Information for U.S. Citizens about a U.S. Government-Assisted Evacuation

Procedures for Evacuation:

Generally, individuals evacuated on a U.S. government-coordinated transport, including charter and military flights or ships, even if those transports are provided by another country’s government, must sign an Evacuee Manifest and Promissory Note (Form DS-5528) note prior to departure. The Department of State uses the Form DS-5528 to document who got on which transport, and it lets us know how to contact evacuees for billing purposes.

U.S. law requires that departure assistance to private U.S. citizens or third country nationals be provided “on a reimbursable basis to the maximum extent practicable.”  By taking a U.S. government coordinated transport, evacuees are obligated to repay the cost of their transportation. The amount billed to evacuees is based on the cost of a full fare economy flight, or comparable alternate transportation, to the designated destination(s) that would have been charged immediately prior to the events giving rise to the evacuation. Because different evacuation transports may go to different destinations, the cost of one transport may be different than another. We encourage people to leave on the first transport they are able and eligible to board.

How to Repay an Evacuation Loan:

You should make evacuation loan payments to the U.S. Department of State through the Comptroller and Global Financial Services (CGFS) office in Charleston, South Carolina. If payment is not made in full and on time, your loan may accrue interest charges and penalties.    

For more information about your evacuation loan, to repay your loan, or to request a payment plan, contact:

Comptroller and Global Financial Services
Phone: 1-800-521-2116 or 843-746-0592
Hours: Monday to Friday from 7:30 AM to 4:00 PM ET

U.S. Passports:

Until your loan is paid in full, you and anyone for whose evacuation loan you are financially responsible may be denied a regular U.S. passport. If you have an urgent need for travel, or have another requirement for a U.S. passport, please contact CGFS regarding payment options and the National Passport Information Center to discuss U.S. passport issuance options that may be available to you.

Last Updated: June 19, 2019