List of Countries That Don't Allow HIV Positive Travelers

Since human immunodeficiency virus, or HIV, appeared in the mid-1980s, many nations have refused visitors who have HIV. Even the United States has had a ban on HIV-infected travelers, although that may be lifted. UNAIDS, the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS, has been working since 2008 with an international task force to eliminate such bans by working with governments.

Signage in an airport in China. (Image: danielvfung/iStock/Getty Images)

Total Ban

The United States, Yemen, China, Oman, Brunei Darussalam, Qatar, United Arab Emirates and Sudan all have had a total ban against travelers who are HIV positive. The United States, however, has moved toward lifting its ban. According to Chris Johnson of The Washington Blade, "A memo issued (Sept. 22, 2009) by U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services instructs officers to place on hold any green card applications for foreign nationals that would otherwise be denied simply because of HIV status. These holds will continue until the release of the final rule change, which is expected later this year from the Department of Health & Human Services." The U.S. has had a ban on HIV-positive travelers since 1987.

Stay Limits

In several places, including the British territory Turks and Caicos, Egypt, Tunisia, Singapore and Iraq, travelers must show proof they are HIV-negative if they intend to stay in the country for longer than a certain period of time, ranging from 10 to 90 days. The UNAIDS group reports its task force is also working to eliminate this limit.


Twenty-nine nations will deport foreigners found to be HIV-positive. These include Uzbekistan, United States, North Korea, China, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Taiwan, Malaysia, Armenia, Bangladesh, Hungary, Bulgaria, South Korea, Tajikistan and Jordan.

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