Investigations (CID) – 992
Coast Guard (CGD) – 994
Traffic police – 199
International Emergency Number – 112

Traffic Hotline:

Call center –  17872287
Main Switchboard – 17872222

Police Stations:

East Riffa Police Station – 1777 3158
West Riffa Police Station –  1766 4606
Exhibition Road Police Station – 1755 0629
Hawak Police Station –  1784 9009
Hidd Police Station  – 1767 1212
Hoora Police Station – 1729 1555
Naim Police Station –  1725 8210
Samaheej Police Station – 1733 4401
Umm-Al Hasam Police Station –  1772 8229
Zallaq Police Station –  1763 1211

Household Emergencies – 8000 1810

Violence against Women –  1787 0302

Other Useful Numbers:

National contact number for government related appointments –  8000 8001
Civil Aviation Department, Bahrain – 1732 1100
Bahrain International Airport – 1732 1997

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
  • 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
  • replace a stolen or lost passport

For further information:

ALL /
ALL /
Local Laws & Special Circumstances

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

Furthermore, some laws are also prosecutable in the U.S., regardless of local law. For examples, see our website on crimes against minors abroad and the Department of Justice website.

Arrest Notification: If you are arrested or detained, ask police or prison officials to notify the U.S. Embassy immediately. Embassy officials can more readily visit you while you are still being detained at a police station than after you have been transferred to a prison. See our webpage for further information and our embassy website for a list of local lawyers.

Extra-marital sexual relations are a criminal offense.  If a child is born out of wedlock, obtaining a civil birth certificate is extremely difficult and frequently leads to the deportation of the mother and the child.  Without a birth certificate, obtaining a passport for the child’s travel can be difficult.  Additionally, transmission of citizenship is typically through the father which could lead to the child being stateless.  In the case of U.S. citizen mothers, the embassy may be able to document such children as U.S. citizens or may be able to process an immigrant visa petition.  Consult the embassy for options, but it is advisable to depart the country before giving birth.

Drug Usage: Penalties for possessing, using, or trafficking in illegal drugs are severe, including long jail sentences and heavy fines. You can be arrested for public drunkenness and disorderly behavior.

Driving under the Influence: Penalties include imprisonment and/or heavy fines. Any sign of alcohol consumption may be taken as evidence of driving under the influence.

Using vulgar language or hand gestures can result in heavy fines or criminal charges.

It is illegal to photograph certain buildings in Bahrain.

Carry a form of identification with you at all times, such as a passport, local ID card (CPR card), or driver’s license.

Child Abduction and Custody Cases: There are no treaties in force between Bahrain and the United States concerning international parental child abduction and custody cases. Bahraini courts may ignore child custody decrees issued in the United States. 

Sharia law generally controls custody issues. Decisions are often based on age and gender of the children rather than the U.S. “best interest of the child” standard.

Social Services: Information concerning family and child services can be found on the Ministry of Labor and Social Development’s website.

Divorce: Seek legal counsel and ascertain your rights in Bahrain before visiting the country if you are a U.S. citizen divorced from/in the process of divorcing a Bahraini citizen. This is particularly important regarding child custody issues. See our website on Bahrain and international child abduction for additional information. 

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

LGBTI Travelers: While the law does not criminalize consensual same-sex sexual activity between people over 21, lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender activities are not accepted socially.

See our LGBTI Travel Information page and section 6 of our Human Rights Report for further details.

Travelers Who Require Accessibility Assistance: Transportation is not wheelchair-accessible, and sidewalks and crosswalks—even in large cities—are not accessible.

Outside of the more expensive hotels in the capital, virtually no hotels offer accessible accommodations.

There are very few accessible restaurants, shops, or historical sites. Handicap-accessible bathrooms, even in major hospitals, are generally not available.

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

Women Travelers: Women traveling alone should maintain vigilance. Review this report’s section on Local Law, as well as our travel tips for Women Travelers.

ALL /
ALL /
Health

Medical Care: Basic medical care is available through public and private hospitals, as well as private clinics. In most facilities the care is below U.S. standards. Public hospitals have trauma and ICU units. Most postoperative and trauma centers do not provide adequate pain management.  People with chronic general medical or mental health conditions and HIV-related health issues may not be able to obtain appropriate emergency care in Bahrain. American privacy and confidentiality laws may not apply to Bahraini medical providers.

Prescription Medication: Check with Customs Affairs of Bahrain to ensure your medications are legal in the country. Most narcotic painkillers, stimulants, and controlled sedatives/hypnotics are not easily available, and may be illegal in many cases.  Always carry your prescription medication in original packaging along with your doctor’s prescription. 

Payment: Payment at all medical facilities is due at the time of service. Some hospitals have very limited direct billing capability for certain insurance carriers. Billing and insurance practices vary among the medical facilities.

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 (our webpage) to cover medical evacuation.

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

Further health information:

ALL /
ALL /
Travel and Transportation

Road Conditions and Safety: Road travel is generally safe. Highways and major roads in northern Bahrain are wide and well maintained. Roads in villages and older parts of Manama and Muharraq are narrow, congested and twisting.

Traffic Laws: Traffic moves on the right. At roundabouts (traffic circles), cars within the traffic circle have right of way over those attempting to enter.

Drivers frequently speed in spite of stiff penalties, including fines and possible imprisonment.

Police can detain drivers for traffic violations.

It is illegal to use a cell phone while driving, and drivers are required to wear seat belts.

Traffic is more congested on the weekends with an influx of vehicles from neighboring countries whose drivers are less disciplined than local residents.

Traffic Accidents: Except for minor accidents, do not move the vehicle until you have filed a report with the traffic police. This applies to single-car accidents as well. If you move the car, insurance companies may deny coverage.

For minor accidents with no injuries, move your vehicle off the road to avoid further accidents. You do not have to wait at the scene for the police.

Filing Accident Reports: You must file a report within 24 hours of the accident.

  • For minor accidents with no injuries, call 199. 
  • For accidents involving injury, call 999.
  • For the traffic department’s main switchboard, call 1787-2222. 

If an accident results in legal proceedings, both drivers may be prohibited from leaving the country until the matter is resolved. Please refer to our Road Safety page for more information.

Public Transportation: Bahrain has a newly expanded public bus system that extends throughout most of the country. A car is still needed to access most locations.

Taxis are available in Bahrain and are typically arranged by phone. Uber also operates in Bahrain.  

AVIATION SAFETY OVERSIGHT: As there is no direct commercial air service to the United States by carriers registered in Bahrain, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has not assessed the government of Bahrain’s Civil Aviation Authority for compliance with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) aviation safety standards.

See  FAA’s safety assessment page for further information.

MARITIME TRAVEL: Mariners planning travel to Bahrain should also check:

U.S. maritime advisories and alerts  

U.S. Coast Guard homeport website

NGA broadcast warnings (select “broadcast warnings”)

Visit Bahrain’s national tourist office and Ministry of Transportation

Hague Convention Participation
Party to the Hague Abduction Convention?
No
U.S. Treaty Partner under the Hague Abduction Convention?
No
What You Can Do
Learn how to respond to abductions FROM the US
Learn how to respond to abductions TO the US
ALL /
ALL /
Embassies and Consulates

U.S. Embassy Manama

Building No. 979
Road 3119, Block 331
Zinj District
Manama
Kingdom of Bahrain
Telephone: +(973) 1724-2700
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +(973) 1727-5126
Fax: +(973) 1727-2594; 1725-6242 (Consular Section)
The workweek in Bahrain is Sunday through Thursday.

ALL /
ALL /
General Information

For information concerning travel to Bahrain, including information about the location of the U.S. Embassy, the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program, entry/exit requirements, safety and security, crime, medical facilities and health information, traffic safety, road conditions and aviation safety, please see country-specific information for Bahrain.

The U.S. Department of State reports statistics and compliance information for individual countries in the Annual Report on International Parental Child Abduction (IPCA).  The report is located here.

 

ALL /
ALL /
Hague Abduction Convention

Bahrain is not a signatory to the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction (Hague Abduction Convention), nor are there any bilateral agreements in force between Bahrain and the United States concerning international parental child abduction.

ALL /
ALL /
Return

Legal systems and laws pertaining to custody, divorce, and parental abduction vary widely from country to country.  Parents are encouraged to consult with an attorney who specializes in family law in Bahrain and who can provide accurate legal guidance that is specific to their circumstances. 

 

The Department of State’s Bureau of Consular Affairs, Directorate for Overseas Citizens Services, Office of Children’s Issues provides assistance in cases of international parental child abduction.  For U.S. citizen parents whose children have been wrongfully removed to or retained in countries that are not U.S. partners under the Hague Abduction Convention, the Office of Children’s Issues can provide information and resources about country-specific options for pursuing the return of or access to an abducted child.  The Office of Children’s Issues may also coordinate with appropriate foreign and U.S. government authorities about the welfare of abducted U.S. citizen children.  Parents are strongly encouraged to contact the Department of State for assistance.

Contact information:

United States Department of State
Bureau of Consular Affairs
CA/OCS/CI
SA-17, 9th Floor
Washington, DC 20522-1709
Telephone:  1-888-407-4747
Outside the United States or Canada: 1-202-501-4444
Website:  travel.state.gov
Email: AskCI@state.gov

 

Parental child abduction may be a crime in Bahrain depending on the circumstances of the child's removal.  Parents are encouraged to consult with an attorney in Bahrain to determine if their particular case qualifies as a crime under Bahraini law.

Parents may wish to consult with an attorney in the United States and in the country to which the child has been removed or retained to learn more about how filing criminal charges may impact a custody case in the foreign court.  Please see Possible Solutions - Pressing Criminal Charges for more information.  

 

 

ALL /
ALL /
Visitation/Access

Legal systems and laws pertaining to custody, divorce, and parental abduction vary widely from country to country.  Parents are encouraged to consult with an attorney who specializes in family law in Bahrain and who can provide accurate legal guidance that is specific to their circumstances.

The Office of Children’s Issues may be able to assist parents seeking access to children who have been wrongfully removed from or retained outside the United States.   Parents who are seeking access to children who were not wrongfully removed from or retained outside the United States should contact the U.S. Embassy in Bahrain for information and possible assistance.

ALL /
ALL /
Retaining an Attorney

Neither the Office of Children’s Issues nor consular officials at the U.S. Embassy in Bahrain are authorized to provide legal advice.

The U.S. Embassy in Manama, Bahrain posts a list of attorneys, including those who specialize in family law.

This list is provided as a courtesy service only and does not constitute an endorsement of any individual attorney. The Department of State assumes no responsibility or liability for the professional ability or reputation of, or the quality of services provided by, the persons or firms included in this list. Professional credentials and areas of expertise are provided directly by the lawyers.

ALL /
ALL /
Mediation

The Department of State is not aware of any government agencies or non-governmental organizations that offer mediation services in international parental child abduction cases in Bahrain.

Exercising Custody Rights

While travelling in a foreign country, you are subject to the laws of that country. It is important for parents to understand that, although a left-behind parent in the United States may have custody or visitation rights pursuant to a U.S. custody order, that order may not be valid and enforceable in the country in which the child is located.  For this reason, we strongly encourage you to speak to a local attorney if planning to remove a child from a foreign country without the consent of the other parent.  Attempts to remove your child to the United States may:

  • Endanger your child and others;
  • Prejudice any future judicial efforts; and
  • Could result in your arrest and imprisonment.

The U.S. government cannot interfere with another country’s court or law enforcement system.

To understand the legal effect of a U.S. order in a foreign country, a parent should consult with a local attorney in the country in which the child is located.  

For information about hiring an attorney abroad, see our section on Retaining a Foreign Attorney. 

Although we cannot recommend an attorney to you, most U.S. Embassies have lists of attorneys available online. Please visit the local U.S. Embassy or Consulate website for a full listing.

For more information on consular assistance for U.S. citizens arrested abroad, please see our website.

Country officers are available to speak with you Monday - Friday, 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.  For assistance with an abduction in progress or any emergency situation that occurs after normal business hours, on weekends, or federal holidays, please call toll free at 1-888-407-4747. See all contact information.

DISCLAIMER: The information in this flyer is provided for general information only, is not intended to be legal advice, and may change without notice. Questions involving interpretation of law should be addressed to an attorney licensed in the relevant jurisdiction. 

 

Hague Convention Participation
Hague Adoption Convention Country?
No
Are Intercountry Adoptions between this country and the United States possible?
Is this country a U.S. Hague Partner?
ALL /
ALL /
Hague Convention Information

Bahrain is not party to the Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption (Hague Adoption Convention). Therefore, when the Hague Adoption Convention entered into force for the United States on April 1, 2008, intercountry adoption processing for Bahrain did not change.

The Department of State does not maintain files on the adoption process in Bahrain because adoptions from Bahrain are rare. Fewer than five adoptions by American citizen parents have taken place in over a decade. Please visit the Department's Country Specific Information sheets for more information on travelling to Bahrain and the U.S. Embassy Manama's website for information on consular services.

ALL /
ALL /
Who Can Adopt
null
ALL /
ALL /
Who Can Be Adopted
null
ALL /
ALL /
How to Adopt
null
ALL /
ALL /
Traveling Abroad
null
ALL /
ALL /
After Adoption
null
ALL /
ALL /
Contact Information
null

Reciprocity Schedule

Select a visa category below to find the visa issuance fee, number of entries, and validity period for visas issued to applicants from this country*/area of authority.

Explanation of Terms

Visa Classification: The type of nonimmigrant visa you are applying for.

Fee: The reciprocity fee, also known as the visa issuance fee, you must pay. This fee is in addition to the nonimmigrant visa application fee (MRV fee).

Number of Entries: The number of times you may seek entry into the United States with that visa. "M" means multiple times. If there is a number, such as "One", you may apply for entry one time with that visa.

Validity Period: This generally means the visa is valid, or can be used, from the date it is issued until the date it expires, for travel with that visa. If your Validity Period is 60 months, your visa will be valid for 60 months from the date it is issued.

Visa Classifications
A
B
C
D
E
F
G
H
I
J
K
L
M
N
O
P
Q
R
S
T
U
V
 
Visa
Classification
Fee Number
of Entries
Validity
Period
A-1 None Multiple 60 Months
A-2 None Multiple 60 Months
A-3 1 None Multiple 24 Months
B-1 None Multiple 60 Months
B-2 None Multiple 60 Months
B-1/B-2 None Multiple 60 Months
C-1 None Multiple 60 Months
C-1/D None Multiple 60 Months
C-2 None Multiple 12 Months
C-3 None Multiple 60 Months
CW-1 11 None Multiple 12 Months
CW-2 11 None Multiple 12 Months
D None Multiple 60 Months
E-1 2 No Treaty N/A N/A
E-2 2 None One 3 Months
E-2C 12 None One 3 Months
F-1 None Multiple 60 Months
F-2 None Multiple 60 Months
G-1 None Multiple 60 Months
G-2 None Multiple 60 Months
G-3 None Multiple 60 Months
G-4 None Multiple 60 Months
G-5 1 None Multiple 24 Months
H-1B None Multiple 60 Months 3
H-1C None Multiple 60 Months 3
H-2A None N/A N/A3
H-2B None N/A N/A3
H-2R None Multiple 60 Months 3
H-3 None Multiple 60 Months 3
H-4 None Multiple 60 Months 3
I None Multiple 60 Months
J-1 4 None Multiple 60 Months
J-2 4 None Multiple 60 Months
K-1 None One 6 Months
K-2 None One 6 Months
K-3 None Multiple 24 Months
K-4 None Multiple 24 Months
L-1 None Multiple 60 Months
L-2 None Multiple 60 Months
M-1 None Multiple 60 Months
M-2 None Multiple 60 Months
N-8 None Multiple 60 Months
N-9 None Multiple 60 Months
NATO 1-7 N/A N/A N/A
O-1 None Multiple 60 Months 3
O-2 None Multiple 60 Months 3
O-3 None Multiple 60 Months 3
P-1 None Multiple 60 Months 3
P-2 None Multiple 60 Months 3
P-3 None Multiple 60 Months 3
P-4 None Multiple 60 Months 3
Q-1 6 None Multiple 15 Months 3
R-1 None Multiple 60 Months
R-2 None Multiple 60 Months
S-5 7 None One 1 Month
S-6 7 None One 1 Month
S-7 7 None One 1 Month
T-1 9 None One 6 Months
T-2 None One 6 Months
T-3 None One 6 Months
T-4 None One 6 Months
T-5 None One 6 Months
T-6 None One 6 Months
TD 5 N/A N/A N/A
U-1 None Multiple 48 Months
U-2 None Multiple 48 Months
U-3 None Multiple 48 Months
U-4 None Multiple 48 Months
U-5 None Multiple 48 Months
V-1 None Multiple 120 Months
V-2 None Multiple 120 Months 8
V-3 None Multiple 120 Months 8
ALL /
ALL /
Country Specific Footnotes

Although care has been taken to ensure the accuracy, completeness and reliability of the information provided, please contact the U.S. Embassy or Consulate where you plan to apply if you believe this information is in error or if you have further questions.

ALL /
ALL /
Visa Category Footnotes
  1. The validity of A-3, G-5, and NATO 7 visas may not exceed the validity of the visa issued to the person who is employing the applicant. The "employer" would have one of the following visa classifications:

    • A-1
    • A-2
    • G-1 through G-4
    • NATO 1 through NATO 6

  2. An E-1 and E-2 visa may be issued only to a principal alien who is a national of a country having a treaty, or its equivalent, with the United States. E-1 and E-2 visas may not be issued to a principal alien if he/she is a stateless resident. The spouse and children of an E-1 or E-2 principal alien are accorded derivative E-1 or E-2 status following the reciprocity schedule, including any reciprocity fees, of the principle alien’s country of nationality.  

    Example: John Doe is a national of the country of Z that has an E-1/E-2 treaty with the U.S. His wife and child are nationals of the country of Y which has no treaty with the U.S. The wife and child would, therefore, be entitled to derivative status and receive the same reciprocity as Mr. Doe, the principal visa holder.  

  3. The validity of H-1 through H-3, O-1 and O-2, P-1 through P-3, and Q visas may not exceed the period of validity of the approved petition or the number of months shown, whichever is less.

    Under 8 CFR §214.2, H-2A and H-2B petitions may generally only be approved for nationals of countries that the Secretary of Homeland Security has designated as participating countries. The current list of eligible countries is available on USCIS's website for both H-2A and H-2B visas. Nationals of countries not on this list may be the beneficiary of an approved H-2A or H2-B petition in limited circumstances at the discretion of the Department of Homeland Security if specifically named on the petition.  

    Derivative H-4, L-2, O-3, and P-4 visas, issued to accompanying or following-to-join spouses and children, may not exceed the validity of the visa issued to the principal alien.

  4. There is no reciprocity fee for the issuance of a J visa if the alien is a United States Government grantee or a participant in an exchange program sponsored by the United States Government.

    Also, there is no reciprocity fee for visa issuance to an accompanying or following-to-join spouse or child (J-2) of an exchange visitor grantee or participant.

    In addition, an applicant is eligible for an exemption from the MRV fee if he or she is participating in a State Department, USAID, or other federally funded educational and cultural exchange program (program serial numbers G-1, G-2, G-3 and G-7).

    However, all other applicants with U.S. Government sponsorships, including other J-visa applicants, are subject to the MRV processing fee.

  5. Under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), Canadian and Mexican nationals coming to engage in certain types of professional employment in the United States may be admitted in a special nonimmigrant category known as the "trade NAFTA" or "TN" category. Their dependents (spouse and children) accompanying or following to join them may be admitted in the "trade dependent" or "TD" category whether or not they possess Canadian or Mexican nationality. Except as noted below, the number of entries, fees and validity for non-Canadian or non-Mexican family members of a TN status holder seeking TD visas should be based on the reciprocity schedule of the TN principal alien.

    Canadian Nationals

    Since Canadian nationals generally are exempt from visa requirement, a Canadian "TN' or "TD" alien does not require a visa to enter the United States. However, the non-Canadian national dependent of a Canadian "TN", unless otherwise exempt from the visa requirement, must obtain a "TD" visa before attempting to enter the United States. The standard reciprocity fee and validity period for all non-Canadian "TD"s is no fee, issued for multiple entries for a period of 36 months, or for the duration of the principal alien's visa and/or authorized period of stay, whichever is less. See 'NOTE' under Canadian reciprocity schedule regarding applicants of Iranian, Iraqi or Libyan nationality.

    Mexican Nationals

    Mexican nationals are not visa-exempt. Therefore, all Mexican "TN"s and both Mexican and non-Mexican national "TD"s accompanying or following to join them who are not otherwise exempt from the visa requirement (e.g., the Canadian spouse of a Mexican national "TN") must obtain nonimmigrant visas.

    Applicants of Iranian, Iraqi or Libyan nationality, who have a permanent resident or refugee status in Canada/Mexico, may not be accorded Canadian/Mexican reciprocity, even when applying in Canada/Mexico. The reciprocity fee and period for "TD" applicants from Libya is $10.00 for one entry over a period of 3 months. The Iranian and Iraqi "TD" is no fee with one entry over a period of 3 months.

  6. Q-2 (principal) and Q-3 (dependent) visa categories are in existence as a result of the 'Irish Peace Process Cultural and Training Program Act of 1998'. However, because the Department anticipates that virtually all applicants for this special program will be either Irish or U.K. nationals, the Q-2 and Q-3 categories have been placed only in the reciprocity schedules for those two countries. Q-2 and Q-3 visas are available only at the Embassy in Dublin and the Consulate General in Belfast.

  7. No S visa may be issued without first obtaining the Department's authorization.

  8. V-2 and V-3 status is limited to persons who have not yet attained their 21st birthday. Accordingly, the period of validity of a V-2 or V-3 visa must be limited to expire on or before the applicant's twenty-first birthday.

  9. Posts may not issue a T-1 visa. A T-1 applicant must be physically present in the United States, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands or a U.S. port of entry, where he/she will apply for an adjustment of status to that of a T-1. The following dependents of a T-1 visa holder, however, may be issued a T visa at a U.S. consular office abroad:

    • T-2 (spouse)
    • T-3 (child)
    • T-4 (parent)
  10. The validity of NATO-5 visas may not exceed the period of validity of the employment contract or 12 months, whichever is less.

  11. The validity of CW-1 and CW-2 visas shall not exceed the maximum initial period of admission allowed by DHS (12 months) or the duration of the transition period ending December 31, 2014, whichever is shortest.

  12. The validity of E-2C visas shall not exceed the maximum initial period of admission allowed by DHS (24 months) or the duration of the transition period ending December 31, 2014, whichever is shortest.

 

 

ALL /
ALL /
General Documents

Please check back for update

Birth, Death, Burial Certificates

Birth

Available for all persons whose births occurred in a hospital. Such birth certificates can be obtained from the Birth and Death Records Office, Public Health Department, P.O. Box 12, Manama, State of Bahrain. The certificate is in both Arabic and English. Requirements are an application form (acquired from the above address), copies of parents' passports, name of child, date and place of birth. There may be a fee for this service.

For births that occurred at home and which were not recorded, an application form obtained from the above address should be completed and forwarded to the local court for attestation. Subsequently, a birth certificate is issued by the Public Health Department provided the applicant has furnished the same requirements as state above.

Death/Burial

Available. Write to: The Director of Public Health, Birth and Death Records Office, Public Health Department, P.O. Box 12, Manama, State of Bahrain. The same procedures and fees apply as for birth certificates. Burial certificates for Christians buried in Bahrain are available from the church responsible for the burial.

Marriage, Divorce Certificates

Marriage

Available. Marriages between Muslims are performed by local religious leaders according to Islamic law and custom. Certificates of marriages are kept on file with the appropriate Sharia Court. Requests for copies of these certificates should be addressed either to the Sunni or Shi'a Sharia Court, Ministry of Justice, P.O. Box 450, Manama, State of Bahrain. Each request should state the date of the marriage. These certificates are available only in Arabic. Marriages between two Christians can be performed in one of four designated Christina churches, each maintaining its own records, or they can be married at the Ministry of Justice. Requests for these records should be directed to the church where the marriage took place or to the Ministry of Justice. Anyone can choose to be married by the Ministry of Justice in the Kingdom of Bahrain. By request to the church, these records can be authenticated by the Office of the Director of the Law Courts of Bahrain. Between 1930 and 1971, all Christian marriages were recorded by the British Political Agent. Information from these records can be obtained from the British Embassy, P.O. Box 114, Manama, State of Bahrain.

Divorce

Available. Write to: The Chief Justice of the Sharia Court, Bahrain Ministry of Justice, P.O. Box 450, Manama, state of Bahrain. Copies of certificates of divorce, granted in accordance with Islamic law, can be obtained by the same procedure as for marriages.

Note:

(A) The transliteration of Arabic names into English is not scientific. The spelling on one document is thus often at variance with the spelling on another.
(B) The construction of a person's name can also vary. The first name is always the person's given name. The second name is always the person's father's name, and it should be the same for brothers and sisters. If a third name is used, it can be either the person's grandfather's name or the person's family name. Some people use four names, i.e. given name, father's name, grandfather's name and family name.
(C) The word "bin" (meaning "son of") can be used or not without changing the person's identity.
(D) Titles such as "Shaikh" or "Sayed" are used in some documents but are not actually part of the person's name.

 

Adoption Certificates

Unavailable.

ALL /
ALL /
Identity Card

Unavailable.

Police, Court, Prison Records

Police Certificates

  • Available.
  • Fees: Bahrain Dinars 1.000 or U.S. $3.00. Checks and Bank Drafts are not accepted.
  • Document Name:  GOOD CONDUCT CERTIFICATE
  • Issuing Authority: General Directorate of Criminal Investigation (CID)
  • Special Seal(s) / Color / Format:  Unknown
  • Issuing Authority Personnel Title: Unknown
  • Registration Criteria: Unknown
  • Procedure for Obtaining:  Write to: General Directorate of Criminal Investigation (CID), P.O. Box 26698, Manama, State of Bahrain. The letter should contain a request for an application for a "Good Conduct Certificate" (Form PS/CID/6) with a statement explaining that the certificate is needed for immigration. Applicants should complete and return it to the CID at the above address along with the following:
    • Two matte (i.e., non-glossy) photographs;
    • A photocopy of the first four pages of the applicant's passport;(where all the biographic data is mentioned)
    • A photocopy of all previous Bahraini residence permits;
    • A letter from the applicant's current employer indicating that they have no objection to the applicant's departure.
  • If the applicant is living in Bahrain, the CID will schedule an interview, during which the applicant will be fingerprinted. The certificate is usually issued within 3-5 days after the interview. Records are somewhat unreliable prior to 1967. There is a fee for this service of Bahrain Dinars 1.000 or U.S. $3.00 for this service. Checks and Bank Drafts are not accepted.
  • Applicants no longer living in Bahrain should follow the same procedure and provide the same documentation. However, they will also have to provide a set of fingerprints taken by local police in their country of residence.
  • If there is a Bahrain Embassy where the applicant resides, they can contact the Bahrain Embassy to complete the necessary formalities.
  • Certified Copies Available: Unknown
  • Alternate Documents:  Unknown
    • Exceptions: Certificates are not issued for holders of visitor's visas. In order for CID to issue a Good Conduct Certificate, an applicant must currently have, or previously have had, a valid residence permit in Bahrain.
    • Comments:

       

  • Court Records

    Unavailable.

    Prison Records

    Available. Write to: Officer in Charge, Prison Division, Manama Prison, P.O. Box 13, Manama, State of Bahrain.

     

Military Records

Available. Write to: The Bahrain Defense Force, P.O. Box 245, Manama, State of Bahrain.

Passports & Other Travel Documents

Non-citizen residents of Bahrain can now obtain travel documents valid for two years provided they can documents their ties to Bahrain. Holders of these travel documents may also be able to obtain multiple re-entry permits valid for up to two years in Bahrain or at Bahraini embassies and consulates abroad. Posts may issue visas into these travel documents only if the alien possessing the documents also holds a re-entry permit to Bahrain or some other country valid for at least 6 months from the date of expiration of the alien's contemplated stay in the United States.

Other Records

Not applicable.

Visa Issuing Posts

Manama, Bahrain (Embassy)

Bldg. 979, Road no. 3119, Zinj District

Tel: 00973-1724-2700

 

Visa Services

All visa categories for all of Bahrain.

Foreign Consular Office Contact Information

Washington, DC (202) 342-1111 (202) 362-2192

New York, NY (212) 223-6200 (212) 223-6206

Assistance for U.S. Citizens

U.S. Embassy Manama
Building No. 979
Road 3119, Block 331
Zinj District
Manama
Kingdom of Bahrain
Telephone
+(973) 1724-2700
Emergency
+(973) 1727-5126
Fax
+(973) 1727-2594; 1725-6242 (Consular Section)
Bahrain Country Map

Learn about your destination
Additional Information for Reciprocity

Although care has been taken to ensure the accuracy, completeness and reliability of the information provided, please contact the U.S. Embassy or Consulate where you plan to apply if you believe this information is in error or if you have further questions.

Country Information

Bahrain
Kingdom of Bahrain
ALL /
ALL /
Embassy Messages

Manama

 

Quick Facts
PASSPORT VALIDITY:

6 months

BLANK PASSPORT PAGES:

1 page per entry stamp

TOURIST VISA REQUIRED:

Yes

VACCINATIONS:

None

CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR ENTRY:

$10,000

CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR EXIT:

None

ALL /
ALL /
Embassies and Consulates

U.S. Embassy Manama

Building No. 979
Road 3119, Block 331
Zinj District
Manama
Kingdom of Bahrain
Telephone: +(973) 1724-2700
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +(973) 1727-5126
Fax: +(973) 1727-2594; 1725-6242 (Consular Section)
The workweek in Bahrain is Sunday through Thursday.

ALL /
ALL /
Destination Description

See the Department of State’s Fact Sheet on Bahrain for information on U.S. – Bahrain relations.

ALL /
ALL /
Entry, Exit and Visa Requirements

Visit the Embassy of Bahrain website for the most current visa information.

Requirements for Entry:

  • Passport valid for at least six months
  • Visa

Types of visas:

Tourist visas: Apply for two-week tourist visas online on the Bahraini government website or upon arrival in the country. Ask for five-year multiple entry visas at Bahraini embassies

U.S. Diplomatic and Official passport holders: Request a no-fee two-week visa upon arrival.

Journalism visas: Journalists must have a journalism visa.

Be prepared to answer questions regarding your purpose of travel. Be sure to leave Bahrain before your visa expires; otherwise, you face heavy fines and possible arrest and/or deportation.

Working in Bahrain: To work in Bahrain you must have the following:

  • Valid work visa
  • Residency permit
  • Local identification card

Consult Bahrain’s Labor Market Regulatory Authority for complete details.

Obtain a valid work permit and signed employment contract before arriving in Bahrain. The contract should clearly state:

  • Provisions related to relocation expenses
  • Type of housing and number of occupants
  • Any visa fees to be paid by the employee
  • Salary payment schedule and any salary penalties
  • Terms of probation period
  • Who pays transportation expenses, should the contract be terminated

Do not work in Bahrain on a tourist visa. Even if employers advise you otherwise, Bahraini authorities will hold you personally liable if you do not have a valid work permit. 

Authenticating Documents for Your Employment Permit

Have all required documents authenticated before arriving. The U.S. Embassy in Manama cannot provide this service. For information on authentication of U.S. issued documents, see Authentication of American Academic Credentials for Use Abroad and contact our Office of Authentications.

Employer Retention of U.S. Passports: It is illegal, but a common practice, for Bahraini employers to retain your passport. Such retention could delay your travel or grant undue leverage to your employer in case of a dispute. U.S. passports are the property of the U.S. government. 

While many U.S. citizens have a positive experience working in Bahrain, we have received a number of complaints from U.S. citizens employed in the education sector.

Travel Bans: If you have unpaid debt or are involved in legal proceedings (including debt, labor, or custody disputes), authorities may not allow you to leave Bahrain until the issue is resolved, even if takes several years to close the case. Should this happen, the U.S. Embassy cannot pay your legal expenses or living expenses.

Residents intending to return to Bahrain: Be sure to obtain a re-entry permit valid for at least six months before leaving. Renew visas and residency permits through the General Directorate of Nationality, Passports, and Residence (GDNPR).

HIV/AIDS Restrictions: All declared HIV-positive foreigners  risk immediate deportation; deportation may be applied to all “communicable diseases.” Although you are not required to declare HIV status upon arrival, the government revokes visas of non-Bahrainis who are HIV positive. Please verify this information with the Embassy of the Kingdom of Bahrain before traveling. 

HIV travelers: Carry enough medication to cover your intended stay, since obtaining drugs locally could be difficult and/or lead to deportation. Pharmacies reportedly will not sell AIDS drugs to non-Bahraini citizens without a permit from the Ministry of Health.  Similarly, health facilities and pharmacies are required to report HIV-positive foreigners to the Ministry of Health.

Dual nationality: Bahrain does not recognize dual nationality, though some exceptions are made. In early 2017 Bahrain launched a campaign requiring all dual nationals to declare and register their other nationality with the government.   

If you are eligible for Bahraini citizenship, authorities will not issue you a Bahraini passport unless you relinquish your U.S. passport.

Find information on dual nationality, prevention of international child abduction, and customs regulations  on our website.

ALL /
ALL /
Safety and Security

Potential for Terrorist Activity: Spontaneous and violent anti-government demonstrations may occur, particularly at night and on weekends. Such activity is usually confined to specific locations and is rarely widespread.

Demonstrations sometimes result in blocked highways and unofficial checkpoints. Participants occasionally throw rocks, Molotov cocktails, and utilize improvised explosive devices and shotgun-like projectile launchers. The Ministry of Interior maintains official checkpoints and routinely uses tear gas, stun grenades, and other crowd dispersal techniques against demonstrators.

Avoid all demonstrations. To date, no U.S. citizens have been specifically targeted during protest activity. Local media outlets have sometimes expressed anti-U.S. sentiment, and demonstrators have occasionally burned U.S. flags. 

In December 2016, the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) released a video statement urging its supporters to launch attacks in Bahrain, including those targeting U.S. military personnel. The group also called for attacks against the Shiite majority.

Remain alert to local security developments.  For assistance, call the local police at 999.

Restricted travel: The U.S. Embassy restricts its employees from traveling to specific areas where protest activity is more likely and advises all U.S. citizens to do the same. 

See the Embassy’s website for travel restrictions and security updates.

Stay informed about local events through the local media.

Crime: The crime rate in Bahrain is low, and violent crime is rare. Thieves are active in the old market area.

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

Victims of Crime: Local authorities are responsible for investigating and prosecuting the crime. Report crimes to the local police at 999 and contact the U.S. Embassy, if you need assistance. During business hours, call +(973) 1724-2700; after hours, call +(973) 1727-5126.  

U.S. citizen victims of sexual assault should first contact the local police and then follow up with the U.S. Embassy. 

U.S. citizen victims of domestic violence may contact the U.S. Embassy for assistance.

See our webpage on help for U.S. victims of crime overseas.

Emergency Numbers:

Police/Fire Department/Ambulance/ National Emergency call center – 999
Fire accidents – 997
Casualty bureau – 990
Criminal Investigations (CID) – 992
Coast Guard (CGD) – 994
Traffic police – 199
International Emergency Number – 112

Traffic Hotline:

Call center –  17872287
Main Switchboard – 17872222

Police Stations:

East Riffa Police Station – 1777 3158
West Riffa Police Station –  1766 4606
Exhibition Road Police Station – 1755 0629
Hawak Police Station –  1784 9009
Hidd Police Station  – 1767 1212
Hoora Police Station – 1729 1555
Naim Police Station –  1725 8210
Samaheej Police Station – 1733 4401
Umm-Al Hasam Police Station –  1772 8229
Zallaq Police Station –  1763 1211

Household Emergencies – 8000 1810

Violence against Women –  1787 0302

Other Useful Numbers:

National contact number for government related appointments –  8000 8001
Civil Aviation Department, Bahrain – 1732 1100
Bahrain International Airport – 1732 1997

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
  • 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
  • replace a stolen or lost passport

For further information:

ALL /
ALL /
Local Laws & Special Circumstances

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

Furthermore, some laws are also prosecutable in the U.S., regardless of local law. For examples, see our website on crimes against minors abroad and the Department of Justice website.

Arrest Notification: If you are arrested or detained, ask police or prison officials to notify the U.S. Embassy immediately. Embassy officials can more readily visit you while you are still being detained at a police station than after you have been transferred to a prison. See our webpage for further information and our embassy website for a list of local lawyers.

Extra-marital sexual relations are a criminal offense.  If a child is born out of wedlock, obtaining a civil birth certificate is extremely difficult and frequently leads to the deportation of the mother and the child.  Without a birth certificate, obtaining a passport for the child’s travel can be difficult.  Additionally, transmission of citizenship is typically through the father which could lead to the child being stateless.  In the case of U.S. citizen mothers, the embassy may be able to document such children as U.S. citizens or may be able to process an immigrant visa petition.  Consult the embassy for options, but it is advisable to depart the country before giving birth.

Drug Usage: Penalties for possessing, using, or trafficking in illegal drugs are severe, including long jail sentences and heavy fines. You can be arrested for public drunkenness and disorderly behavior.

Driving under the Influence: Penalties include imprisonment and/or heavy fines. Any sign of alcohol consumption may be taken as evidence of driving under the influence.

Using vulgar language or hand gestures can result in heavy fines or criminal charges.

It is illegal to photograph certain buildings in Bahrain.

Carry a form of identification with you at all times, such as a passport, local ID card (CPR card), or driver’s license.

Child Abduction and Custody Cases: There are no treaties in force between Bahrain and the United States concerning international parental child abduction and custody cases. Bahraini courts may ignore child custody decrees issued in the United States. 

Sharia law generally controls custody issues. Decisions are often based on age and gender of the children rather than the U.S. “best interest of the child” standard.

Social Services: Information concerning family and child services can be found on the Ministry of Labor and Social Development’s website.

Divorce: Seek legal counsel and ascertain your rights in Bahrain before visiting the country if you are a U.S. citizen divorced from/in the process of divorcing a Bahraini citizen. This is particularly important regarding child custody issues. See our website on Bahrain and international child abduction for additional information. 

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

LGBTI Travelers: While the law does not criminalize consensual same-sex sexual activity between people over 21, lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender activities are not accepted socially.

See our LGBTI Travel Information page and section 6 of our Human Rights Report for further details.

Travelers Who Require Accessibility Assistance: Transportation is not wheelchair-accessible, and sidewalks and crosswalks—even in large cities—are not accessible.

Outside of the more expensive hotels in the capital, virtually no hotels offer accessible accommodations.

There are very few accessible restaurants, shops, or historical sites. Handicap-accessible bathrooms, even in major hospitals, are generally not available.

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

Women Travelers: Women traveling alone should maintain vigilance. Review this report’s section on Local Law, as well as our travel tips for Women Travelers.

ALL /
ALL /
Health

Medical Care: Basic medical care is available through public and private hospitals, as well as private clinics. In most facilities the care is below U.S. standards. Public hospitals have trauma and ICU units. Most postoperative and trauma centers do not provide adequate pain management.  People with chronic general medical or mental health conditions and HIV-related health issues may not be able to obtain appropriate emergency care in Bahrain. American privacy and confidentiality laws may not apply to Bahraini medical providers.

Prescription Medication: Check with Customs Affairs of Bahrain to ensure your medications are legal in the country. Most narcotic painkillers, stimulants, and controlled sedatives/hypnotics are not easily available, and may be illegal in many cases.  Always carry your prescription medication in original packaging along with your doctor’s prescription. 

Payment: Payment at all medical facilities is due at the time of service. Some hospitals have very limited direct billing capability for certain insurance carriers. Billing and insurance practices vary among the medical facilities.

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 (our webpage) to cover medical evacuation.

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

Further health information:

ALL /
ALL /
Travel and Transportation

Road Conditions and Safety: Road travel is generally safe. Highways and major roads in northern Bahrain are wide and well maintained. Roads in villages and older parts of Manama and Muharraq are narrow, congested and twisting.

Traffic Laws: Traffic moves on the right. At roundabouts (traffic circles), cars within the traffic circle have right of way over those attempting to enter.

Drivers frequently speed in spite of stiff penalties, including fines and possible imprisonment.

Police can detain drivers for traffic violations.

It is illegal to use a cell phone while driving, and drivers are required to wear seat belts.

Traffic is more congested on the weekends with an influx of vehicles from neighboring countries whose drivers are less disciplined than local residents.

Traffic Accidents: Except for minor accidents, do not move the vehicle until you have filed a report with the traffic police. This applies to single-car accidents as well. If you move the car, insurance companies may deny coverage.

For minor accidents with no injuries, move your vehicle off the road to avoid further accidents. You do not have to wait at the scene for the police.

Filing Accident Reports: You must file a report within 24 hours of the accident.

  • For minor accidents with no injuries, call 199. 
  • For accidents involving injury, call 999.
  • For the traffic department’s main switchboard, call 1787-2222. 

If an accident results in legal proceedings, both drivers may be prohibited from leaving the country until the matter is resolved. Please refer to our Road Safety page for more information.

Public Transportation: Bahrain has a newly expanded public bus system that extends throughout most of the country. A car is still needed to access most locations.

Taxis are available in Bahrain and are typically arranged by phone. Uber also operates in Bahrain.  

AVIATION SAFETY OVERSIGHT: As there is no direct commercial air service to the United States by carriers registered in Bahrain, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has not assessed the government of Bahrain’s Civil Aviation Authority for compliance with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) aviation safety standards.

See  FAA’s safety assessment page for further information.

MARITIME TRAVEL: Mariners planning travel to Bahrain should also check:

U.S. maritime advisories and alerts  

U.S. Coast Guard homeport website

NGA broadcast warnings (select “broadcast warnings”)

Visit Bahrain’s national tourist office and Ministry of Transportation

Hague Convention Participation
Party to the Hague Abduction Convention?
No
U.S. Treaty Partner under the Hague Abduction Convention?
No
What You Can Do
Learn how to respond to abductions FROM the US
Learn how to respond to abductions TO the US
ALL /
ALL /
Embassies and Consulates

U.S. Embassy Manama

Building No. 979
Road 3119, Block 331
Zinj District
Manama
Kingdom of Bahrain
Telephone: +(973) 1724-2700
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +(973) 1727-5126
Fax: +(973) 1727-2594; 1725-6242 (Consular Section)
The workweek in Bahrain is Sunday through Thursday.

ALL /
ALL /
General Information

For information concerning travel to Bahrain, including information about the location of the U.S. Embassy, the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program, entry/exit requirements, safety and security, crime, medical facilities and health information, traffic safety, road conditions and aviation safety, please see country-specific information for Bahrain.

The U.S. Department of State reports statistics and compliance information for individual countries in the Annual Report on International Parental Child Abduction (IPCA).  The report is located here.

 

ALL /
ALL /
Hague Abduction Convention

Bahrain is not a signatory to the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction (Hague Abduction Convention), nor are there any bilateral agreements in force between Bahrain and the United States concerning international parental child abduction.

ALL /
ALL /
Return

Legal systems and laws pertaining to custody, divorce, and parental abduction vary widely from country to country.  Parents are encouraged to consult with an attorney who specializes in family law in Bahrain and who can provide accurate legal guidance that is specific to their circumstances. 

 

The Department of State’s Bureau of Consular Affairs, Directorate for Overseas Citizens Services, Office of Children’s Issues provides assistance in cases of international parental child abduction.  For U.S. citizen parents whose children have been wrongfully removed to or retained in countries that are not U.S. partners under the Hague Abduction Convention, the Office of Children’s Issues can provide information and resources about country-specific options for pursuing the return of or access to an abducted child.  The Office of Children’s Issues may also coordinate with appropriate foreign and U.S. government authorities about the welfare of abducted U.S. citizen children.  Parents are strongly encouraged to contact the Department of State for assistance.

Contact information:

United States Department of State
Bureau of Consular Affairs
CA/OCS/CI
SA-17, 9th Floor
Washington, DC 20522-1709
Telephone:  1-888-407-4747
Outside the United States or Canada: 1-202-501-4444
Website:  travel.state.gov
Email: AskCI@state.gov

 

Parental child abduction may be a crime in Bahrain depending on the circumstances of the child's removal.  Parents are encouraged to consult with an attorney in Bahrain to determine if their particular case qualifies as a crime under Bahraini law.

Parents may wish to consult with an attorney in the United States and in the country to which the child has been removed or retained to learn more about how filing criminal charges may impact a custody case in the foreign court.  Please see Possible Solutions - Pressing Criminal Charges for more information.  

 

 

ALL /
ALL /
Visitation/Access

Legal systems and laws pertaining to custody, divorce, and parental abduction vary widely from country to country.  Parents are encouraged to consult with an attorney who specializes in family law in Bahrain and who can provide accurate legal guidance that is specific to their circumstances.

The Office of Children’s Issues may be able to assist parents seeking access to children who have been wrongfully removed from or retained outside the United States.   Parents who are seeking access to children who were not wrongfully removed from or retained outside the United States should contact the U.S. Embassy in Bahrain for information and possible assistance.

ALL /
ALL /
Retaining an Attorney

Neither the Office of Children’s Issues nor consular officials at the U.S. Embassy in Bahrain are authorized to provide legal advice.

The U.S. Embassy in Manama, Bahrain posts a list of attorneys, including those who specialize in family law.

This list is provided as a courtesy service only and does not constitute an endorsement of any individual attorney. The Department of State assumes no responsibility or liability for the professional ability or reputation of, or the quality of services provided by, the persons or firms included in this list. Professional credentials and areas of expertise are provided directly by the lawyers.

ALL /
ALL /
Mediation

The Department of State is not aware of any government agencies or non-governmental organizations that offer mediation services in international parental child abduction cases in Bahrain.

Exercising Custody Rights

While travelling in a foreign country, you are subject to the laws of that country. It is important for parents to understand that, although a left-behind parent in the United States may have custody or visitation rights pursuant to a U.S. custody order, that order may not be valid and enforceable in the country in which the child is located.  For this reason, we strongly encourage you to speak to a local attorney if planning to remove a child from a foreign country without the consent of the other parent.  Attempts to remove your child to the United States may:

  • Endanger your child and others;
  • Prejudice any future judicial efforts; and
  • Could result in your arrest and imprisonment.

The U.S. government cannot interfere with another country’s court or law enforcement system.

To understand the legal effect of a U.S. order in a foreign country, a parent should consult with a local attorney in the country in which the child is located.  

For information about hiring an attorney abroad, see our section on Retaining a Foreign Attorney. 

Although we cannot recommend an attorney to you, most U.S. Embassies have lists of attorneys available online. Please visit the local U.S. Embassy or Consulate website for a full listing.

For more information on consular assistance for U.S. citizens arrested abroad, please see our website.

Country officers are available to speak with you Monday - Friday, 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.  For assistance with an abduction in progress or any emergency situation that occurs after normal business hours, on weekends, or federal holidays, please call toll free at 1-888-407-4747. See all contact information.

DISCLAIMER: The information in this flyer is provided for general information only, is not intended to be legal advice, and may change without notice. Questions involving interpretation of law should be addressed to an attorney licensed in the relevant jurisdiction. 

 

Hague Convention Participation
Hague Adoption Convention Country?
No
Are Intercountry Adoptions between this country and the United States possible?
Is this country a U.S. Hague Partner?
ALL /
ALL /
Hague Convention Information

Bahrain is not party to the Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption (Hague Adoption Convention). Therefore, when the Hague Adoption Convention entered into force for the United States on April 1, 2008, intercountry adoption processing for Bahrain did not change.

The Department of State does not maintain files on the adoption process in Bahrain because adoptions from Bahrain are rare. Fewer than five adoptions by American citizen parents have taken place in over a decade. Please visit the Department's Country Specific Information sheets for more information on travelling to Bahrain and the U.S. Embassy Manama's website for information on consular services.

ALL /
ALL /
Who Can Adopt
null
ALL /
ALL /
Who Can Be Adopted
null
ALL /
ALL /
How to Adopt
null
ALL /
ALL /
Traveling Abroad
null
ALL /
ALL /
After Adoption
null
ALL /
ALL /
Contact Information
null

Reciprocity Schedule

Select a visa category below to find the visa issuance fee, number of entries, and validity period for visas issued to applicants from this country*/area of authority.

Explanation of Terms

Visa Classification: The type of nonimmigrant visa you are applying for.

Fee: The reciprocity fee, also known as the visa issuance fee, you must pay. This fee is in addition to the nonimmigrant visa application fee (MRV fee).

Number of Entries: The number of times you may seek entry into the United States with that visa. "M" means multiple times. If there is a number, such as "One", you may apply for entry one time with that visa.

Validity Period: This generally means the visa is valid, or can be used, from the date it is issued until the date it expires, for travel with that visa. If your Validity Period is 60 months, your visa will be valid for 60 months from the date it is issued.

Visa Classifications
A
B
C
D
E
F
G
H
I
J
K
L
M
N
O
P
Q
R
S
T
U
V
 
Visa
Classification
Fee Number
of Entries
Validity
Period
A-1 None Multiple 60 Months
A-2 None Multiple 60 Months
A-3 1 None Multiple 24 Months
B-1 None Multiple 60 Months
B-2 None Multiple 60 Months
B-1/B-2 None Multiple 60 Months
C-1 None Multiple 60 Months
C-1/D None Multiple 60 Months
C-2 None Multiple 12 Months
C-3 None Multiple 60 Months
CW-1 11 None Multiple 12 Months
CW-2 11 None Multiple 12 Months
D None Multiple 60 Months
E-1 2 No Treaty N/A N/A
E-2 2 None One 3 Months
E-2C 12 None One 3 Months
F-1 None Multiple 60 Months
F-2 None Multiple 60 Months
G-1 None Multiple 60 Months
G-2 None Multiple 60 Months
G-3 None Multiple 60 Months
G-4 None Multiple 60 Months
G-5 1 None Multiple 24 Months
H-1B None Multiple 60 Months 3
H-1C None Multiple 60 Months 3
H-2A None N/A N/A3
H-2B None N/A N/A3
H-2R None Multiple 60 Months 3
H-3 None Multiple 60 Months 3
H-4 None Multiple 60 Months 3
I None Multiple 60 Months
J-1 4 None Multiple 60 Months
J-2 4 None Multiple 60 Months
K-1 None One 6 Months
K-2 None One 6 Months
K-3 None Multiple 24 Months
K-4 None Multiple 24 Months
L-1 None Multiple 60 Months
L-2 None Multiple 60 Months
M-1 None Multiple 60 Months
M-2 None Multiple 60 Months
N-8 None Multiple 60 Months
N-9 None Multiple 60 Months
NATO 1-7 N/A N/A N/A
O-1 None Multiple 60 Months 3
O-2 None Multiple 60 Months 3
O-3 None Multiple 60 Months 3
P-1 None Multiple 60 Months 3
P-2 None Multiple 60 Months 3
P-3 None Multiple 60 Months 3
P-4 None Multiple 60 Months 3
Q-1 6 None Multiple 15 Months 3
R-1 None Multiple 60 Months
R-2 None Multiple 60 Months
S-5 7 None One 1 Month
S-6 7 None One 1 Month
S-7 7 None One 1 Month
T-1 9 None One 6 Months
T-2 None One 6 Months
T-3 None One 6 Months
T-4 None One 6 Months
T-5 None One 6 Months
T-6 None One 6 Months
TD 5 N/A N/A N/A
U-1 None Multiple 48 Months
U-2 None Multiple 48 Months
U-3 None Multiple 48 Months
U-4 None Multiple 48 Months
U-5 None Multiple 48 Months
V-1 None Multiple 120 Months
V-2 None Multiple 120 Months 8
V-3 None Multiple 120 Months 8
ALL /
ALL /
Country Specific Footnotes

Although care has been taken to ensure the accuracy, completeness and reliability of the information provided, please contact the U.S. Embassy or Consulate where you plan to apply if you believe this information is in error or if you have further questions.

ALL /
ALL /
Visa Category Footnotes
  1. The validity of A-3, G-5, and NATO 7 visas may not exceed the validity of the visa issued to the person who is employing the applicant. The "employer" would have one of the following visa classifications:

    • A-1
    • A-2
    • G-1 through G-4
    • NATO 1 through NATO 6

  2. An E-1 and E-2 visa may be issued only to a principal alien who is a national of a country having a treaty, or its equivalent, with the United States. E-1 and E-2 visas may not be issued to a principal alien if he/she is a stateless resident. The spouse and children of an E-1 or E-2 principal alien are accorded derivative E-1 or E-2 status following the reciprocity schedule, including any reciprocity fees, of the principle alien’s country of nationality.  

    Example: John Doe is a national of the country of Z that has an E-1/E-2 treaty with the U.S. His wife and child are nationals of the country of Y which has no treaty with the U.S. The wife and child would, therefore, be entitled to derivative status and receive the same reciprocity as Mr. Doe, the principal visa holder.  

  3. The validity of H-1 through H-3, O-1 and O-2, P-1 through P-3, and Q visas may not exceed the period of validity of the approved petition or the number of months shown, whichever is less.

    Under 8 CFR §214.2, H-2A and H-2B petitions may generally only be approved for nationals of countries that the Secretary of Homeland Security has designated as participating countries. The current list of eligible countries is available on USCIS's website for both H-2A and H-2B visas. Nationals of countries not on this list may be the beneficiary of an approved H-2A or H2-B petition in limited circumstances at the discretion of the Department of Homeland Security if specifically named on the petition.  

    Derivative H-4, L-2, O-3, and P-4 visas, issued to accompanying or following-to-join spouses and children, may not exceed the validity of the visa issued to the principal alien.

  4. There is no reciprocity fee for the issuance of a J visa if the alien is a United States Government grantee or a participant in an exchange program sponsored by the United States Government.

    Also, there is no reciprocity fee for visa issuance to an accompanying or following-to-join spouse or child (J-2) of an exchange visitor grantee or participant.

    In addition, an applicant is eligible for an exemption from the MRV fee if he or she is participating in a State Department, USAID, or other federally funded educational and cultural exchange program (program serial numbers G-1, G-2, G-3 and G-7).

    However, all other applicants with U.S. Government sponsorships, including other J-visa applicants, are subject to the MRV processing fee.

  5. Under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), Canadian and Mexican nationals coming to engage in certain types of professional employment in the United States may be admitted in a special nonimmigrant category known as the "trade NAFTA" or "TN" category. Their dependents (spouse and children) accompanying or following to join them may be admitted in the "trade dependent" or "TD" category whether or not they possess Canadian or Mexican nationality. Except as noted below, the number of entries, fees and validity for non-Canadian or non-Mexican family members of a TN status holder seeking TD visas should be based on the reciprocity schedule of the TN principal alien.

    Canadian Nationals

    Since Canadian nationals generally are exempt from visa requirement, a Canadian "TN' or "TD" alien does not require a visa to enter the United States. However, the non-Canadian national dependent of a Canadian "TN", unless otherwise exempt from the visa requirement, must obtain a "TD" visa before attempting to enter the United States. The standard reciprocity fee and validity period for all non-Canadian "TD"s is no fee, issued for multiple entries for a period of 36 months, or for the duration of the principal alien's visa and/or authorized period of stay, whichever is less. See 'NOTE' under Canadian reciprocity schedule regarding applicants of Iranian, Iraqi or Libyan nationality.

    Mexican Nationals

    Mexican nationals are not visa-exempt. Therefore, all Mexican "TN"s and both Mexican and non-Mexican national "TD"s accompanying or following to join them who are not otherwise exempt from the visa requirement (e.g., the Canadian spouse of a Mexican national "TN") must obtain nonimmigrant visas.

    Applicants of Iranian, Iraqi or Libyan nationality, who have a permanent resident or refugee status in Canada/Mexico, may not be accorded Canadian/Mexican reciprocity, even when applying in Canada/Mexico. The reciprocity fee and period for "TD" applicants from Libya is $10.00 for one entry over a period of 3 months. The Iranian and Iraqi "TD" is no fee with one entry over a period of 3 months.

  6. Q-2 (principal) and Q-3 (dependent) visa categories are in existence as a result of the 'Irish Peace Process Cultural and Training Program Act of 1998'. However, because the Department anticipates that virtually all applicants for this special program will be either Irish or U.K. nationals, the Q-2 and Q-3 categories have been placed only in the reciprocity schedules for those two countries. Q-2 and Q-3 visas are available only at the Embassy in Dublin and the Consulate General in Belfast.

  7. No S visa may be issued without first obtaining the Department's authorization.

  8. V-2 and V-3 status is limited to persons who have not yet attained their 21st birthday. Accordingly, the period of validity of a V-2 or V-3 visa must be limited to expire on or before the applicant's twenty-first birthday.

  9. Posts may not issue a T-1 visa. A T-1 applicant must be physically present in the United States, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands or a U.S. port of entry, where he/she will apply for an adjustment of status to that of a T-1. The following dependents of a T-1 visa holder, however, may be issued a T visa at a U.S. consular office abroad:

    • T-2 (spouse)
    • T-3 (child)
    • T-4 (parent)
  10. The validity of NATO-5 visas may not exceed the period of validity of the employment contract or 12 months, whichever is less.

  11. The validity of CW-1 and CW-2 visas shall not exceed the maximum initial period of admission allowed by DHS (12 months) or the duration of the transition period ending December 31, 2014, whichever is shortest.

  12. The validity of E-2C visas shall not exceed the maximum initial period of admission allowed by DHS (24 months) or the duration of the transition period ending December 31, 2014, whichever is shortest.

 

 

ALL /
ALL /
General Documents

Please check back for update

Birth, Death, Burial Certificates

Birth

Available for all persons whose births occurred in a hospital. Such birth certificates can be obtained from the Birth and Death Records Office, Public Health Department, P.O. Box 12, Manama, State of Bahrain. The certificate is in both Arabic and English. Requirements are an application form (acquired from the above address), copies of parents' passports, name of child, date and place of birth. There may be a fee for this service.

For births that occurred at home and which were not recorded, an application form obtained from the above address should be completed and forwarded to the local court for attestation. Subsequently, a birth certificate is issued by the Public Health Department provided the applicant has furnished the same requirements as state above.

Death/Burial

Available. Write to: The Director of Public Health, Birth and Death Records Office, Public Health Department, P.O. Box 12, Manama, State of Bahrain. The same procedures and fees apply as for birth certificates. Burial certificates for Christians buried in Bahrain are available from the church responsible for the burial.

Marriage, Divorce Certificates

Marriage

Available. Marriages between Muslims are performed by local religious leaders according to Islamic law and custom. Certificates of marriages are kept on file with the appropriate Sharia Court. Requests for copies of these certificates should be addressed either to the Sunni or Shi'a Sharia Court, Ministry of Justice, P.O. Box 450, Manama, State of Bahrain. Each request should state the date of the marriage. These certificates are available only in Arabic. Marriages between two Christians can be performed in one of four designated Christina churches, each maintaining its own records, or they can be married at the Ministry of Justice. Requests for these records should be directed to the church where the marriage took place or to the Ministry of Justice. Anyone can choose to be married by the Ministry of Justice in the Kingdom of Bahrain. By request to the church, these records can be authenticated by the Office of the Director of the Law Courts of Bahrain. Between 1930 and 1971, all Christian marriages were recorded by the British Political Agent. Information from these records can be obtained from the British Embassy, P.O. Box 114, Manama, State of Bahrain.

Divorce

Available. Write to: The Chief Justice of the Sharia Court, Bahrain Ministry of Justice, P.O. Box 450, Manama, state of Bahrain. Copies of certificates of divorce, granted in accordance with Islamic law, can be obtained by the same procedure as for marriages.

Note:

(A) The transliteration of Arabic names into English is not scientific. The spelling on one document is thus often at variance with the spelling on another.
(B) The construction of a person's name can also vary. The first name is always the person's given name. The second name is always the person's father's name, and it should be the same for brothers and sisters. If a third name is used, it can be either the person's grandfather's name or the person's family name. Some people use four names, i.e. given name, father's name, grandfather's name and family name.
(C) The word "bin" (meaning "son of") can be used or not without changing the person's identity.
(D) Titles such as "Shaikh" or "Sayed" are used in some documents but are not actually part of the person's name.

 

Adoption Certificates

Unavailable.

ALL /
ALL /
Identity Card

Unavailable.

Police, Court, Prison Records

Police Certificates

  • Available.
  • Fees: Bahrain Dinars 1.000 or U.S. $3.00. Checks and Bank Drafts are not accepted.
  • Document Name:  GOOD CONDUCT CERTIFICATE
  • Issuing Authority: General Directorate of Criminal Investigation (CID)
  • Special Seal(s) / Color / Format:  Unknown
  • Issuing Authority Personnel Title: Unknown
  • Registration Criteria: Unknown
  • Procedure for Obtaining:  Write to: General Directorate of Criminal Investigation (CID), P.O. Box 26698, Manama, State of Bahrain. The letter should contain a request for an application for a "Good Conduct Certificate" (Form PS/CID/6) with a statement explaining that the certificate is needed for immigration. Applicants should complete and return it to the CID at the above address along with the following:
    • Two matte (i.e., non-glossy) photographs;
    • A photocopy of the first four pages of the applicant's passport;(where all the biographic data is mentioned)
    • A photocopy of all previous Bahraini residence permits;
    • A letter from the applicant's current employer indicating that they have no objection to the applicant's departure.
  • If the applicant is living in Bahrain, the CID will schedule an interview, during which the applicant will be fingerprinted. The certificate is usually issued within 3-5 days after the interview. Records are somewhat unreliable prior to 1967. There is a fee for this service of Bahrain Dinars 1.000 or U.S. $3.00 for this service. Checks and Bank Drafts are not accepted.
  • Applicants no longer living in Bahrain should follow the same procedure and provide the same documentation. However, they will also have to provide a set of fingerprints taken by local police in their country of residence.
  • If there is a Bahrain Embassy where the applicant resides, they can contact the Bahrain Embassy to complete the necessary formalities.
  • Certified Copies Available: Unknown
  • Alternate Documents:  Unknown
    • Exceptions: Certificates are not issued for holders of visitor's visas. In order for CID to issue a Good Conduct Certificate, an applicant must currently have, or previously have had, a valid residence permit in Bahrain.
    • Comments:

       

  • Court Records

    Unavailable.

    Prison Records

    Available. Write to: Officer in Charge, Prison Division, Manama Prison, P.O. Box 13, Manama, State of Bahrain.

     

Military Records

Available. Write to: The Bahrain Defense Force, P.O. Box 245, Manama, State of Bahrain.

Passports & Other Travel Documents

Non-citizen residents of Bahrain can now obtain travel documents valid for two years provided they can documents their ties to Bahrain. Holders of these travel documents may also be able to obtain multiple re-entry permits valid for up to two years in Bahrain or at Bahraini embassies and consulates abroad. Posts may issue visas into these travel documents only if the alien possessing the documents also holds a re-entry permit to Bahrain or some other country valid for at least 6 months from the date of expiration of the alien's contemplated stay in the United States.

Other Records

Not applicable.

Visa Issuing Posts

Manama, Bahrain (Embassy)

Bldg. 979, Road no. 3119, Zinj District

Tel: 00973-1724-2700

 

Visa Services

All visa categories for all of Bahrain.

Foreign Consular Office Contact Information

Washington, DC (202) 342-1111 (202) 362-2192

New York, NY (212) 223-6200 (212) 223-6206

Assistance for U.S. Citizens

U.S. Embassy Manama
Building No. 979
Road 3119, Block 331
Zinj District
Manama
Kingdom of Bahrain
Telephone
+(973) 1724-2700
Emergency
+(973) 1727-5126
Fax
+(973) 1727-2594; 1725-6242 (Consular Section)
Bahrain Country Map

Learn about your destination
Additional Information for Reciprocity

Although care has been taken to ensure the accuracy, completeness and reliability of the information provided, please contact the U.S. Embassy or Consulate where you plan to apply if you believe this information is in error or if you have further questions.