State Department: FYROM - Consular Information Sheet, October 23, 1998
Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia - Consular Information Sheet
October 23, 1998
COUNTRY DESCRIPTION: The Former Yugoslav Republic of
Macedonia (FYR of Macedonia) is a developing nation undergoing economic
change. Conditions in tourist facilities vary considerably, and many are
not up to Western standards.
ENTRY AND EXIT REQUIREMENTS: U.S. citizens need a
passport and visa. Although travelers may be able to obtain visas at the
border, it is recommended that they obtain their visas in their country of
residence prior to travel. Additional information may be obtained from the
Embassy of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, 3050 K Street N.W.,
Suite 210, Washington, D.C., 20007, telephone (202) 337-3063. Travelers
will be required to complete an entry/exit document when they enter the FYR
of Macedonia. The exit portion of this document must be retained for
presentation to Immigration officials upon departure. Loss of this form
may result in departure delays.
U.S. citizens who plan to travel to Serbia-Montenegro should obtain
visas before arriving in Skopje. It is not possible to get a visa for
Serbia-Montenegro at the border. In recent months, U.S. citizens have
found it increasingly difficult to obtain visas at the Embassy of the
Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (Serbia-Montenegro) in Skopje, and many
visitors have faced long waits.
AREAS OF INSTABILITY: To date, while the conflicts in
the Balkan Region have had no significant direct impact on the FYR of
Macedonia, visitors to border areas near Albania and Serbia-Montenegro, or
visitors planning to travel to those countries from FYR of Macedonia,
should consult the travel warnings for those countries. Because of
continuing tensions along the borders with Albania and Serbia-Montenegro,
visitors should cross only at recognized border crossings.
There have been a number of minor explosions, always detonated at
night, and usually near police stations or other government
facilities. But to date there have been no casualties.
Additionally, there have been a few street demonstrations in support
of freedom in Kosovo by ethnic-Albanian citizens of FYR of
Macedonia. These demonstrations have been generally peaceful, with
only individual acts of minor vandalism associated with them. To
minimize risk, visitors should not approach demonstrations.
MEDICAL FACILITIES: Health facilities are limited.
Medicines are in short supply. Doctors and hospitals expect immediate cash
payment for health services. U.S. medical coverage is not always valid
outside the United States. The Medicare/Medicaid program does not provide
payment for medical services outside the United States.
Check with your own insurance company to confirm whether your policy
applies overseas, including provision for medical evacuation. Ascertain
whether payment will be made to the overseas hospital or doctor or whether
you will be reimbursed later for expenses you incur. Some insurance
policies also include coverage for psychiatric treatment or disposition of
remains in the event of death. Useful information on medical emergencies
abroad, including overseas insurance programs, is provided in the
Department of State, Bureau of Consular Affairs brochure Medical
Information for Americans Traveling abroad, available via its home page and
The international travelers hotline of the Centers for Disease Control
and Prevention may be reached from the United States at 1-877-394-8747, via
their autofax service at 1-888-232-3229, or their Internet site at http://www.cdc.gov.
CRIME INFORMATION: Theft and other petty crimes occur
in the FYR of Macedonia. The loss or theft of a U.S. passport should be
reported immediately to the local police and the nearest U.S. embassy or
consulate. Useful information on safeguarding valuables and protecting
personal safety while traveling abroad is provided in the Department of
States pamphlet A Safe Trip Abroad. It is available from the
Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington,
D.C. 20402, via the Internet at http://www.access.gpo.gov/su_docs,
DRUG PENALTIES: U.S. citizens are subject to the laws
of the country in which they are traveling. Penalties for possession, use,
or trafficking in illegal drugs are strict, and convicted offenders can
expect jail sentences and fines.
ROAD SAFETY/CONDITIONS: Most major highways are in good
repair, but secondary roads are poorly maintained and lighted, and
frequently they are used by horse-drawn carts and livestock. Many vehicles
are old and lack standard front or rear lights. Mountain roads can lack
guard rails, be narrow, or be poorly marked, and they quickly become
dangerous in inclement weather.
AVIATION SAFETY OVERSIGHT: As there is no direct
commercial air service by local carriers at present, nor economic authority
to operate such service between the United States and the FYR of Macedonia,
the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has not assessed the FYR of
Macedonias civil aviation authority for compliance with international
aviation safety standards for oversight of the FYR of Macedonias air
carrier operations. For further information, travelers may contact the
Department of Transportation within the U.S. at 1-800-322-7873, or visit
the FAA Internet Home Page at http://www.faa.gov/avr/iasa.htm.
The U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) separately assesses some foreign air
carriers for suitability as official providers of air services. For
information regarding the DOD policy on specific carriers, travelers may
contact the Pentagon at 1-703-697-7288.
EMBASSY LOCATION/REGISTRATION: U.S. citizens are
encouraged to register at the U.S. Embassy in Skopje and obtain updated
information on travel and security in the Former Yugoslav Republic of
Macedonia. The U.S. Embassy is located at Ilindenska BB, 91000 Skopje,
telephone (389) 91 116-180, fax (389) (91) 117-103.
* * * *
This replaces the Consular Information Sheet
dated March 12, 1997, to update information on entry/exit requirements,
areas of instability, medical facilities, crime information, road safety
conditions, and aviation safety oversight.