The new program, which will provide U.S. citizens with clear, timely, and reliable safety and security information, includes 4 levels of advice ranging from "exercise normal precautions" to "do not travel".
The new travel advisory scale ranks countries from one to four on safety and risk factors. There is some risk in any worldwide travel. Since violence, terrorist attacks, and political unrest occur without foreknowledge, The U.S. Department of State strongly advises American travelers "to maintain a high level of vigilance" and take the necessary precautions to increase security awareness.
Do Not Travel (red): This level is given to areas where there is the "greater likelihood of life-threatening risks".
The advisory informs American citizens that the USA government has limited ability to provide emergency services to them in Pakistan due to the security environment.
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Tamaulipas - located on the US border - and Sinaloa, Colima, Michoacan and Guerrero on the Pacific coast have a level four "do not travel" advisory, marking the highest warning issued by the department. "These are simply based on our assessment of the security situation, and what we need to tell United States citizens who might be traveling or living in that country".
But as a rough guide, America's per capita murder rate of 4.88 per 100,000 people puts it between Cuba at 4.72 ("reconsider travel") and Somalia at 5.56 ("do not travel").
When the alert system was updated the Department of State added five Mexican states to the do not travel list.
Balochistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (Fata) are placed in the "do not travel" category due to terrorism. The new classifications are created to simplify travel advisory information so people can easily decide if a particular destination is safe enough to visit.
The Department's newly-redesigned hub for traveler information, travel.state.gov, will host all Travel Advisories, recent Alerts issued for each country, and an interactive map in mobile-friendly formats. Turkey, Russia and Venezuela are considered level 3. "The Department of State provides additional advice for travelers in these areas in the Travel Advisory" says the Department of State". While alerts were generally shorter-term or related to specific events, and warnings were meant to be stronger, the new system is created to provide additional clarity and guidance. "It's our largest destination for USA citizens traveling aboard".