Travel.State.Gov > International Travel > Country Information > Kosovo International Travel Information
See the Department of State’s Fact Sheet on Kosovo for information on U.S. - Kosovo relations.
U.S. citizens need a valid passport to enter Kosovo and may be asked to provide documentation stating the purpose of their visit.
§ No visa is required for tourist trips of up to 90 days within six months.
§ For work, study, or visits longer than 90 days within six months, you must apply for a temporary residence permit once in Kosovo at Pristina’s Division for Foreigners, Visa and Residence Permit. Please contact this office for additional information prior to arrival in Kosovo.
§ To apply for a temporary residence permit, you will need to provide proof of local health insurance and an official police background check report. See our Criminal Records checks page on our website. The U.S. Embassy cannot assist you in obtaining background checks, certificates of conduct, or fingerprints.
The U.S. Embassy cannot intervene on your behalf, obtain a background check report for you at the airport when applying for a visa, or assist if you are denied entry into Kosovo.
Kosovo law requires U.S. citizens to present photo identification (original ID, driver’s license or a passport) to prove identity when asked by an authorized official.
Additional Entry/Exit Requirements for Minors: Kosovo law requires unaccompanied children under 14, regardless of nationality, to have written, notarized permission from either both parents or legal guardians to depart Kosovo. Please review our website for more information on children’s issues.
Special note on travel to Serbia: If you wish to travel to Serbia after visiting Kosovo, you must have initially entered Kosovo through Serbia and have a valid, recent Serbian entry stamp. U.S. citizens entering Kosovo from a country other than Serbia, including from any other country via Pristina’s airport, will be barred from entering Serbia by Serbian border officials.
Visit the Embassy of Kosovo website for the most current visa information.
The U.S. Department of State is unaware of any HIV/AIDS entry restrictions for visitors to or foreign residents of Kosovo.
For most visitors, Kosovo remains a safe country. Petty street crime is the most common safety concern for U.S. citizens. The Kosovo Police, assisted by the EU Rule of Law mission (EULEX) and the NATO-led Kosovo Force (KFOR), are responsible for safety and security in Kosovo. The U.S. Embassy has no law enforcement authority.
Credible information indicates terrorist groups continue plotting possible attacks in Europe. European governments are taking action to guard against terrorist attacks; however, all European countries remain potentially vulnerable to attacks from transnational terrorist organizations. Exercise caution at festivals and other public events. If you are in a crowd and the security situation begins to deteriorate, leave the area immediately. Remain aware of your surroundings and have a plan for escape should an emergency arise. Monitor instructions from the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate.
U.S. citizens should avoid demonstrations, events involving political/ethnic/religious/social causes, or any other large groups. Demonstrations occur frequently, particularly in Pristina, often with little or no notice. Demonstrations can cause serious traffic disruptions or violent incidents. For more information, visit U.S. Embassy Kosovo’s alert and messages page.
Crime: Although violent crime against U.S. citizens is rare, remain cognizant of your profile in public and avoid drawing attention to yourself as a U.S. citizen. Theft and other petty street crimes do occur, particularly in areas where tourists and foreigners congregate.
Victims of Crime:
Victims of crime and sexual assault should go to a safe location, call the local police to report the incident, and then contact the U.S. Embassy.
Report crimes to the local police by dialing 192 and contact the U.S. Embassy at +383 (38) 5959-3000 (available 24/7 for emergencies). Police responsiveness to criminal reports varies greatly. Remember that local authorities are responsible for investigating and prosecuting the crime.
Kosovo’s Victims’ Advocacy and Assistance Office (VAO) has a 24-hour, toll-free, operational help line available at 0800 11 112. The VAO provides information and guidance, can help refer cases to appropriate institutions, and allows the general public/victims to report crimes. The VAO may also assist with medical exams, obtaining protection orders, or case status updates.
Additional in-depth information regarding safety and security in Kosovo can be found at: Kosovo 2019 Crime and Safety Report - OSAC.
Domestic Violence: U.S. citizen victims of domestic violence may contact the embassy 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.
Criminal Penalties: You are subject to local laws. If you violate local laws, even unknowingly, you may be expelled, arrested, or imprisoned.
Arrest Notification: If you are arrested or detained, ask police or prison officials to notify the U.S. Embassy immediately. See our webpage for further information.
The Kosovo criminal justice system does not function at a level consistent with Western standards. Lengthy detentions are common before and during judicial proceedings. The U.S. Embassy cannot expedite legal/court proceedings, secure releases, nor facilitate preferential conditions for detained U.S. citizens.
Potential for Natural Disasters: Kosovo is located in a seismically active area of the world making it susceptible to earthquakes. The best way to cope with an earthquake is to make preparations in advance. For information on what to do before and during a natural disaster, see:
Explosive devices: While de-mining programs have proven effective, unexploded ordnance and mines remain in some areas. Seek additional information for marked and unmarked contaminated areas with leftover mines and unexploded ordnances. Further, improvised explosive devices (IED) and Molotov cocktails have been used in Kosovo. Any suspicious item should be reported to the local authorities.
Climbing and Hiking: For outdoor activities, you should seek a local guide’s informed advice, maintain communication with your family and friends, and provide route and contact details to someone not travelling with you.
Athletes: We have received reports that some Kosovo sports clubs have allegedly not honored contracts for foreigners. Before signing a contract or relocating:
Property and Other Private or Commercial Disputes: The Government of the United States does not have jurisdiction over property or private disputes in Kosovo.
Faith-Based Travelers: See our following webpages for details:
LGBTI Travelers: There are no legal restrictions on same-sex sexual relations or the organization of LGBTI events in Kosovo. LGBTI individuals are protected by anti-discrimination laws, and there are no legal impediments to organizing LGBTI events. In practice, however, LGBTI persons face discrimination.
Travelers Who Require Accessibility Assistance. Individuals with disabilities may find accessibility and accommodation very different from in the United States. The Kosovo Constitution and legislation prohibit discrimination against persons with disabilities in employment, education, access to health care, and in the provision of other state services.
Women Travelers: See our travel tips for Women Travelers.
Medical facilities in Kosovo consist of the government-sponsored University Clinical Center and private medical clinics. Medical facilities outside Pristina have limited capabilities. Quality controls are lacking, services are very basic, hygiene may be insufficient, and medical care is below U.S. or Western European standards.
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 to cover medical evacuation.
If traveling with prescription medication, check with the Government of Kosovo to ensure the medication is legal in Kosovo. Always, carry your prescription medication in original packaging with your doctor’s prescription.
Vaccinations: Be up-to-date on all vaccinations recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The following CDC-recommended vaccines for children are not available in Kosovo: Hib, Rotavirus, Inactivated Polio, Pneumococcal, and Varicella.
Further health information:
Road Conditions and Safety: Road conditions in Kosovo are hazardous. Although some modern highways exist, most roads remain narrow and crowded and are used by a variety of vehicles, from NATO-KFOR armored personnel carriers to horse-drawn carts. Mountain roads can be narrow and poorly marked, lack guardrails, and quickly become dangerous in inclement weather. Dense fog can obscure visibility while driving.
Traffic Laws: Drivers with a blood alcohol level higher than 0.05 percent are considered intoxicated and will be arrested and prosecuted.
Public Transportation: Taxis are generally an inexpensive, safe, and reliable means of transportation. It is recommended to use established taxi companies instead of a personally-owned vehicle converted to a taxi. Make sure the taxi has a meter and that the driver activates it upon departure.
See our Road Safety page for more information.
Aviation Safety and Oversight: Pristina has a modern airport terminal and control tower. International airlines fly to Pristina on a regular basis. Flights can experience significant delays and/or cancellations due to weather conditions, especially during the winter. When heavy fog or smog is present, flights may be diverted to Skopje, North Macedonia or Tirana, Albania. Airlines typically bus passengers to the Pristina airport, which takes approximately 2 hours.
As there is no direct commercial air service to the United States by carriers registered in Kosovo, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has not assessed the Government of Kosovo’s Civil Aviation Authority for compliance with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) aviation safety standards. Kosovo is not a member of ICAO. Flights are frequently delayed or cancelled due to poor visibility as a result of heavy fog. Further information may be found on the FAA’s safety assessment page.