Bangladesh will vote in a general election on the 30th of December, with campaigning set to start on Monday 10th Decemeber. There has been tension and unrest surrounding previous votes, so travellers should remain aware of heightened volatility at this time.

Travel advice

If you are in the area, please consider the following –

  • Avoid demonstrations and large crowds. Be aware violence could occur without warning.
  • Review your travel risk management plan, so you know what to do in an emergency.
  • Make sure you have the contact information of your travel insurance company and your local embassy stored in a secure offline location.
  • Monitor local media. If you are using Twitter to search, add the term ‘filter:verified’ to the search bar to see results from verified accounts only.
  • If possible, set aside some supplies of food and bottled water.
  • Keep your devices charged.
  • Check in with friends and family.
  • If something does happen, contact the local embassy as soon as it is safe to do so.

Headlines and news coverage

Official travel advice

A very brief overview of official travel advice for Bangladesh. Click through on the links to read the advisories in full.

US State Department
  • Exercise increased caution in Bangladesh due to crime and terrorism. Some areas have increased risk. Read the entire Travel Advisory.
  • Reconsider travel to:
    • Dhaka due to crime and terrorism.
    • Southeast Bangladesh, including the Chittagong Hill Tracts, due to crime and terrorism.
  • Violent crime, such as armed robbery, assault, and rape, is widespread.
  • Terrorist groups continue plotting possible attacks in Bangladesh. Terrorists may attack with little or no warning, targeting tourist locations, transportation hubs, markets/shopping malls, restaurants, places of worship, and local government facilities. There is a possibility of terrorist attacks in urban areas despite the heavy police presence.
UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office
  • See our travel advice before travelling.
  • The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) advise against all but essential travel to the Chittagong Hill Tracts. This does not include the city of Chittagong or other parts of Chittagong Division.
  • You should exercise caution and consult the local authorities about the latest situation before visiting Ukhia and Teknaf. You may need to meet access requirements.
Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
  • Bangladesh overallreconsider your need to travel. Think seriously about whether you need to travel here due to the high level of risk. If you do travel, do your research and take a range of extra safety precautions, including having contingency plans. Check that your travel insurer will cover you.
New Zealand’s Safe Travels
  • Avoid non-essential travel to Bangladesh due to the heightened threat of terrorism and uncertain security situation.
Government of Canada
  • Exercise a high degree of caution in Bangladesh due to the threat of terrorism, as well as political demonstrations, nationwide hartals (enforced strikes) and violent clashes, which can occur at any time.
  • Avoid non-essential travel to Dhaka due to the threat of terrorism, crime and political demonstrations.
  • Avoid all travel to the Chittagong Hill Tracts region, due to politically motivated violence and kidnapping, as well as sporadic ethnic clashes.
Ireland’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
  • We advise you to exercise a high degree of caution. ‌

From the UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office

Voting in the Bangladesh national election is scheduled to take place on 30 December 2018, with formal campaigning due to begin on 10 December. Rallies with the potential for disorder, or clashes between groups and with law enforcement agencies, may take place throughout this period. You’re advised to avoid large gatherings and political rallies.

Please click through here for the full advisory.

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