Travel Alert Status
Level 2: Exercise Increased Caution
Safety and Security
Public demonstrations occur throughout Albania, often with little or no notice, and can cause serious traffic disruptions. Although most demonstrations are peaceful, a demonstration in January 2011 turned violent and resulted in four deaths and injuries to many others, including Albania State Police Officers. Travelers should avoid areas where demonstrations are taking place. The use of roadblocks and/or the blocking of public facilities has occurred. U.S. citizens should stay up to date with media coverage of local events and be aware of their surroundings at all times. Information regarding demonstrations in Albania can be found on the U.S. Embassy Tirana website.
Organized criminal activity occurs in many regions of Albania. Corruption is also a concern in many areas. Police and news outlets often report small-scale, sporadic incidents of violence. Although there is no direct prohibition on the travel of U.S. Government employees within Albania, we encourage all travelers to avoid the southern town of Lazarat, where Albanian State Police and armed marijuana growers have recently engaged in violent altercations. Police ability to protect and assist travelers in and near Lazarat is limited.
Power outages occur frequently throughout Albania. Regular outages may also disrupt other public utilities, including water service, and interfere with traffic lights and the provision of normal business and public services.