The United States does not have diplomatic relations with Bhutan and there is no U.S. diplomatic presence there. Consular issues relating to Bhutan, including assistance to U.S. citizens, are handled by the U.S. Embassy in New Delhi. Read the Department of State’s Country Information Sheet on Bhutan or U.S. Embassy New Delhi’s A-Z Subject Index for additional information.
The U.S. Embassy in New Delhi has consular responsibilities for Bhutan and maintains frequent and friendly communications with the Bhutanese Embassy in New Delhi. A consular officer periodically visits Bhutan to renew passports, provide notarial services, and take applications for Consular Reports of Birth Abroad.
Because there is no U.S. Embassy presence in Bhutan, services to U.S. citizens in Bhutan are limited. For example, getting your lost or stolen U.S. passport replaced can be complicated and costly. If you are without a passport you will be required to seek permission to exit Bhutan from Bhutanese immigration authorities, and also obtain advance permission to enter the receiving country from that country’s immigration authorities. The receiving country’s immigration officials may or may not grant such permission. Often, travelers are required to return to the United States to have their passport replaced.
To stay connected:
- Enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program so we can keep you up to date with important safety and security announcements.
- Follow the Bureau of Consular Affairs on Twitter and Facebook.
- Bookmark the Bureau of Consular Affairs website, which contains the current Travel Warnings and Travel Alerts as well as the Worldwide Caution.
- In the event of an emergency, contact 1-888-407-4747 toll-free within the United States and Canada, or via a regular toll line, 1-202-501-4444, from other countries.
- Take some time before traveling to consider your personal security and checking for useful tips for traveling safely abroad.
Alerts and Messages
Last updated: 06/23/21
***Effective January 26, all incoming airline passengers to the United States aged two years and older must provide results of a negative COVID-19 viral test taken within three calendar days of travel. Alternatively, travelers to the United States may provide documentation from a licensed healthcare provider of having recovered from COVID-19 in the 90 days preceding travel. Check the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website for additional information and Frequently Asked Questions.
The U.S. Embassy in New Delhi continues to monitor the COVID-19 situation in Bhutan. Case numbers in Bhutan are generally decreasing with less than 400 active cases in the country. All travelers, without exception, must undergo a stringent 21-day quarantine upon arrival. Country conditions can change at any time. Travelers are advised to follow the National Situational Update for the latest COVID-19 information. Updates are also available on the Ministry of Health’s Facebook page.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a Level 2 Travel Health Notice and the Department of State has issued a Level 2 Travel Advisory advising increased caution when traveling to Bhutan. All diplomatic and consular relations with Bhutan are provided by the U.S. Embassy in New Delhi. During an emergency, the U.S. government may have very limited ability to provide assistance. The Department of State provides additional advice for travelers in the Travel Advisory. Conditions in any country may change at any time.
U.S. citizens who travel to Bhutan are strongly urged to get fully vaccinated against COVID-19 before travel and continue to take personal health safety measures to protect themselves, including practicing social or physical distancing, cleaning hands with soap/hand sanitizer, wearing masks, and avoiding crowded areas with poor ventilation. The CDC strongly recommends that U.S. citizens get flu shots to better protect themselves from a major flu outbreak and reduce the need to access the local health system at this time. Finally, U.S. citizens should continue to obey measures introduced by Bhutanese officials designed to mitigate COVID-19 outbreaks in their areas.
Services such as grocery stores, pharmacies, and medical supply stores are generally open throughout Bhutan. All schools are generally open as well. For specific information about classes, please check with your educational institution. Social gathering venues and retail shops are largely open but may have limits on the number of patrons allowed inside. Social gatherings are generally kept small. Whenever a virus outbreak occurs, the specific geographic zone with the outbreak will be placed in lockdown. Each zone contains grocery stores, medical supply shops, and other essential stores that remain open during a lockdown. Movement between zones during a lockdown is strictly prohibited.
Face masks are almost universally required to be worn in public, especially in urban areas, indoors, and on public transportation. These regulations are being strictly enforced, and U.S. citizens should be aware that failure to adhere to mask-wearing norms reflects poorly on foreign residents. Every shop/store provides hand sanitizer and a Druk Trace App code. All individuals are encouraged to download the Druk Trace App and use it to mark their presence in all public places to assist with accurate contact tracing.
- Are PCR and/or antigen tests available for U.S. citizens in Bhutan? Yes, tests are available at the numerous flu clinics located throughout Bhutan.
- If so, are test results reliably available within 72 hours? Yes, test results are usually available within 24 hours.
- U.S. citizens should contact the national hotline by dialing 2121 to schedule an appointment for testing.
COVID-19 Vaccine Information:
- Has the government of Bhutan approved a COVID-19 vaccine for use? Yes, the Government of Bhutan has approved Covishield (AstraZeneca) for individuals 18 years and older, regardless of nationality.
- Information about vaccination sites is available at http://www.moh.gov.bt/vaccination-sites/.
- The U.S. government does not plan to provide COVID-19 vaccinations to private U.S. citizens overseas. Please follow host country developments and guidelines for COVID-19 vaccination.
- Information from the CDC regarding COVID-19 vaccination.
- Visit the FDA’s website to learn more about FDA-approved vaccines in the United States.
Entry and Exit Requirements
- Are U.S. citizens permitted to enter Bhutan? Yes, depending on the purpose of travel. S. citizens may enter if they are experts/consultants traveling to Bhutan to render critical services or if they are residents of Bhutan. Entry for tourist purposes is suspended at this time.
- Is a negative COVID-19 test (PCR and/or serology) required for entry? Yes, All foreigners entering Bhutan must produce a COVID-19 negative certificate at the time of boarding and at the port of entry. The test must be carried out not earlier than 72 hours prior to leaving the country of origin.
- Are health screening procedures in place at airports and other ports of entry? All individuals entering Bhutan are required to undergo mandatory testing and a 21-day quarantine upon arrival. Cost of the testing, quarantine, and any medical care for foreigners are the responsibility of the traveler.
- Is a curfew in place? No.
- Are there restrictions on intercity or interstate travel? No, though the government requires a 7-day quarantine when traveling from designated high-risk areas to low-risk areas.
- Are U.S. citizens required to quarantine? Yes, every traveler without exception must quarantine for 21 days upon arrival in a pre-identified quarantine center or government facility. Cost of the quarantine is the responsibility of the traveler.
- Are commercial flights operating? Yes, weekly flights are available from India, Nepal, Bangladesh, and Thailand. Flight availability is subject to change. Travelers are encouraged to contact the airlines directly for up-to-date schedules. Additionally, travelers are encouraged to review the COVID-19 information pages for the countries they will transit through to determine if there are other requirements needed for their journey. These are pages are available on the U.S. embassy website for each country.
- Prior to arrival, all passengers are required to complete a Health Declaration Form
- Is public transportation operating? Yes, though hours of operation vary depending on local COVID measures. Please follow local media for measures in your area and verify with official Government of Bhutan sources.
Fines for Non-Compliance
- Individuals who break quarantine may be fined and/or detained. The severity of the punishment for non-compliance may vary.
- U.S. Embassy New Delhi provides visa and U.S. citizenship services to individuals in Bhutan. The U.S. Embassy in New Delhi is open for limited routine visa and citizens services. We continue to provide emergency services to U.S. citizens. Due to the 21-day required quarantine, U.S. consuls are unable to travel to Bhutan to provide services for children with expired U.S. passports or for infants who need a Consular Report of Birth Abroad. We encourage parents of children in need of citizenship documents to notify us at ACSND@state.gov. For information on visas, click here, and for U.S. citizens click here.
- U.S. citizens and visa applicants who are granted appointments at U.S. Embassy New Delhi or any U.S. consulate in India must wear masks upon entering the premises and are prohibited from entering these facilities if they have symptoms of COVID-19 or have been exposed to anyone known to have tested positive for COVID-19 in the previous 14 days.
Below are sources of local COVID-19 information in English. U.S. citizens should closely monitor trusted local news sources and local authorities’ communications for updates and information. This list is not exhaustive:
The Bhutanese Ministry of Health has a 24/7 hotline at 2121 for COVID inquires and 6060 for elderly individuals in need.