Lebanon Travel Information
Hundreds of covid-19 infected people have been
confirmed in Lebanon, and new cases are reported daily.
The number of deaths due to the virus is still low. With
effect from March 15, the Lebanese authorities
introduced a medical emergency to limit the spread of
infection in the community. The measures include the
temporary closure of border crossings, ports and Beirut
airport, a general curfew between 21:00 and 05:00 and a
general call to limit their outside time to absolutely
necessary errands. Grocery stores and pharmacies are
open. Banks and other services are closed. The measures
have been extended until 10 May. Norwegian citizens are
encouraged to reconsider planned travel, in line with
the Ministry of Foreign Affairs travel advice related to
the spread of the coronavirus.
Since October 17, there have been extensive
demonstrations throughout Lebanon. Node in Beirut, main
roads to and from Beirut, as well as roads in and around
other cities are periodically blocked. It can therefore
be difficult to move around. Violent clashes occur.
Lebanon is in a serious financial crisis and banks
are exercising some form of capital controls. It is
currently not possible to withdraw US dollars with
international credit cards in ATMs, but local currency
is available in ATMs that accept international credit
Norwegian travelers are advised to bring US dollars.
Credit cards are generally accepted in Beirut and most
major tourist destinations. Travelers should be aware
that some businesses, including restaurants and hotels,
want cash payment. It is recommended to inquire with
hotels ahead of the trip.
- Countryaah: Beirut is the capital
of Lebanon. Check to find information of population, geography, history,
and economy about the capital city.
The situation remains unclear and can change quickly.
Norwegian travelers are encouraged to take the necessary
precautions when traveling to or staying in Lebanon.
Norwegian travelers and residents are encouraged to
avoid large crowds, keep abreast of developments, follow
local news and follow the advice of local authorities.
It is the individual's responsibility to assess
whether it is justifiable to complete the journey.
Norwegian travelers are encouraged to take out private
travel insurance for all trips to Lebanon, as well as to
register on reiseregistrering.no.
The security situation in Lebanon is also affected by
the war in neighboring Syria. There is generally high
security preparedness in the country. In some areas
there is still the presence of armed militia.
The risk of terrorist attacks or outbreaks of armed
clashes is higher in some areas. This is especially true
in the north-east of the Bekaa Valley, areas along the
border with Syria, Beirut's southern suburbs, Tripoli
and the province of northern Lebanon and several of the
Palestinian refugee camps. Security-threatening events
along the so-called "blue line" towards Israel or in
Unifil's area of operation may occur. Terrorist
attacks or other security-threatening incidents in other
areas of Lebanon cannot be ruled out.
Any visits to Palestinian refugee camps should take
place through organizations with sufficient local
insight and after a closer assessment of the security
situation in the camp in question.
Norwegian travelers should be aware that cluster
munitions and anti-personnel mines can still be found in
parts of Lebanon. When walking, it is recommended to
follow marked trails and inquire with the locals in the
There are high accident rates in traffic. It runs at
high speeds and the traffic picture is unclear and
unpredictable. Driving patterns are different than in
Norway, and traffic rules are not always observed. It is
encouraged to use taxis only from registered companies,
which are clearly marked. The use of so-called service
taxis, where you share taxis with several unknowns, is
There is a risk of an earthquake in Lebanon. In
February 2008, the country was hit by several
earthquakes, the largest of which was 5.3 on Richter's
scale. Only minor injuries were reported.
Local emergency numbers are: 112 - general emergency
number (police), 140 - medical assistance/ambulance
(Lebanese Red Cross), 175 - fire department.
In the event of a crisis or emergency contact the
embassy by phone:
+961 (0) 1 763 200 or e-mail [email protected]
Outside the embassy's opening hours, the UD's 24-hour
operating center can be contacted by phone: +47 23 95 00
00 or e-mail: [email protected]
Please note that entry regulations may change. The
Foreign Service is not responsible if the following
information on entry regulations or visa requirements is
changed at short notice. It is the responsibility of the
traveler to ensure that travel documents are valid for
entry and to familiarize themselves with the current
entry rules for each country.
Norwegian citizens need a visa to stay in Lebanon.
Travelers on a Norwegian passport can obtain a tourist
visa upon arrival at Beirut airport. The visa is free of
charge and usually applies for one month upon entry. It
can normally be renewed for up to 90 days by visiting
General Security's offices. To fill in the required
papers on arrival, travelers are advised to have readily
available addresses to stay at during their stay in
Visas can also be applied for in advance from the
Lebanese Embassy or Consulate.
Passport must be valid for up to six months after
scheduled departure date. Israeli stamp in the passport
must not occur. Travelers may be rejected upon arrival
if the travel document contains this.
Norwegians traveling to Lebanon with emergency
passports may be denied entry, as emergency passports
are not accepted by Lebanese authorities. From
experience, Norwegian citizens of Lebanese origin, or
stateless Palestinians born in Lebanon, are considered
by Lebanese authorities as Lebanese citizens and not
Norwegian citizens. This limits the embassy's ability to
reach consular assistance if arrested by Lebanese
Travelers with a travel certificate for
refugees/foreigners passports (green and blue travel
document) must obtain a visa at the Lebanese Embassy in
Stockholm in advance.
Objects for personal use, such as electrical
equipment, camcorders, etc. need not be declared in
customs upon arrival and departure. You can bring pets
if you have a veterinary certificate. Further
information on customs and other rules can be obtained
from the Lebanese Embassy in Stockholm.
Coronavirus (covid-19): Norwegian
travelers should keep abreast of the development of the
coronavirus. There are hundreds of confirmed cases of
infection in Lebanon, and new cases are reported daily.
The number of deaths is currently low, and people who
have recovered are also reported. In cooperation with
the WHO, the authorities have implemented several
measures to limit the risk of infection.
With effect from March 15, the Lebanese authorities
introduced a medical emergency to limit the spread of
infection in the community. The scheme has been extended
and expanded a number of times and the measures now
include temporary closure of border crossings, ports and
Beirut airport, a general curfew between 21:00 and 05:00
and a general call to limit its outside time to
absolutely necessary errands. Grocery stores and
pharmacies are open, while all other service and
entertainment offerings are closed. The banks are closed
to the public. The measures are valid until 10 May.
Keep in touch with your travel agent or airline.
Norwegian citizens are encouraged to reconsider planned
travel, in line with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
travel advice related to the spread of the coronavirus.
Further measures may be taken at short notice.
The authorities have created their own telephone
number, +961 (0) 1 59 44 59, to be used in the event of
suspected infection. It is also possible to call the
general emergency line in Lebanon, 1214 or Lebanese Red
Otherwise, follow the advice of local authorities,
guidance and instructions on how to deal with the
situation. Information is available, among other things,
on the Lebanese Ministry of Health's website (English)
and via the website of the WHO's country office in
The public health services in Lebanon are limited,
and reduced access to health services, both private and
public, must be expected.
You can find more information and guidance from the
Norwegian health authorities on the website of the
Norwegian Institute of Public Health. See also UD's
answers to frequently asked questions about travel and
Many private Lebanese hospitals and medical services
in the largest cities hold high standards. In rural
areas, however, the standard is often lower. Medical
treatment can be very costly in Lebanon and travelers
are strongly encouraged to take out travel insurance
before departure. Some hospitals require cash payment
and do not take credit cards.
Tap water should not be drunk. Feel free to check the
seal on water bottles.
Seek medical advice well in advance of departure for
any vaccines. See the overview of which vaccines the
National Institute of Public Health recommends for short
or longer trips to Lebanon.
For more information see; Public Health Institute,
and World Health Organization (WHO) web pages about
Time difference in relation to Norway is + 1 hour.
National phone code is +961. There are several
nationwide GSM networks available. The current is 220
volts. The sockets are just like the ones you are used
to in Norway. Power outages occur regularly.
Lebanon's currency unit is Lebanese pounds but US
dollar usage is also widespread. The exchange rate
between the two is (as of 2018) standardized to USD 1 =
Visa and Mastercard can be used to withdraw local
currency and US dollars from ATMs. Banks are usually
open from 08:30 to 14:00 and are closed on Sundays.
Credit cards are accepted in major cities in several
shops, restaurants and hotels. Several shops in the
cities are open all day until approx. 22:00. Some shops
are closed on Sundays.
National holidays are: January 1, January 6 (Armenian
Christmas Eve), February 9 (St. Maroun's Day), March 25
(Mary's Message Day), Catholic and Orthodox holidays in
connection with Easter (moving), May 1, May 25 (release
day), eid al fitr (moving), August 15 (Mary ascension),
eid el adha (moving), hijiri (moving), ashoura (moving),
November 22 (Independence Day) and 25-26 . December.
Beyond Arabic, English and French are widely used.
Culture and cultural codes vary from different parts of
the country. Beirut has a modern and many places liberal
culture, while several other cities/towns are more
traditional and imply a somewhat stricter dress code.
This also applies to religious sites and buildings.
Always carry a copy of your passport with you. For
crossings at military checkpoints in the country,
authorities periodically check the passport of a
traveler or a valid ID document. When passing control
posts, follow the instructions and exercise caution.
Taking pictures of security forces and military
checkpoints is prohibited. To travel south and east of
Tire/Sour, you need permission from the military office
in Saida. Unfortunately, the embassy cannot assist in
obtaining such permits.
Possession of drugs is prohibited and the penalty is
high, even in small quantities. Lebanese law has a
provision against "any sexual act of unlawful nature"
which opens the way to prosecute homosexual acts.
However, this section is rarely used.