Australians planning to visit SL advised to exercise ‘high degree of caution’ amid election concerns

Tuesday, 28 May 2024 02:35 –      – 26

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The Australian Government yesterday updated its travel advisory issuing Level 2 amber colour warning, advising its nationals to ‘exercise a high degree of caution’ when travelling to Sri Lanka.


The advisory notes that Sri Lanka is due to hold its Presidential elections in 2024 where public demonstrations can occur throughout Sri Lanka and may become violent.

“We’ve reviewed our advice for Sri Lanka and continue to advise exercise a high degree of caution. Public demonstrations can occur throughout Sri Lanka and may become violent. Avoid areas impacted by demonstrations,” the updated travel advisory noted.

It recommends Australian nationals to avoid areas impacted by demonstrations. “Demonstrations can lead to disruptions to traffic and public transport. Follow the advice of local authorities and monitor the media for updates,” it reads.

To stay safe during periods of unrest, the advisory recommends avoiding protests and large gatherings.

Australian nationals are urged to avoid all protests and large public gatherings, monitor the news for planned or possible unrest, obey curfews, and seek local advice on safety and security and follow the instructions of security personnel.

“Public emergencies can be declared, and curfews imposed at short notice. Carry relevant travel and identification documents with you at all times,” it added.

The Australian Government also highlighted the ongoing risk of terrorist attacks in Sri Lanka, particularly noting they may target areas popular with foreigners and/or visited by tourists.

“Always carry travel and identification documents. Allow additional time to clear security checks, especially at airports,” it reads.

The travel advisory also warns Australians about several other factors related to travelling in Sri Lanka including, safety, health, local laws, travel and local contacts.

It mentioned that medical services in Colombo are below Australian standards and outside the capital, they are extremely limited. “There are shortages of some medicines in Sri Lanka. Mental health services are limited and below Australian standards. Dengue fever is a risk in Sri Lanka, with increased cases during the monsoon season. Use mosquito repellent. If you have a fever, seek medical help,” it reads.

The Australian Government also insists on ensuring comprehensive travel insurance. “If you can’t afford travel insurance, you can’t afford to travel. This applies to everyone, no matter how healthy and fit you are. If you’re not insured, you may have to pay many thousands of dollars up-front for medical care,” it reads.