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Marshall Islands 2017 Crime & Safety Report

East Asia & Pacific > Marshall Islands; East Asia & Pacific > Marshall Islands > Majuro

Overall Crime and Safety Situation

U.S. Embassy Majuro does not assume responsibility for the professional ability or integrity of the persons or firms appearing in this report. The American Citizens Services (ACS) Unit cannot recommend a particular individual or establishment and assumes no responsibility for the quality of service provided.

THE U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE HAS ASSESSED MAJURO AS BEING A LOW-THREAT LOCATION FOR CRIME DIRECTED AT OR AFFECTING OFFICIAL U.S. GOVERNMENT INTERESTS.

Please review OSAC’s Marshall Islands-specific webpage for proprietary analytic reports, Consular Messages, and contact information.

Crime Threats

Non-confrontational property crimes (home break-ins) are the crimes that are most likely to affect U.S. citizens residing in or traveling to the Republic of the Marshall Islands (RMI).

Traveling on foot after dark in the RMI can be dangerous due to the lack of sidewalks, poor lighting on roads, and inebriated drivers.

Transportation-Safety Situation

Road Safety and Road Conditions

Traffic in the RMI can be unpredictable. Motorists must take special care to be cognizant of other drivers, who may not obey traffic signals/signs or stay in their lane. The traffic infrastructure is less developed than in the U.S., and signage or warnings of ongoing road works are rare. Road conditions can vary substantially from paved and well maintained roads to dirt tracks.

Public Transportation Conditions

U.S. government personnel are allowed to use taxis and other public transportation in RMI. The RSO recommends travelers use taxis for transportation after dark.

Terrorism Threat

THE U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE HAS ASSESSED MAJURO AS BEING A LOW-THREAT LOCATION FOR TERRORIST ACTIVITY DIRECTED AT OR AFFECTING OFFICIAL U.S. GOVERNMENT INTERESTS.

Political, Economic, Religious, and Ethnic Violence

THE U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE HAS ASSESSED MAJURO AS BEING A LOW-THREAT LOCATION FOR POLITICAL VIOLENCE DIRECTED AT OR AFFECTING OFFICIAL U.S. GOVERNMENT INTERESTS.

Post-specific Concerns

Environmental Hazards

The MRI faces an array of potential natural disasters (tsunamis, typhoons/tropical storms, coastal flooding, drought). A slight rise in sea level can flood many of the islands and atolls that make up the RMI. Typhoons that impact the Western Pacific region regularly begin as tropical storms in the Marshall Island region. And, while the typical typhoon season occurs between May and November, RMI can experience damaging storms year-round. Travelers and visitors should monitor the weather closely during typhoon season and are encouraged to depart the RMI if their island is likely to be affected by a strong storm.    

Critical Infrastructure

Internet connectivity problems are common and can prevent credit card transactions, even when businesses are willing to accept them.

Economic Concerns

The RMI uses U.S. dollars as their currency. Travelers should bring sufficient cash or cash equivalents for their stay. Some businesses or hotels will not accept credit cards.

Personal Identity Concerns

Women traveling alone on roads have been targeted for crime.

Drug-related Crimes

Alcohol abuse is common and can lead to crimes (assault, domestic violence, vandalism).

Police Response

The capacity of local police to sufficiently respond to and assist victims of crime and traffic accidents is limited due to a lack of response vehicles, radios, and other essential equipment, as well as inadequate training.

It is important that foreigners remain calm and polite when interacting with the police to avoid misunderstandings.

How to Handle Incidents of Police Detention or Harassment

In the event of arrest or detention by the police, contact the U.S. Embassy at 247-4011. Emergency calls made after hours or on holidays will be transferred to a 24/7 duty officer.

Crime Victim Assistance

All incidents of crime should be reported to the local police.

Police: 911; Main Police Station: (692) 625-8666
Fire: 911

Medical Emergencies

Health problems may be exacerbated by overseas travel and may require a level of medical care that is not available in the RMI.

Travelers are advised to bring a sufficient supply of any needed medications as they will be difficult, if not impossible, to acquire locally. For more information, please refer to OSAC’s Report, “Traveling with Medications.”

Contact Information for Available Medical Services

Health facilities in Majuro and Ebeye are adequate for routine medical problems. There are few or no health facilities available elsewhere in the Marshall Islands.

Majuro Hospital: (692) 625-4144

Insurance Guidance

Serious medical problems requiring hospitalization and/or medical evacuation to the U.S. can cost several thousand dollars.  

Country-specific Vaccination and Health Guidance

Travelers should drink bottled water while in the RMI.

The State Department's Regional Medical Officer recommends that visitors ensure their Tetanus/Diphtheria (TD), Measles/Mumps/Rubella (MMR), Typhoid, Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, and Polio vaccinations are up to date.

Tuberculosis is an increasingly serious health concern in the Marshall Islands. The incidence of tuberculosis is high, and there are cases of multidrug-resistant tuberculosis (MDRTB) under quarantine or receiving treatment.

The CDC offers additional information on vaccines and health guidance for Marshall Islands.

U.S. Embassy Contact Information

Embassy Address and Hours of Operation

U.S. Embassy Majuro is located on the ocean-side of the island's major road, approximately two miles east of the airport (There is no street address).

Hours: Mon-Thurs, 0800-1730; Fri, 0800-1500

Embassy Contact Numbers

Telephone: (692) 247-4011
Emergency after-hours: (692) 455 8213
Website: http://Majuro.usembassy.gov

Embassy Guidance

The State Department encourages all travelers to enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP). This provides travel advisories from the U.S. Embassy Majuro and the State Department

The RMI is a member of the Freely Associated States and, as such, citizens of the RMI can travel to the U.S. without applying for a visa.

Additional Resources

Marshall Islands Information Sheet