Emergency Message for U.S. Citizens: Demonstration Alert

Demonstration Alert – U.S. Embassy Quito, Ecuador – October 7, 2019

The Embassy has received notification that road blockades continue in cities and towns throughout the country as part of ongoing demonstrations.

Although some transportation unions announced the suspension of their strike October 4, other groups continue to protest. The Embassy continues to receive reports of demonstrations and road blockades in cities and towns throughout the country, particularly along the Pan-American highway. There are reports of pockets of violence associated with these demonstrations. Travel may be seriously disrupted during this time.

Indigenous groups, workers unions, social organizations, and some transportation groups have called for a national strike on Wednesday, October 9, 2019. This action will likely involve marches heading toward the historic center of Quito around the presidential palace. Protests could take place in other cities and towns as well.

All U.S. Embassy Quito permanent and temporary personnel are being strongly advised to remain within the greater Quito metropolitan area and to avoid inter-city road travel. U.S. government personnel not already in-country are being asked to reconsider travel to Ecuador at this time.

We urge all U.S. citizens to consider their safety foremost and to reconsider travel within and between cities and provinces. We also urge U.S. citizens to ensure they have adequate supplies of water, food, and fuel.

Information on protests is widely reported on public media and we encourage U.S. citizens to continue to actively monitor the situation until the demonstrations conclude. ECU911 provides nationwide updates at https://www.ecu911.gob.ec/consulta-de-vias/. Agencia Metropolitana de Transito provides updates via Twitter. Follow @AMTQuito or search #AMTInforma on Twitter. To continue to receive important safety information about conditions in Ecuador, please register in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) at: https://step.state.gov/step/.

Flights may continue to be cancelled in and out of Quito as a result of the disruptions to access roads.  Roads to the Mariscal Sucre International Airport of Quito may be blocked at times.  If you have a scheduled flight, please contact the airline directly for additional information.  You may also monitor flight information on the Quito airport website.  Note, however, that flights may be cancelled close to departure time.  Air travel into and out of Guayaquil has not been affected.

Actions to Take

  • Avoid demonstration areas.
  • Monitor local media for updates on road closures and flight cancellations.
  • Avoid crowds.
  • Keep a low profile.
  • Reconsider travel within and between cities and provinces.
  • Ensure adequate supplies of water, food, and fuel.