The Department of Foreign Affairs strongly recommends that comprehensive travel insurance, including medical insurance, is obtained before travelling to Argentina. Travellers should note that the Irish government does not provide funds for emergency medical repatriation or for repatriation of remains.
Argentina combines natural resources with abundant cultural attractions to make it a very popular tourism and travel destination. The main cities have developed infrastructure but this varies in the countryside. The large geographic size of Argentina results in a multitude of climates and long distances between primary cities. Most visits to Argentina are trouble-free although petty crime such as pick pocketing and theft against tourists is on the increase.
For entry requirements for Argentina, please contact the nearest Argentinian Embassy or Consulate.
It is advisable to take a number of photocopies of your passport with you. During your stay you should carry a photocopy of your passport at all times.
Safety and Security
You should be aware of the global risk of indiscriminate terrorist attacks which could be against civilian targets, including places frequented by foreigners.
Argentina has recovered strongly from the economic and political crisis of 2001/02, but there are still occasional outbreaks of social unrest. You are advised to be alert, avoid demonstrations and public gatherings, watch the news and keep in touch with events. You may also encounter groups of demonstrators (piqueteros) blocking major roads into and out of the capital, causing delays and possibly a change in route.
Most visits to Argentina are trouble-free. However, you should keep a close eye on your personal belongings and hold on to them in public places such as internet cafes, train and bus stations. You are advised not to leave items of value in bags or rucksacks placed in overhead racks on overnight long-distance coaches.
Travellers are advised to be particularly vigilant in Retiro bus station in Buenos Aires, on the Buenos Aires underground transport system and in the city of Mendoza where there has been a high incidence of pick-pocketing and bag-snatching recently. More violent crime has been reported recently in the area around San Telmo and La Boca in Buenos Aires and travellers should avoid carrying valuables in these areas.
There are quantities of counterfeit banknotes in circulation in Argentina. The characteristics of non-counterfeit currency can be reviewed at the Argentine Central Bank web site at www.bcra.gov.ar. Taxi drivers, particularly those working from the airport, have been known to accuse customers of handing over fake money and handing them back a fake note which they already have in their possession. When paying drivers you should be extremely vigilant and you should consider noting the serial number of the bill before you pay the driver.
If you require a taxi in the street, please ensure that you only hail a radio taxi; these taxis will have a logo on the rear passenger door and often a light or sign on the roof of the car.
A common scam in Buenos Aires is for one thief to spray a sauce on you, which prompts another thief purporting to be in an innocent passer-by, to come to your aid and clean your clothes, while also stealing your possessions.
Local Laws and Customs
You are advised not to become involved with drugs of any kind. Possession of even very small quantities can lead to a minimum four-and-a-half year prison sentence.
Natural Disasters and Climate
There have been sporadic earthquakes in western sections of the country along the border with Chile.
Argentina's climate is generally temperate but there are major regional variations due to its size – from the extreme heat of the northern regions, through the pleasant climate of the central pampas, to the sub Antarctic cold of Patagonia’s glacial regions. Throughout the country January is the warmest while June and July are the coldest. The mean annual temperature in Buenos Aires is 16oC, in the extreme north the Chaco area comes in at about 23oC.
Heavy rains in the cities of Buenos Aires and La Plata resulted in flash floods which killed dozens of people in April of 2013. While an extreme example, intense rainfalls can occur a number of times per year and result in flash floods and mudslides which cause damage to property and potential injury and/or loss of life. Any extreme weather warnings issued by the local authorities should be noted and the instructions should be adhered to.
Additional Country Info
Please be aware that driving and road safety standards in Argentina are not uniform: respect for speed limits and traffic signals is patchy and manoeuvres by fellow road users can be unexpected. Crime against car users, particularly when stationary at traffic lights, is a growing danger to be aware of; in cities it is advisable to keep windows closed and doors locked at all times.
DIPLOMATIC AND CONSULAR MISSIONS IN ARGENTINATop