State Department Issues Worldwide Travel Alert For Americans

Our site may contain affiliate links. Read Advertiser Disclosure policy here.

Yesterday the U.S. Department of State issued a worldwide Travel Alert for Americans in the wake of the hostage situation in Sydney, Australia earlier this week that left two hostages, and the gunman, dead. According to the travel alert it, is a reminder that U.S. citizens should be extra cautious, maintain a very high level of vigilance, and take appropriate steps to enhance their personal security.  This Travel Alert expires on March 19, 2015.”Screen Shot 2014-12-20 at 1.29.44 PM

The travel alert goes on to say, “An analysis of past attacks and threat reporting strongly suggests a focus by terrorists not only on the targeting of U.S. government facilities but also on hotels, shopping areas, places of worship, and schools, among other targets, during or coinciding with this holiday period. ­U.S. citizens abroad should be mindful that terrorist groups and those inspired by them can pose unpredictable threats in public venues.  U.S. citizens should remain alert to local conditions and for signs of danger.”

The U.S. Department of State has two levels of heightened awareness – Alerts and Warnings.

  • Alerts: “We issue a Travel Alert for short-term events we think you should know about when planning travel to a country. Examples of reasons for issuing a Travel Alert might include an election season that is bound to have many strikes, demonstrations, or disturbances; a health alert like an outbreak of H1N1; or evidence of an elevated risk of terrorist attacks.”
  • Warnings: “We issue a Travel Warning when we want you to consider very carefully whether you should go to a country at all. Examples of reasons for issuing a Travel Warning might include unstable government, civil war, ongoing intense crime or violence, or frequent terrorist attacks. We want you to know the risks of traveling to these places and to strongly consider not going to them at all. Travel Warnings remain in place until the situation changes; some have been in effect for years.”

Bottom Line:
While I’m not ready to change any of my own personal travel patterns just yet, it’s always a good to remember to stay vigilant while traveling – especially in crowded public places. The full list of Alerts and Warnings from the U.S. Department of State can be found here.


Editorial Note: Opinions, analyses, reviews or suggestions expressed on this site are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed.

About Points, Miles & Martinis

Here at Points, Miles and Martinis, we love all things travel. We focus on topics relating to travel including destinations, airline, hotel, car rental and credit card reward programs. Our goal is to help people travel better. - See more at our About Us page.

Sign up for Email || Twitter || Facebook |Tips & Tricks
Hotel Offers || Airline Offers || Bank Offers || Cash Back Offers


  1. As always, you’re far more likely to die in a car accident on the way to the airport than at the hands of terrorists. It’s always good to keep yourself safe (at the very least because of pickpockets & the like), but this certainly won’t have an impact on my travel plans.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *