Road Conditions and Safety: Traffic drives on the left in Turks and Caicos. Primary roads are in generally good condition, while secondary roads are often unpaved. Hazards such as blind intersections, road work, unmarked changes in road conditions, and a lack of familiarity with roundabouts may cause problems while driving. At a roundabout, drivers are required to give way to those on their immediate right and those who enter the roundabout first. Animals often wander on the roads, presenting a hazard to drivers, especially at night.
Traffic Laws: You need a valid driver?s license to drive in Turks and Caicos. A valid U.S. or International Driving Permit is good for up to a month, after that a local Turks and Caicos license from the Department of Road Safety is required. Speed limits are 20 mph in town and side roads, and 40 mph on the highway. The use of seatbelts is mandatory. Driving under the influence of alcohol is illegal. Traffic accidents are on the rise and are often fatal. For emergencies, call 999 or 911 for police.
Public Transportation: There is no public transportation, but taxis are readily available. Only use marked taxis and wear your seatbelt. Car and scooter rentals are available but you must have a valid driver?s license and be 21 years or older. There is a government tax on all car and motor scooter rentals (insurance is extra).
See our Road Safety page for more information.
Aviation Safety Oversight: The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has assessed the government of Turks and Caicos? Civil Aviation Authority as being in compliance with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) aviation safety standards for oversight of TCI?s air carrier operations. Further information may be found on the FAA?s safety assessment page.
Maritime Travel: Mariners planning travel to Turks and Caicos should also check for U.S. maritime advisories and alerts. Information may also be posted to the U.S. Coast Guard homeport website, and the NGA broadcast warnings.
There are two hospital facilities on Providenciales and Grand Turk managed by InterHealth Canada that are able to handle non-life threatening medical needs. However, serious medical problems may require medical evacuation by air to neighboring countries or the United States.
The repatriation of the remains of U.S. citizens who die in Turks and Caicos can take weeks to return to the United States because Turks and Caicos does not always have a pathologist available to perform autopsies. Periodically-scheduled nonresident foreign pathologists often travel to Turks and Caicos to perform this public service.
We do not pay medical bills. Be aware that U.S. Medicare or Medicaid does not apply overseas.
Medical Insurance: Make sure your health insurance plan provides coverage overseas. Most care providers overseas only accept cash payments. See our webpage for more information on insurance providers for overseas coverage.
We strongly recommend supplemental insurance to cover medical evacuation.
Medicines: If traveling with prescription medication, check with the Government of Turks and Caicos to ensure the medication is legal in Turks and Caicos. Always carry your prescription medication in its original packaging with your doctor?s prescription.
Vaccinations: Be up-to-date on all vaccinations recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Further health information:
Local laws and Special Circumstances
Criminal Penalties: You are subject to local laws. If you violate local laws, even unknowingly, you may be expelled, arrested, or imprisoned.
Arrest Notification: If you are arrested or detained, ask police or prison officials to notify the U.S. Embassy in Nassau and the U.S. Consular Agency in Providenciales immediately. See our webpage for further information.
Penalties for possessing, using or trafficking in illegal drugs are severe, and convicted offenders can expect long jail sentences and/or heavy fines.
Faith-Based Travelers: See the following webpages for details:
- Faith-Based Travel Information
- International Religious Freedom Report? see country reports
- Human Rights Report ? see country reports
- Best Practices for Volunteering Abroad
LGBTI Travelers: There are no legal restrictions on same-sex sexual relations or the organization of LGBTI events in Turks and Caicos.
Travelers Who Require Accessibility Assistance: There are very few buildings with special facilities for people with physical challenges and disabilities.
Women Travelers: See our travel tips for Women Travelers.
Wildlife: Local laws provide for specific fishing limits, the protection of plants and the protection of wild birds. National Park Zones prohibit certain activities harmful to ecology. You can find further information from the Turks and Caicos Government?s Department of Environment and Maritime Affairs. All other hunting is prohibited. Many protected species live in Turks and Caicos. You may receive severe penalties if you disturb, harass, or otherwise threaten wildlife.
Safety and Security
Crime: American citizens are not specifically targeted for crime in the Eastern Caribbean islands. However, crimes of opportunity such as petty larceny, burglary, automobile break-ins; as well as incidents of violent crime, such as murder, sexual assault, robbery, shootings, and drug related crimes do occasionally occur. As you would in any major metropolitan area of the U.S., use the below personnel security measures while traveling:
- Do not leave valuables unattended in public areas, on beaches, unsecured in hotel rooms, or in rental homes.
- Avoid walking alone, especially at night, on beaches, and in isolated or poorly lit locations.
- Go out in groups or with a companion and restrict nighttime activities to established safe and reputable venues.
- Use only clearly marked taxis and avoid rides with strangers.
- Stick to well-lit and well-traveled routes.
- Avoid displaying flashy jewelry, expensive electronics, and large amounts of cash.
- Be aware of your surroundings at all times. If you see something suspicious or unusual contact local police to report immediately.
- Use added caution when shopping in crowded areas, especially during the holiday season.
- Use added caution when attending crowded events, celebrations, music festivals, etc.
- Do not leave drinks unattended in public venues as this could create a potential vulnerability for the use of ?date rape? drugs in furtherance of criminal activity.
- Do not be predictable; vary your daily routes and schedules.
- Do not engage in illegal activity.
*Abide by the above security measures at all times, be aware of your surroundings in all areas, and use added vigilance while in isolated areas where tourists do not normally frequent.
Victims of Crime
Report crimes to the local police at 911 or 999 and contact the U.S. Consular Agency in Providenciales at 649-232-5713.
Remember that local authorities are responsible for investigating and prosecuting the crime.
See our webpage on help for U.S. victims of crime overseas.
- help you find appropriate medical care
- assist you in reporting a crime to the police
- contact relatives or friends with your written consent
- explain the local criminal justice process in general terms
- provide a list of local attorneys
- provide our information on victim?s compensation programs in the U.S.
- provide an emergency loan for repatriation to the United States and/or limited medical support in cases of destitution
- help you find accommodation and arrange flights home
- replace a stolen or lost passport
U.S. citizen victims of domestic violence may contact the U.S. Embassy in Nassau or the U.S. Consular Agency in Providenciales for assistance. If you are in immediate danger, first contact the local police at 911.
Hurricanes: Hurricane season generally runs from June through November, although hurricanes can occur outside that period. Monitor local weather reports closely.
Tourism: Regulation across the tourism industry varies, and safety inspections for equipment and facilities may not uniformly occur across all tourism operators. Hazardous areas/activities are not always identified with appropriate signage, and staff may not be trained or certified either by the host government or by recognized authorities in the field. U.S. citizens are encouraged to discuss safety and security measures with tourism operators. In the event of an injury, appropriate medical treatment is typically available only in/near major cities or major tourism zones. First responders may be unable to access areas outside of major cities or major tourism zones.The ability to provide urgent medical treatment may be limited. Critical injuries often require medical evacuation. U.S. citizens are encouraged to purchase medical evacuation insurance. See our webpage for more information on insurance providers for overseas coverage.
Entry exit Requirementsh
A tourist visa is not required for stays under 90 days. A valid passport is required for entry and exit. Visit the website of the Turks and Caicos Immigration Department for the most current visa information.
The nearest emergency U.S. passport facility is located in Nassau, The Bahamas. To learn more about emergency passport issuance visit U.S. Embassy Nassau, The Bahamas.
The U.S. Department of State is unaware of any HIV/AIDS entry restrictions for visitors to or foreign residents of Turks and Caicos.
Exit Requirements for Minors: Unaccompanied children under the age of 18 are required to present a valid passport and notarized consent from parent(s) or legal guardian(s) to exit Turks and Caicos.
The Turks and Caicos Islands (TCIS) are a British Overseas Territory consisting of eight major islands. See the Department of State?s Fact Sheet on Turks and Caicos for information on U.S. – Turks and Caicos relations.
Travel Embassy and Consulate
#42 Queen Street
P.O. Box N-8197
Nassau, The Bahamas
Telephone: +(242) 322-1181
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +(242) 322-1181
Fax: +(242) 356-7174
U.S. Consular Agency
2 Venture Ct.
Grace Bay Suite 102E
Providenciales, Turks and Caicos