Official advice for New Zealanders living and travelling overseas

  • Reviewed: 27 March 2024, 15:25 NZDT
  • Still current at: 16 April 2024

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COVID-19

If you are planning international travel at this time, please read our COVID-19 related travel advice here, alongside our destination specific travel advice below.

Exercise normal safety and security precautions

Exercise normal safety and security precautions in Argentina (level 1 of 4).

Exercise increased caution

Exercise increased caution in Rosario due to high levels of crime and violence (level 2 of 4).

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Argentina

Crime
Distraction thefts and violent crime, such as armed robbery, are an issue in Argentina, particularly in larger cities like Buenos Aires, Mendoza and Rosario. Petty crime such as pick-pocketing, bag-snatching and mobile phone theft is common, especially in popular tourist and public areas, and on public transport.

New Zealanders in Argentina should be vigilant about personal security and avoid walking alone at night. New Zealanders in Buenos Aires should be particularly cautious in the following areas, where robberies are common:

  • Florida St, La Boca (outside of the Caminito tourist area)
  • Retiro (particularly bus terminal area)
  • San Telmo and tourist areas such as Plaza Congreso
  • Plaza Francia in Recoleta
  • Puerto Madero
  • Palermo
  • Congreso

If you are the victim of a robbery, hand over your belongings without resistance, as responding could lead to an escalation in violence. 

Thieves often work together and may distract victims and rob them while their attention is diverted. The most commonly reported theft in Buenos Aires is the ‘mustard scam’ where an accomplice pretends to help remove mustard or ketchup that has been ‘accidentally’ sprayed on them, while also robbing them. If this happens to you, politely but firmly refuse assistance and walk away.

It is advisable to leave your passport in your hotel safe and carry a photocopy or an official ID when venturing out. You should ensure that your personal belongings are secure and close to you at all times. It is also important to avoid wearing or displaying items that appear valuable such as jewellery and electronic devices.

Crimes against drivers in major cities is a problem, particularly while stopped at traffic lights. When driving, you should keep doors locked and windows up at all times. We recommend using clearly-marked ‘radio taxis’ or rideshare services such as Uber or Cabify, preferably booked in advance.

There have been reports of ‘express kidnappings’ in Argentina, where criminals abduct a victim for a short amount of time and force them to withdraw funds from automatic teller machines (ATMs) to secure their release. To reduce the risk of this occurring we recommend that you use ATMs located indoors in banks, hotels, supermarkets or shopping centres during daylight hours.

There have been incidents of drink spiking followed by robbery and assault reported in Argentina. Extra care should be taken to ensure your food and drink is never left unattended. We recommend against accepting drinks from strangers or recent acquaintances.

Following an increase in violent organised and drug-related crime in Rosario, Province of Santa Fe, the Government of Argentina has deployed additional security forces to maintain public order and safety.  Public transport and taxis have also been affected. If you are in Rosario or planning to travel to Rosario, exercise increased caution, monitor the media and follow the advice of the local authorities.

The  tourist  police in the city of Buenos Aires operates a multi-lingual phone line for tourists, which can be accessed by dialling (+549) 11 5050 3293 or (+549) 11 5050 9260 (from within Argentina). They are physically located at Av Corrientes 436 in Buenos Aires city and their email is  serv.turista@gmail.com. The national 24 hour emergency number is 911, but please note that the operators might not be able to take calls in English.

Civil unrest
Protests, demonstrations and organised strikes occur regularly in Buenos Aires and occasionally in other major cities as well. These may sometimes block roads, causing delays and disruption to public transport.

New Zealanders in Argentina are advised to avoid all protests and demonstrations as even those intended to be peaceful have the potential to result in violence. We recommend monitoring local media for information on upcoming demonstrations and  complying with any instructions and restrictions issued by the local authorities.

General travel advice
Irrespective of the branding on ATMs you may need to try several machines before finding one that works for your card. Similarly, some types of credit cards may not work in some stores or restaurants. Consider travelling with two different types of credit cards to avoid issues. 

Penalties for possession, use or trafficking of illegal drugs are severe and can include lengthy imprisonment or fines.

A number of volcanoes are located on the Chilean border. Volcanic activity and earthquakes could happen at any time, residents have been evacuated in the past.

It is advisable that New Zealanders travelling in Argentina should have a comprehensive travel insurance policy in place.

New Zealanders in Argentina are encouraged to register their details with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

Travel tips


The New Zealand Embassy Buenos Aires, Argentina

Street Address Carlos Pellegrini 1427, 5th Floor, Ciudad de Buenos Aires CP1011, Argentina Telephone +54 (11) 5070 0700 Emergency Telephone 0800 30 10 30 (within New Zealand) or +64 99 20 20 20 (outside of New Zealand) Email embajadanzba@gmail.com Web Site https://www.mfat.govt.nz/argentina/ Hours Mon-Fri 10.00-12.00 For New Zealand Citizens only: Mon - Fri 09.00 - 17.30

See our regional advice for Central/South America

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New Zealand Embassy Argentina

Street Address
Carlos Pellegrini 1427, 5th Floor, Ciudad de Buenos Aires CP1011, Argentina

Telephone: +54 (11) 5070 0700

Emergency Telephone: 0800 30 10 30 (within New Zealand) or +64 99 20 20 20 (outside of New Zealand)

Email: embajadanzba@gmail.com

Website: https://www.mfat.govt.nz/argentina/

Hours: Mon-Fri 10.00-12.00 For New Zealand Citizens only: Mon - Fri 09.00 - 17.30

Related advice from other countries

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