Security Alert
May 17, 2024

Worldwide Caution

May 10, 2024

Information for U.S. Citizens in the Middle East

International Travel


Learn About Your Destination


Republic of Kazakhstan
Exercise normal precautions in Kazakhstan.

Reissued after periodic review with updates to the Travel Advisory Level.

Exercise normal precautions in Kazakhstan.

Read the country information page for additional information on travel to Kazakhstan.

If you decide to travel to Kazakhstan:


Embassy Messages


Quick Facts


Three months.




Yes, for stays longer than 30 days







Embassies and Consulates

U.S. Embassy Astana

Rakhymzhan Koshkarbayev Avenue 3
Astrana 010010
+(7) (7172) 70-21-00
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +(7) (7172) 70-21-00 (or 011-7-717-270-21-00 from the U.S.)
Fax: +(7) (7172) 70-22-80


U.S. Consulate General Almaty
Zholdasbekov Street 97
Almaty, Kazakhstan 050051
: +(7) (727) 250-49-01
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +7 727-250-76-12 (or 011-7-727-250-76-12 from the U.S.)

Destination Description

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

Entry, Exit and Visa Requirements

Please see the visa page of Kazakhstan’s Embassy in Washington for the most current visa information.

  • U.S. travelers may enter Kazakhstan without a visa for stays up to 30 days on each visit and may not stay more than a cumulative 90 days within a six-month period.
  • Individuals seeking to stay beyond the 90-day limit within a six-month period may apply for a 10-year Kazakh tourist or business visa. These visas contain restrictions, permitting maximum stays of 60 or 30 days per visit, depending on the type of visa.
  • Violating the authorized period of stay in Kazakhstan or engaging in activities inconsistent with your visa category may result in fines, imprisonment, and/or delays upon exit.

If you wish to apply for a permanent residency permit in Kazakhstan, prior to travel you should determine what documentation is required, including criminal background checks, and obtain any necessary authentication for those documents.

Russian Arrest Warrants: Kazakhstan and Russia have law enforcement cooperation agreements in place that obligate information sharing on certain security and law enforcement matters. Russian authorities may request that their Kazakh counterparts give increased scrutiny to former and current U.S. government and military personnel with prior work in Russia. Additionally, Russian law enforcement or security services may request that the Kazakh authorities detain U.S. citizens upon entry or exit based on existing mutual assistance agreements.

HIV/AIDS Entry Restrictions: Some HIV/AIDS-related restrictions exist for foreign residents and workers in Kazakhstan.

  • Visitors who receive a Kazakh work or residency visa must submit a health certification form, including negative HIV test results, with their application to the Migration Police in the city where they intend to work or reside in order to receive a work or residency permit after arriving in Kazakhstan. The results must be less than three months old.
  • The city HIV clinic in the place of registration can conduct the test or may certify test results performed abroad.
  • If the original test results are in a language other than Russian or Kazakh, they must be accompanied by an official, notarized translation.
  • Please verify this information with Kazakhstan’s Embassy in Washington.

Find information on dual nationalityprevention of international child abduction, and custom regulations on our websites.

Safety and Security

Demonstrations may occur. They may take place in response to political or economic issues, or on politically significant holidays. They may be accompanied by internet outages, and communications may be disrupted.

  • Demonstrations can be unpredictable. Avoid areas around protests and demonstrations. 
  • Even demonstrations intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational and escalate into violence.
  • Past demonstrations have ended in mass arrests.
  • Check local media for updates and traffic advisories.

Terrorism: Terrorist groups and those inspired by such organizations are intent on attacking U.S. citizens abroad. Terrorists are increasingly using less sophisticated methods of attack – including knives, firearms, and vehicles – to target crowds more effectively. Frequently, their aim is unprotected and/or vulnerable targets, such as:

  • High-profile public events (sporting contests, political rallies, demonstrations, holiday events, celebratory gatherings, etc.)
  • Hotels, clubs, and restaurants frequented by tourists
  • Places of worship
  • Schools
  • Parks
  • Shopping malls and markets
  • Public transportation systems (including subways, buses, trains, and scheduled commercial flights)

For more information, see our Terrorism page.

Crime: The most common crimes encountered by foreign visitors are purse snatching, pickpocketing, assaults, and robberies, although all of these incidents are rare. Be vigilant and do not carry large sums of money or valuables on the street. Financial fraud, such as ATM skimming, is prevalent.

The police sometimes conduct identification checks in public areas. Police are not required to demonstrate probable cause to detain individuals. Upon request, you must produce either a passport or an Embassy or Consulate-certified copy of your passport.

Kazakh security personnel may at times place foreign visitors under surveillance. Hotel rooms and telephones may be monitored, and personal possessions in hotel rooms may be searched.

Harassment and extortion by imposters, genuine law enforcement, and other officials does occur. Never voluntarily give your wallet to anybody. If pressured by a police officer, tell the officer that you will report the behavior to the U.S. Embassy or Consulate and to the officer’s supervisors. Try to obtain the officer's name, badge number, and license plate number, and note where and when the incident happened.

Do not use unmarked taxis. At the airport, do not leave with anyone who does not show pre-arranged identification, even if the person is holding a sign with your name.

The U.S. Mission in Kazakhstan is aware of isolated incidents when foreigners have been drugged, robbed, and physically assaulted at bars and nightclubs as well as in unmarked taxis.

International Financial Scams: See the Department of State and the FBI pages for information.

Victims of Crime: U.S. citizen victims of sexual assault are encouraged to contact the U.S. Embassy or Consulate for assistance. Report crimes to the local police at 102 and contact the U.S. Embassy at (+7) 7172-70-21-00 or the U.S. Consulate at (+7) 7272-50-49-01. Remember that local authorities are responsible for investigating and prosecuting crime.

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

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.
  • Provide general information regarding the victim’s role during and after the local investigation.
  • Provide a list of local attorneys.
  • Provide information on victim’s compensation programs in the United States.
  • 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.

Domestic Violence: U.S. citizen victims of domestic violence are encouraged to contact the Embassy or Consulate for assistance.

Tourism: The tourism industry is unevenly regulated, and safety inspections for equipment and facilities do not commonly occur. Hazardous areas/activities are not always identified with appropriate signage, and staff may not be trained or certified either by the host government or by recognized authorities in the field. In the event of an injury, appropriate medical treatment is typically available only in/near major cities. First responders are generally unable to access areas outside of major cities and to provide urgent medical treatment. U.S. citizens are encouraged to purchase medical evacuation insurance. See our webpage for more information on insurance providers for overseas coverage.

Local Laws & Special Circumstances

Criminal Penalties: When traveling to a foreign country, you are subject to that country’s local laws. If you violate local laws, even unknowingly, you may be expelled, arrested, or imprisoned. Individuals establishing a business or practicing a profession that requires additional permits or licensing should seek information from the competent local authorities, prior to practicing or operating a business.

  • Penalties for possessing, using, or trafficking in illegal drugs in Kazakhstan are severe, and convicted offenders can expect long jail sentences and heavy fines.
  • You may be taken in for questioning if you don’t have your passport with you or if you take pictures of certain buildings or other sensitive infrastructure.
  • Kazakh customs authorities may enforce strict regulations concerning the export of items such as antiques. Please see our Customs Information page for more information.
  • Kazakhstan has a zero-tolerance policy for driving under the influence of alcohol. You can be detained immediately if you are driving under the influence of alcohol.

Furthermore, certain acts of U.S. citizens overseas are prosecutable as crimes in the United States even if they are not illegal under the local law. For examples, see our website on crimes against minors abroad and the U.S. Department of Justice.

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

Counterfeit and Pirated Goods: Counterfeit and pirated goods are prevalent in many countries and they may be illegal according to the local laws. Counterfeit and pirated goods may pose significant risks to consumer health and safety. You may be subject to fines and/or have to give up the counterfeit and pirated goods if you bring them back to the United States. See the U.S. Customs and Border Protection website and the U.S. Department of Justice website for more information.

Faith-Based Travelers: Visitors to Kazakhstan engaging in missionary work or other religious activities must register with the Local Executive Authority office (Akimat) where the activities will take place. Kazakhstan also imposes restrictions on the importation of religious literature.

You may be fined and deported from Kazakhstan for performing any religious work without proper religious worker registration. Representatives of faith-based non-governmental organizations are considered subject to the registration requirement, even if their activities are not religious in nature.

International Volunteers:

LGBTQI+ Travelers: There are no legal restrictions on same-sex sexual relations or the organization of LGBTQI+ events in Kazakhstan; however, these events may be disrupted by local authorities or members of the public. Negative social attitudes towards LGBTQI+ persons are widespread, and local LGBTQI+ persons are sometimes subject to physical and verbal abuse, as well as unwanted attention from police. See our LGBTQI+ Travel Information page and section 6 of our Human Rights report for further details.

Travelers with Disabilities: The law in Kazakhstan prohibits discrimination against persons with disabilities, and the law is enforced. Social acceptance of persons with disabilities in public is not as prevalent as in the United States. Expect accessibility to be limited in public transportation, lodging, communication/information, and general infrastructure.

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

Women Travelers: Domestic violence is common and sexual assaults do occur, though there have not been recent reports of sexual assault committed against U.S. citizens. See our travel tips for women travelers.


Options for medical care are limited and well below U.S. standards. U.S. citizens often depart Kazakhstan for medical treatment, including many routine procedures. Some prescriptions and over-the-counter medicines are not widely available in Kazakhstan.

For emergency services in Kazakhstan call the Rescue Service by dialing 112. Other provider numbers are: 101 for Fire, 102 for Police, 103 for Emergency Medical Assistance, and 104 in the event of a gas leak.

Ambulance services are:

  • not present throughout the country and are unreliable in most areas except in major cities.
  • not equipped with state-of-the-art medical equipment.
  • not staffed with trained paramedics and often have little or no medical equipment.

Injured or seriously ill travelers may prefer to take a taxi or private vehicle to the nearest major hospital rather than wait for an ambulance.

The U.S. Embassy maintains a list of doctors and hospitals. We do not endorse or recommend any specific medical provider or clinic.

The Department of State does not pay medical bills. Be aware that U.S. Medicare/Medicaid does not apply overseas. Most hospitals and doctors overseas do not accept U.S. health insurance.

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. Visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for more information on type of insurance you should consider before you travel overseas. Doctors and hospitals often expect cash payment for health services.

We strongly recommend supplemental insurance to cover medical evacuation.

Always carry prescription medication in original packaging, along with your doctor’s prescription. Check with Kazakhstan’s National Center for Expertise to ensure the medication is legal in Kazakhstan.

Water Quality: In many areas, tap water does not meet U.S. standards for potability. Many restaurants and hotels serve tap water unless bottled water is specifically requested, and ice for drinks may be made using tap water. Bottled water and beverages are generally safe.  Be aware. Surface waters (streams, rivers, and ponds) are likely to be contaminated with animal waste. Try to avoid contact with these waters.

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

Further Health Information:

Air Quality: Visit AirNow Department of State for information on air quality at U.S. Embassies and Consulates.

Earthquakes: Kazakhstan is an earthquake-prone country. The U.S. Department of State has ranked the earthquake threat level within the Almaty region in particular as Level 4 (the highest level assigned). Building practices within Kazakhstan do not generally meet U.S. seismic standards. Local authorities do not have sufficient resources to respond to a large-scale disaster.

Adventure Travel 

  • Visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for more information about Adventure Travel

Travel and Transportation

Road Conditions and Safety: Roads in Kazakhstan may be in poor repair, especially in rural areas. Signage and lighting on roadways can be poor.

  • Potholes are common and are often dangerously deep.
  • Mountainous roads, including the highway between Almaty and Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, should be avoided at night or during poor weather.
  • Roads outside urban areas are often closed in winter months due to high winds and drifting snow.

Traffic Laws: Drivers sometimes disregard traffic signals, ignore lane markings, drive after excessive alcohol consumption (despite official “zero tolerance”), drive into oncoming lanes of traffic, and move at excessive speed – including during adverse weather. Pedestrians sometimes ignore crosswalks and dart in front of cars.

  • Visitors should drive defensively at all times, as many local drivers do not follow traffic laws. Road rage can be a problem, and we recommend a non-confrontational response to such behavior.
  • Accidents involving severe injury and/or death do occur.
  • Traffic police have reportedly stopped cars to extort bribes on city streets and at periodic checkpoints on major highways.

Public Transportation: Buses can be crowded and unsafe.

Due to the danger of theft or assault, be selective regarding which taxi you use, and always avoid entering a cab that already contains persons other than the driver. The U.S. Mission highly discourages hailing unlicensed private vehicles on the street and negotiating a fee with the driver on the spot. Ridesharing applications are widely available.

See our Road Safety page for more information. Also, visit the website of Kazakhstan’s national tourist office for additional information on road safety.

Aviation Safety Oversight: As there is no direct commercial air service to the United States by carriers registered in Kazakhstan, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has not assessed the government of Kazakhstan’s Civil Aviation Authority for compliance with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) aviation safety standards. Further information may be found on the FAA’s safety assessment page.

U.S. government personnel are prohibited from traveling for official duties on Kazakh airlines without prior approval, except for Air Astana and FlyArystan, due to safety concerns.

For additional travel information

International Parental Child Abduction

Review information about International Parental Child Abduction in Kazakhstan. For additional IPCA-related information, please see the International Child Abduction Prevention and Return Act (ICAPRA) report.

Last Updated: March 12, 2024

Travel Advisory Levels

Assistance for U.S. Citizens

U.S. Embassy Astana
Rakhymzhan Koshkarbayev Ave
No. 3
Astana 010010
+(7) (7172) 70-21-00
+(7) (7172) 70-21-00 (or 011-7-717-270-21-00 from the U.S.)
+(7) (7172) 70-22-80

Kazakhstan Map