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Armenia

If you’re travelling to Armenia, our travel advice and updates give you practical tips and useful information.

Security Status

  • Normal precautions
  • High degree of caution
  • Avoid non-essential travel
  • Do not travel
  • Overview
  • Safety and Security
  • Local Laws and Customs
  • Health
  • Additional Information
  • Embassy Contact

Overview

General COVID-19 Travel Advisory in Operation

Ireland is implementing the new EU ‘traffic lights’ approach to travel, which applies to countries in the EU / EEA (+ UK). Our current advice for travel to these countries is ‘exercise a high degree of caution’. Our general advice for any other overseas travel remains ‘avoid non-essential travel’ or in some cases, ‘do not travel’. Travel within the island of Ireland can continue as normal, subject to domestic public health restrictions as outlined on gov.ie.

Our TravelWise app has been suspended while we move to implement the new EU system. We apologise for this inconvenience. Updated information will continue to be provided on this website.

On 13 October, Member States adopted the EU Recommendation on a coordinated approach to travel restrictions in the context of COVID-19. This ‘traffic lights’ approach provides for regions across the European Union (EU) and European Economic Area (EEA) to be categorised as green, orange, red or grey, on the basis of the risk levels associated with COVID-19. A combined indicator map will be published each week by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), based on agreed criteria, including the 14-day cumulative incidence rate, testing rate and testing positivity rates.

In line with the EU Recommendation, there will be no entry restrictions on passengers travelling from green regions. Each Member State will decide in due course what entry restrictions it will apply to passengers travelling from red, orange and grey regions. This website will gradually provide more information as it becomes available.

Information about what to do on entering Ireland from abroad:

All passengers arriving into Ireland from overseas are obliged to complete a COVID-19 Passenger Locator Form before entry. In line with the EU traffic lights approach, there are no entry restrictions on travellers from green regions. Currently, all passengers entering Ireland from red, orange and grey regions are requested to restrict their movements for 14 days. For further details please see the Irish Government Advice Page. Everyone is asked to comply with restrictions within Ireland, including those under the National Framework for Living with COVID-19. These are listed on the Official website of the Irish Government.

If you are considering travelling outside of Ireland:

In accordance with Government policy, which is based on official public health advice, the Department of Foreign Affairs continues to advise against non-essential travel overseas, other than to countries that are part of the EU ‘traffic lights’ approach, where the advice is to exercise a high degree of caution (this includes Great Britain but not Northern Ireland). The situation in relation to COVID-19 continues to evolve quickly around the world. Citizens who are considering any overseas travel are advised to carefully monitor the official advice and information from the public authorities in their destination.

Should you decide that you need to travel, you should inform yourself about any requirements in the destination to which you are travelling. Information about entry restrictions currently applied by other countries is available on the country-specific travel advice pages. Additional restrictions may be imposed, including during the duration of your visit. Flight restrictions and route cancellations continue to occur worldwide and there is no guarantee that air routes will operate as scheduled. It is important to check with your insurance provider on coverage at this time. Any Irish citizen considering any overseas travel should monitor news and information from the public authorities in their country or region of destination. Citizens are advised to follow the public health guidelines of the local health authorities and to continue to practice physical distancing measures, hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette etc.

The purpose of the Department’s Travel Advice is to provide information to the general public so that individuals can make informed decisions for themselves. There are significant risks associated with international travel in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, and this is likely to remain the case for the foreseeable future. Citizens should be aware of the possible limitations to any consular assistance that could be provided. Any citizens who are considering travel abroad, or those already abroad, are advised to monitor our travel advice, and follow us on Twitter. They are also advised to register with their local Irish Embassy or Consulate and regularly check their website and Twitter accounts for details of any local public health measures and travel restrictions.

Where to go for further travel information:

Overview

Overview

Security Status

Avoid Non-Essential Travel

Security Status Last Updated: 17/03/2020

We advise against all travel near the border of Azerbaijan, particularly to the areas of Tavush and Gegharkunik.

Any Irish citizens already in Armenia are advised not to travel to Nagorno-Karabakh. The hostilities in the Nagorno-Karabakh region escalated significantly on 27 September 2020, with an outbreak of violence between Armenian and Azerbaijani forces, resulting in a number of military and civilian causalities. The hostilities are currently ongoing, and the Department of Foreign Affairs is monitoring the situation. We advise that anyone already in the region exercise extreme caution.

Since the outbreak of hostilities, Martial Law has been declared in Armenia.

COVID-19

Entry into Armenia continues to only be possible for Armenian citizens, apart from:

  • non-citizen family members of Armenian citizens;
  • people with residency in Armenia;
  • Representatives of diplomatic missions, consular posts, international organizations and members of their families;
  • Persons from countries/regions, white-listed by Government decree based on their epidemiological situation.

Permitted arrivals are to be quarantined in designated locations or subject to mandatory self-isolation. They may undergo a PCR test, and if they receive a negative result, may leave self-isolation. Further information is available at Government of Armenia’s website.

Restrictions are in place throughout Armenia, and you are advised to follow the guidance of national and local authorities. Please refer to the Government of Armenia’s website for information about national restrictions and to regional websites for information on local restrictions.

Additional advice and information on COVID-19 can be found via the following links:

Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Armenia

Zvartnots International Airport

Latest Travel Alert

Although the Armenian authorities have officially lifted the State of Emergency, the recently passed Bill on Coronavirus Restrictions will continue to enforce coronavirus-related safety measures and restrictions until 11 January. The bill empowers the relevant authorities to, depending on the state of COVID cases in the country or region, impose nationwide or local lockdowns, seal off communities hit by COVID-19 outbreaks, close Armenia’s borders and isolate people infected with the disease as necessary, as well as ban or restrict public gatherings. We would advise that all Irish citizens keep up with local media for the most up-to-date information on the situation.

We would advise:

  • Irish citizens living in Armenia who wish to remain in Armenia during the coming period to avoid travelling abroad.
  • Irish citizens visiting Armenia who wish to return to Ireland (or another place of residence) over the coming period to do so now.

General Travel Advice

There is no Irish Embassy in Armenia and we can only offer limited consular services.  If your require assistance in an emergency, please contact the Honorary Consul – Mr Jonathan Stark – in Yerevan or the Irish Embassy in Sofia.

Irish citizens in Armenia are reminded that they should be in possession of a valid form of photographic identification such as a passport or passport card at all times.

Emergency Assistance

The best help is often close at hand so if you have problems, try talking to your local contacts, tour operator representative or hotel management.

If you require emergency assistance you can call the below numbers for specific services:

  • 101 for fire department.
  • 102 for police.
  • 103 for ambulance

EU Directive on Consular Protection

Under the EU Consular Protection Directive, Irish nationals may seek assistance from the Embassy or Consulate of any other EU member state in a country where there is no Irish Embassy or permanent representation.

Our tips for Safe Travels:

  • Purchase comprehensive travel insurance which covers all your intended activities.
  • Get a European Health Insurance Card
  • Register your details with us so that we can contact you quickly if there’s an unforeseen crisis like a natural disaster or a family emergency.
  • Read our ‘Know Before You Go’ guide.


Entry requirements (visa/passport)

EU passport holders no longer require a visa to visit Armenia. The entrance stamp is valid for a period of 90 days only. Children arriving on an Irish passport with parents entering Armenia on an Armenian passport will require an Armenian passport to leave the country; this is stated in Armenian law.


If you intend to stay in Armenia longer than 90 days, you must register with the OVIR (Administration Department for Passports and Visas):

Address: Mashtots Ave. 13A,
Yerevan,
Armenia,
Tel: 00 374 10 536 932/ 941

Safety and Security

Safety and security

Border areas

The borders with Turkey and Azerbaijan remain closed. There has been an escalation of incidents in recent months and because of this we advise against any travel near the border of Azerbaijan, particularly the areas of Tavush and Gegharkunik.

Armenia’s land border with Turkey is closed.

Irish travelers are advised not to travel to Nagorno Karabakh.

Demonstrations

Irish citizens should avoid demonstrations and large gatherings of people if at all possible. Political demonstrations may take place in central Yerevan, particularly close to the Opera Square, and in other cities and towns around the country.

Sometimes such demonstrations, even if intended to be peaceful, can turn confrontational. If it’s necessary to be in the vicinity of a demonstration or gatherings, you should be extremely vigilant at all times.

Always keep yourself informed of what’s going on around you by monitoring local media and staying in contact with your hotel or tour organiser.

Terrorism

Although the threat from terrorism in Armenia is low, there is still a global risk of indiscriminate terrorist attacks, which could be against civilian targets, including places frequented by tourists and expatriates.

Crime

Crime remains relatively low in Armenia but you should take sensible precautions:

  • Don’t carry your credit card, travel tickets and money together - leave spare cash and valuables in a safe place.
  • Don’t carry your passport unless absolutely necessary and leave a copy of your passport (and travel and insurance documents) with family or friends at home.
  • Avoid dark and unlit streets and stairways, and arrange to be picked up or dropped off as close to your hotel or apartment entrance as possible.

If you’re a victim of a crime while in Armenia, report it to the local police immediately. You can contact us at the Irish Embassy in Sofia or the Irish Honorary Consul in Yerevan if you need help.

Driving

If you’re planning to drive in Armenia, you should be extremely careful. Roads outside the principal cities can be bad and the local standard of driving is poor, with drivers commonly flouting traffic laws. Driving in Armenia is on the right-hand side of the road. If you want to drive, bring your full Irish and international driving permit and make sure you have adequate and appropriate insurance.

Hiring a vehicle

If you’re hiring a vehicle, we advise you not to hand over your passport as a form of security. If you’re allowing your passport to be photocopied, keep it in your sight at all times.

Check that you have adequate insurance and read the small print of the vehicle hire contract (particularly any waiver that will come into effect if the vehicle is damaged).

Public transport

Public transport tends to be crowded and poorly maintained. Buses run at irregular times and may be difficult to negotiate if you don’t speak Armenian or Russian.

Taxis

Taxis are relatively cheap and accessible in Yerevan. They can be hailed easily on the street. Check that the meter is running. If there’s no meter, negotiate a price for the journey before you start. Average prices for journeys in the city centre are in the region of 500-1000 dram.

Air safety

We recommend flying to Armenia on a scheduled international flight. Western airlines currently serving Armenia are Aegean, Air France, Austrian Airlines, Ukrainian International Airlines and LOT.

Local Laws and Customs

Local laws and customs

Remember, the local laws apply to you as a visitor and it is your responsibility to follow them. Be sensitive to local customs, traditions and practices as your behaviour may be seen as improper, hostile or even illegal.

Illegal drugs

Illegal drug use (no matter what the drug) carries stiff penalties, including fines and long prison terms.

Religion

Armenia is an orthodox Christian country and women can usually dress in normal western-style clothing, although they may be expected to cover their heads when in Church. Outside the capital however, people are more conservative.

Photography

Avoid photographing sites such as military bases, equipment and installations in whatever condition. These are considered sensitive areas and visitors have been detained and questioned while attempting to photograph them.

You should also be aware of cultural sensitivities when photographing churches and other religious sites. If in doubt, ask permission.

Homosexuality

Homosexuality was decriminalised in August 2003 but it’s still an unacceptable lifestyle for the majority of Armenians. We advise travellers to exercise discretion on visits to Armenia.

Health

Health

Medical facilities

Medical facilities outside Yerevan are generally poor and treatment isn’t recommended for anything other than minor ailments. In case of medical need and for advice and assistance contact the Irish Honorary Consul in Yerevan.

Vaccinations

Check with your doctor a minimum of eight weeks in advance of travelling to see if you need any vaccinations for Armenia.

Travel Insurance

We can’t pay for emergency medical repatriation, repatriation of remains, or for expenses as a result of a personal emergency while you are abroad. If you buy an appropriate travel insurance policy, these costs will be covered, provided you haven’t broken the terms and conditions.

Buying comprehensive travel insurance can save you and your family a lot of money if something goes wrong. It will also ensure that you get the medical attention you need, when you need it. Hospital bills can quickly run into thousands of euro, and a medical evacuation back to Ireland can cost thousands more.

Not all policies are the same, and the cheapest one might be cheap for a reason. Make sure your policy covers all the activities you plan to do on your trip. Insurance Ireland recommend that you purchase a policy that provides a minimum medical cover of €1 million.

Emergency expenses

Your policy should cover:

  • All medical care abroad, including evacuation by air ambulance, or other emergency procedures, and any other costs associated with an unexpected longer stay.
  • Your entire trip, from departure to return. Consider an annual multi-trip policy if you’re making more than one trip in the year.   
  • 24-hour emergency service and assistance.
  • Personal liability cover (in case you’re sued for causing injury or damaging property).
  • Lost and stolen possessions.
  • Cancellation and curtailment.
  • Any extra activities you intend to do that are excluded from standard policies (e.g. water sport activities such as jet skiing or other extreme sports).

Exclusions: You should know most insurance policies will not cover drink or drug-related incidents.

Additional Information

Additional information

Entry requirements

EU passport holders no longer require a visa to visit Armenia. The entrance stamp is valid for a period of 90 days only. Children arriving on an Irish passport with parents entering Armenia on an Armenian passport will require an Armenian passport to leave the country; this is stated in Armenian law.

If you intend to stay in Armenia longer than 90 days, you must register with the OVIR (Administration Department for Passports and Visas):

Address: Mashtots Ave. 13A,

Yerevan,

Armenia

Tel: 00 374 10 536 932/ 941

Travelling with children

Dual national passport holders entering Armenia using their Armenian passport and travelling with children on an Irish passport should be aware of Armenian nationality law before entering the country.

Under Armenian law, a child of an Armenian passport holder is automatically regarded as Armenian. This can have implications if you’re applying for visa extensions or when you’re leaving Armenia, as the Armenian authorities may request that an Armenian passport be produced. It may particularly effect young men of military age who have not carried out their compulsory Armenian military service.

Banking

Cheques aren’t used within Armenia. Prices for goods and services are often quoted in US Dollars, but by law, payment must be made in the Armenian Dram. Many ATMs can be found in the cities and most towns. Foreign currency exchanges are also available in branches of the major banks, exchange bureaus and in some supermarkets. We recommend that you avoid exchanging money on the street.

Earthquakes

Armenia is in an active seismic zone. The last serious earthquake, in 1988, was centred in the Lori region in the north, killing between 25,000 and 50,000 people, injuring thousands and leaving several cities in ruins. Always follow the instructions of local authorities in case of an emergency.

Embassy contact

Embassy Contact

Please note that if you require assistance in the case of an emergency while the Embassy is closed, contact the main Embassy number, +359 2 985 3425 and leave a message on the Duty Officer voice mailbox.

This mailbox is monitored regularly.

Embassy of Ireland
Platinum Business Centre
26-28 Bacho Kiro Street
Sofia 1000
Bulgaria

Tel: +359 2 985 3425
Fax: +359 2 983 3302

Monday to Friday 09:15 - 16:45

Contact us

Honorary Consulate Contact

Mr. Jonathan Stark,
Honorary Consul of Ireland,
3rd Floor,
18/1 Vardanants str.,
Yerevan 0010,
Armenia

Tel: +37410 526330
Tel: +37410 526331
Fax: +37410 547883

Please be advised that the Consulate building is temporarily closed. Our Honorary Consul Mr Jonathan Stark is available to assist with emergency consular assistance via phone or email. Please see contact details below.

Email: Email us