Official advice for New Zealanders living and travelling overseas

  • Reviewed: 13 November 2017, 14:20 NZDT
  • Still current at: 11 December 2018

Exercise increased caution

Exercise increased caution in Kuwait due to the threat from terrorism and potential for civil unrest. 

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Terrorism is an ongoing threat in Kuwait. There is a continued threat of attacks in the Gulf region, including on Western interests, residential compounds, military, oil, transport and aviation interests. Places of worship have been attacked in the past. Further attacks are possible, and could be indiscriminate.

New Zealanders in Kuwait are advised to maintain a high level of personal security awareness, particularly in public and commercial areas known to be frequented by Western expatriates or travellers.

Civil unrest
Demonstrations in Kuwait take place occasionally and are normally peaceful.  Protests have sometimes led to violence with police using tear gas and stun grenades to disperse protestors. New Zealanders in Kuwait are advised to avoid demonstrations as even those intended to be peaceful have the potential to turn violent. We recommend monitoring events through local media and adhering to any instructions issued by the local authorities.    

Unexploded landmines and munitions from the 1991 Gulf War still present a hazard in Kuwait. We advise staying on well-used roads and paths as mined areas are often unmarked. People have been injured after touching suspicious unfamiliar objects.

Maritime travel
Piracy is a significant threat in coastal waters, and in some cases further out at sea. Exercise caution in the Persian Gulf as the northern area has not been demarcated. Iran and the United Arab Emirates have claimed sovereignty over the Abu Musa and Tunbs islands in the southern area. Vessels entering these areas have been detained and inspected. Mariners are advised to take appropriate security measures in these waters, and to make thorough enquiries with local authorities before considering port stop-overs. For more information view the International Maritime Bureau's piracy report.

Land Borders
Only use authorised road border crossing points into Saudi Arabia, and make sure you have the correct documentation. Any other crossings are considered illegal by Kuwaiti officials. Some borders are patrolled by armed guards and there have been exchanges of gunfire in the past.

General travel advice
New Zealanders are advised to respect religious and social traditions in Kuwait to avoid offending local sensitivities. Modesty and discretion should be exercised in both dress and behaviour.

New Zealanders travelling or living in Kuwait should have a comprehensive travel insurance policy in place that includes provision for medical evacuation by air.

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

Travel tips

The New Zealand Embassy Riyadh, Saudi Arabia is accredited to Kuwait

Street Address Diplomatic Quarter, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia Postal Address PO Box 94 397, Riyadh, 11693, Saudi Arabia Telephone +966 1 1 4887735 Fax +966 1 488 7912 Email Web Site Hours Sun - Thurs 0800 - 1200hrs, 1230 -1500hrs Note

See our regional advice for the Middle East

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Accredited New Zealand Embassy Saudi Arabia

Street Address
Diplomatic Quarter, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Telephone: +966 1 1 4887735

Fax: +966 1 488 7912



Hours: Sun - Thurs 0800 - 1200hrs, 1230 -1500hrs

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