December 17, 2019
Event: Holidays in Benin provide increased risk for criminal activity. There is a heightened risk of armed robbery, assault, and kidnapping. Travelers to Benin are perceived to have gifts or large amounts of cash.
Actions to Take:
- Exercise additional vigilance throughout the holiday season and at holiday events.
- Review your personal security plans.
- Be aware of your surroundings.
- Use caution when driving at night and avoid walking after dark.
- Monitor local media for updates.
- Exercise caution if unexpectedly in the vicinity of large gatherings or protests.
- Stay alert in locations frequented by tourists/Westerners.
- Keep a low profile.
We strongly recommend that U.S. citizens traveling to or residing in Benin enroll in the Department of State’s Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) at https://step.state.gov/step. STEP Enrollment gives you the latest security updates, and makes it easier for the U.S. embassy or nearest U.S. consulate to contact you in an emergency. If you don’t have internet access, enroll directly with the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.
Regularly monitor the State Department’s website at http://travel.state.gov, where you can find current Travel Warnings, Travel Alerts, and the Worldwide Caution. Read the Country Specific Information for Benin. For additional information, refer to “A Safe Trip Abroad” on the State Department’s website.
Contact the U.S. Embassy for up-to-date information on travel restrictions. You can also call 1-888-407-4747 toll free from within the United States and Canada, or 1-202-501-4444 from other countries. These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays). Follow us on Twitter and Facebook, and download our free Smart Traveler App from iTunes or Google play to have travel information at your fingertips.
The U.S. Embassy in Cotonou is located at Rue Caporal Bernard Anani, and is open Monday-Thursday from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., and Friday from 8 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. The Embassy’s mailing address is 01 BP 2012, Cotonou, Benin. If you are a U.S. citizen in need of urgent assistance, the emergency number for the U.S. Embassy is (229) 21-30-06-50.