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Summary

  • Exercise normal safety precautions in Romania. Use common sense and look out for suspicious behaviour, as you would in Australia, and monitor the media and other sources for information on local travelling conditions.
  • Be aware that Centrul Vechi (the old town in Bucharest) is an area that is prone to drink spiking. Do not leave food or drink unattended and avoid accepting snacks, beverages, gum or cigarettes from new acquaintances.  See Safety and security.
  • Check with your travel insurer to see if activities such as car hire, quad bikes, motorcycles, jet skis or "adventure sports" such as bungee jumping are covered by your insurance policy, and seek advice on any restrictions that may apply (such as if you are not licensed for those vehicles in Australia). See Safety and security.
  • There is an ongoing threat of terrorism in Europe. In the past, terrorist attacks have occurred in a number of European cities.
  • Australia has a Consulate in Bucharest, headed by an Honorary Consul, which can provide limited consular services (not including the issue of passports). Full consular services are available from the Australian Embassy in Athens.
  • See Travel Smart for general advice for all travellers.

Entry and exit

Visa and other entry and exit conditions (such as currency, customs and quarantine regulations) can change at short notice. Contact the nearest Embassy or Consulate of Romania for up-to-date information or visit the Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs website.

Special immigration regulations apply to the travel of Australian/Romanian dual national children under the age of 18. Regulations stipulate that all children travelling must be accompanied by an adult and carry a valid travel document (passport). Children travelling with only one parent or guardian will also be required to produce a legal document signed by any non-travelling parents, giving approval for the child's travel. Otherwise, where applicable, a death certificate of a parent registered on the birth certificate of the child, or a court order granting sole custody will have to be produced. The documents need to be translated into Romanian. Contact the nearest Embassy or Consulate of Romania for the most up to date information or visit the Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs website.

People travelling directly to or from a country outside the European Union (EU) carrying 10,000 Euros or more in cash (or the equivalent amount in another currency) are required to declare the cash at the place of their arrival or departure from the EU. Travellers failing to declare the cash or providing incomplete or incorrect information will incur a fine.
Make sure your passport has at least six months validity from your planned date of return to Australia.

Safety and security

Terrorism

There is an ongoing threat of terrorism in Europe.

In the past, terrorist attacks have occurred in a number of European cities. Targets have included public transport and transport hubs, and public places frequented by foreigners. In addition, a number of planned attacks have been disrupted by European security services in recent years.

Terrorism is a threat throughout the world. See our Terrorist Threat Worldwide bulletin.

Civil unrest and political tension

Avoid large protests and demonstrations as they may turn violent. Follow the advice of local authorities. 

Crime

The incidence of violent crime in Romania is low, but victims are sometimes injured. Petty crime, such as pickpocketing and bag snatching occurs, particularly near hotels, on public transport and in train stations. Organised groups of thieves, which may include children, operate mainly in public areas, particularly in transport centres, and are known to target foreigners.

Thefts and assaults occur on intercity trains. Don't leave your compartment unattended and ensure that the door is secured from the inside.

Don't walk alone after dark.

Be aware that Centrul Vechi (the old town in Bucharest) frequented by tourists is an area that is prone to drink spiking. Don't leave food or drink unattended and avoid accepting snacks, beverages, gum or cigarettes from new acquaintances.

Thefts from hotel rooms are common.

Financial scams, including credit card and ATM fraud are common. Use ATMs in controlled areas, such as within banks, shops and shopping centres. Keep your credit card in sight at all times when conducting transactions.

Internet fraud, including dating and marriage scams also occur in Romania. For more information see our International scams page.

There have been reports of thieves who present themselves as police officers asking for identification and wallets. Romanian police will not stop tourists at random to demand identification or wallets but may conduct checks when behaviour doesn't comply with local laws.

Money and valuables

Romania is predominantly a cash economy, but credit/debit card use is increasing. It is illegal to change money on the streets.

Your passport is a valuable document that is attractive to criminals who may try to use your identity to commit crimes. Always keep it in a safe place. You are required by Australian law to report a lost or stolen passport online or contact the nearest Australian Embassy, High Commission or Consulate as soon as possible.

Local travel

Since 2015, there has been a significant influx of asylum seekers into Europe. In some cases, police have been deployed to prevent asylum seekers from crossing borders and accessing transport. As a result, there has been localised disruption to some cross-border road and rail transport services. Be aware of the possibility of further disruption to transport services. Monitor the local media and other information from transport providers for up-to-date information. If travelling by road or train, allow additional time to cover any disruption, remain vigilant and follow the instructions of local authorities. Australians travelling across affected borders, either by road or rail, should make appropriate contingency plans to cover any disruption to travel plans.

Road travel

While major city streets and inter-city highways are generally in good condition, most roads are poorly maintained, badly lit and narrow. Additional driving hazards include poor driving standards, wandering livestock and horse-drawn carts on the roads. For further advice, see our Road travel page.

Traffic laws are strictly enforced and police conduct frequent checks, including radar speed checks. Observe road rules, including purchasing and displaying valid highway road-toll stickers. Children under 12 years of age may not be transported in the front seat of vehicles.

Check with your travel insurer to see if activities such as car hire, quad bikes, motorcycles, jet skis or "adventure sports" such as bungee jumping are covered by your insurance policy, and seek advice on any restrictions that may apply (such as if you are not licensed for those vehicles in Australia). Read more at our Travel insurance page.

Emergency roadside assistance and information may be reached by dialling 9271. The telephone number for the Romanian emergency services is 112. English speaking operators are available.

Use authorised taxis displaying appropriate registration, licensing and tariff information. Avoid offers of taxi services from touts at airports, train stations and other public places as you may be overcharged. Authorised taxis at airports can be found at ranks outside the arrivals terminal. Authorised taxis display an airport sign on both sides of the vehicle.

Accessibility

Accessibility for travellers with disabilities is difficult in some parts of Romania. Public transportation and building access facilities for the disabled are better in Bucharest and other large cities, international airports and large hotels.

Air safety

The Australian Government does not provide information on the safety of individual commercial airlines or flight paths. See instead the Aviation Safety Network website for information on aviation safety in Romania.

Please also refer to our general Air travel page for information on aviation safety and security.

Laws

You are subject to the local laws of Romania, including those that appear harsh by Australian standards. If you're arrested or jailed, the Australian Government will do what it can to help you under our Consular Services Charter. But we can't get you out of trouble or out of jail. Research laws before travelling, especially for an extended stay.

International driving permit: A valid international driving permit (IDP) along with your current Australian driver's license is required to drive a vehicle in Romania. Permits are issued through state and territory motoring clubs. Driving without an IDP could void your travel insurance.

Carry identification at all times while in Romania. Keep your Australian passport in a safe place, and carry a photocopy which is sufficient if asked.

Driving with any amount of alcohol in your system is illegal. Penalties for drink driving range from loss of licence and a fine to a prison sentence of one to five years. Breathalyser tests are required on the scene for all drivers involved in an accident. Refusing to take a breathalyser test will result in criminal penalties.

Penalties for possession or trafficking of drugs can be severe, and include heavy fines and prison sentences of up to 20 years. See our Drugs page.

Taking photographs of airports, military installations and other secure locations is not permitted.

Homosexuality is not illegal, but is not widely accepted in Romanian society. See our LGBTI travellers page.

Prostitution is illegal in Romania, and any sexual conduct with a minor (under the age of 18 years) is punishable with up to 20 years imprisonment.

Some Australian criminal laws, such as those relating to money laundering, bribery of foreign public officials, terrorism, forced marriage, female genital mutilation, child pornography, and child sex tourism, apply to Australians overseas. Australians who commit these offences while overseas may be prosecuted in Australia.

Australian authorities are committed to combating sexual exploitation of children by Australians overseas. Australians may be prosecuted at home under Australian child sex tourism and child pornography laws. These laws provide severe penalties of up to 25 years imprisonment for Australians who engage in child sexual exploitation while outside of Australia.

Information for dual nationals

Romania recognises dual nationality.

Our Dual nationals page provides further information for dual nationals.

Health

Take out comprehensive travel insurance that will cover any overseas medical costs, including medical evacuation, before departing from Australia. Confirm that your travel insurance covers you for the whole time you'll be away and check what circumstances and activities are not covered by your policy. Remember, regardless of how healthy and fit you are, if you can't afford travel insurance, you can't afford to travel. The Australian Government will not pay for a traveller's medical expenses overseas or medical evacuation costs.

Consider your physical and mental health before travelling overseas. Get vaccinated before you travel. At least eight weeks before you depart, make an appointment with your doctor or travel clinic for a basic health check-up, and discuss your travel plans and any implications for your health, particularly if you have an existing medical condition. The World Health Organization (WHO) provides information for travellers and our Health page also provides useful information for travellers on staying healthy.

Medical facilities

Medical facilities are generally well below Australian standards and the availability of medical supplies is limited, particularly outside major cities. Treatment can be expensive and up-front payment is often required. In the case of serious illness or accident, medical evacuation to another European country may be required. Medical evacuation costs can be considerable.

Romania has three decompression chambers, all located in the port city of Constanta on the Black Sea coast.

Health risks

Rabies is endemic in Romania. Feral dogs roam city streets, often in packs, and can be vicious. Dog attacks are not uncommon. Seek medical help immediately if bitten. Consider consulting your travel doctor on vaccination against rabies prior to your travel.

The Romanian Health Ministry has in the past confirmed cases of West Nile virus in Alba, Bucharest, Cluj, Constanta, Dolj, Galati, Mures, Sibiu and Teleorman. There is no vaccine to prevent West Nile virus. Protective measures against mosquito bites are recommended such as: wearing long-sleeve, loose-fitting, light-coloured clothing, using mosquito repellent; ensuring your accommodation is mosquito proof; and avoiding standing water.

Water-borne, food-borne and other infectious diseases (including tuberculosis, typhoid, measles and hepatitis) are prevalent with more serious outbreaks occurring from time to time. The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control has reported over seven thousand cases of measles in Romania in 2017. Consult your doctor well in advance of travel on whether a vaccination is required.

Avoid raw and undercooked food. In rural areas, drink boiled water or bottled water, and avoid ice cubes. Seek medical advice if you have a fever or are suffering from diarrhoea.

Travel in forested areas brings the risk of exposure to tick-borne encephalitis. Ticks are very common in country areas and are active from spring to autumn.

Where to get help

Depending on the nature of your enquiry, your best option may be to contact your family, friends, airline, travel agent, tour operator, employer or travel insurance provider in the first instance. Your travel insurer should have a 24-hour emergency number.

For criminal issues, contact the local police at the nearest police station. The emergency assistance number is 112. Always obtain a police report when reporting a crime.

The Consular Services Charter explains what the Australian Government can and cannot do to assist Australians overseas. Australia has a Consulate in Bucharest, headed by an Honorary Consul. The Consulate provides limited consular services and does not issue passports.

Australian Consulate, Bucharest

Ms Mihaela Nicola
Honorary Consul
The Group
3 Praga St, District 1
Bucharest 011801
Romania
Telephone: +4 037 406 0845
Facsimile: +4 031 107 1378
Email: office@australianconsulate.ro

The Australian Embassy in Athens oversees the Australian Consulate in Bucharest. See contact details below:

Australian Embassy, Athens

Thon Building, Level 6
Cnr. Kifisias and Alexandras Ave
Ambelokipi
Athens 115 23 GREECE
Telephone: +30 210 870 4000
Facsimile: +30 210 870 4055
Website: Australia in Greece

See the Embassy website for information about opening hours and temporary closures that may affect service provision.

If you are unable to contact the above missions, in a consular emergency you can contact the 24-hour Consular Emergency Centre on +61 2 6261 3305, or 1300 555 135 within Australia.

Additional information

Natural disasters, severe weather and climate

Romania is subject to earthquakes, as well as flooding in the autumn and winter months. While serious earthquakes are rare, earth tremors are common.

Additional Resources

DFAT country information