After the resignation of Bolivia’s former president Evo Morales, the country has descended into chaos causing disruptions to holidaymakers who are currently in Bolivia. The President and senior public officials resigned on 10 November 2019 causing widespread uncertainty that has continued on from elections in October 2019.  The rise in protests and political unrest has resulted in a warning from the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), advising UK citizens against all but essential travel to the country. The FCO has suggested that UK citizens avoid large crowds and public demonstrations, as they have a strong potential to turn violent with little notice. The demonstrations taking place have already led to violence in major towns and cities; La Paz city centre being one of them.

What does this mean for UK citizens currently in Bolivia?

If you are travelling back from Bolivia make sure to check flights and departure times as disruptions are likely to increase. El Alto airport in La Paz in particular, has seen a rise in disruption. Keep updated on changes to travel by contacting your airline or tour operator. A concern for security has increased with the likelihood of express kidnappings which means you should take extra care when travelling. Make sure to verify your taxi by using a secure and registered company.

What does this mean for people who have trips booked to Bolivia?

Those who have booked a trip to Bolivia are advised not to travel. If the FCO advises against travel to a destination and the trip has been booked as part of a package deal, you will be entitled to a refund from the booking company. Those who booked independently and have brought a travel insurance policy will need to check their policy wording.

Some travel insurance policies will offer to cover cancellation if the FCO advises against travel and others may cover cancellation for any cause – but there are some policies that will not offer any cover in this situation.

Those unable to claim on their travel insurance will have to speak to the accommodation provider and transport company to arrange a refund, but this will be dependent on the company’s terms and conditions.

People who travel against the advice of the FCO will void their travel insurance and no cover will be available should anything happen.