Official advice for New Zealanders living and travelling overseas

  • Reviewed: 1 February 2017, 14:36 NZDT
  • Still current at: 23 May 2018

Some Risk

There is some risk to your security in Timor-Leste from violent crime and isolated incidents of civil unrest and we advise caution.

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Violent Crime
There are occasional incidents of assault and other violent crime in Timor-Leste, including in Dili. Foreigners may be targeted for robbery because of their perceived wealth. Gang-related violence can occur, and in the past has included stone throwing at vehicles.

New Zealanders in Timor-Leste should exercise a high degree of personal security awareness at all times. We advise against travelling alone, at night and to isolated areas for security reasons.

Sexual harassment of foreign women is common. Women should avoid visiting isolated areas alone or taking public transport (including taxis) alone, especially at night.

Civil Unrest
Since the departure of UN peacekeepers in December 2012, the security situation in Timor-Leste has generally remained stable. However, disturbances could occur with little warning and escalate quickly. Other localised unrest, including street clashes between gangs, is becoming increasingly common, particularly in Dili.

New Zealanders in Timor-Leste are advised to avoid all protests, demonstrations and other large public gatherings, as even those intended to be peaceful have the potential to turn violent. Regularly monitor the media and local information sources to keep up to date on developments.

Piracy is a problem in South East Asian waters. Mariners are advised to take appropriate precautionary measures in these waters. For more information view the International Maritime Bureau’s piracy report.

General Travel Advice
Poor road quality, poor driving standards and a rapidly increasing number of cars on the roads, especially in Dili, makes driving hazardous and accidents are frequent, especially at night when lighting can be minimal. Driving accidents can attract large crowds that can turn violent at short notice. You must consider your personal safety should you find yourself in this situation.

Checkpoints occasionally operate in Dili and throughout the country.  New Zealanders should carry relevant personal identification and vehicle registration papers with them at all times.

Medical services in Timor-Leste are very limited and New Zealanders travelling or resident in Timor-Leste should have a comprehensive travel insurance policy in place that includes provision for medical evacuation by air.

New Zealanders travelling or resident in Timor-Leste are encouraged to register their details with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

Travel tips

The New Zealand Embassy Dili, Timor-Leste

Street Address Rua Geremias do Amaral, Motael, Dili, Timor-Leste Telephone +670 331 0087 Emergency Telephone +670 7732 1015 Email Hours Mon - Fri 9:00am - 11:00am; 2:00pm - 4:00pm

See our regional advice for South East Asia

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New Zealand Embassy Timor-Leste

Street Address
Rua Geremias do Amaral, Motael, Dili, Timor-Leste

Telephone: +670 331 0087

Emergency Telephone: +670 7732 1015


Hours: Mon - Fri 9:00am - 11:00am; 2:00pm - 4:00pm

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