Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex (LGBTI) travelers face unique challenges when traveling abroad. Laws and attitudes in some countries may affect safety and ease of travel. Legal protections vary from country to country. Many countries do not legally recognize same-sex marriage. More than seventy countries consider consensual same-sex sexual relations a crime, sometimes carrying severe punishment.
Research Your Destination
Visit our Traveler’s Checklist. Review our country information pages for information specific to LGBTI travelers (under Special Laws & Circumstances) and HIV/AIDS entry restrictions (under Entry, Exit & Visa Requirements).
Update Your Passport
Some travelers have reported difficulties entering a country on a passport bearing a name and photo that no longer corresponds to their gender presentation.
Pack Important Documents
LGBTI travelers should take copies of important documents, especially when traveling in countries where legal rights differ from those in the United States:
Consider buying travel insurance
Travel insurance can cover your costs during emergencies, including in cases where medical evacuation may be required. Some insurance companies have products specifically tailored to LGBTI travelers. Verify that any insurance you purchase will cover all traveling family members.
Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment
The Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) is a free service for U.S. citizens traveling to, or living in, a foreign country.
Here are some pointers for staying safe while abroad:
If You Need Help, Contact the U.S. Embassy or Consulate
The nearest U.S. embassy or consulate may be able to help if you run into problems overseas, especially if you feel you cannot approach local police or have had difficulties already.
Living Abroad with your Foreign National Spouse or Partner
Obtaining a U.S. Visa for your Foreign National Spouse or Fiancé
Adopting Children Overseas
Registering the Birth of your Child Born Abroad