Algeria Laws: Some Expert Travel Safety Advice

Algeria is a tightly controlled country. Increased violence and civil unrest means police crackdowns are common.

It's always a good idea to remain out of trouble at the best of times, but in Algeria, the need for personal vigilance is even more important.

Like many countries in the Middle East and North Africa, Algeria has its own set of rules and regulations which many of us see as very strange.

But the laws are there, and it's best to obey them and have a smooth experience in Algeria.

Money in Algeria

Algerian authorities like to keep a close eye on the money coming in and out of the country, and you will have to abide by the rules.

All foreign currency being brought into Algeria should be disclosed when entering the country by filling in an official form.

Each person leaving Algeria will be stopped and asked if he/she has any foreign money and will possibly be searched.

If foreign currency was declared when entering the country, any disparity between the amount arrived with, and the amount held at departure, must be accounted for.

Sounds like an incredible hassle, but this is the deal the government wishes to impose on travellers inside its borders

If a traveller failed to declare any currency when entering Algeria, and is found to possess foreign currency while exiting the country, the penalties may be severe.


This really is the golden rule of travelling in developing countries, actually all countries.

Don't take photos of police or military installations. Bridges and dams are also a bad idea.

There is a high level of security in all these places and terrorism is rife - so take photos of the natural wonder and leave the military barracks for the government.

Drugs and Weapons

Algeria isn't the place you want to travel to if you wish to indulge in drugs.

Whether they are hard drugs or soft drugs, the rules are all the same, and there is no tolerance.

Penalties for drug use or trafficking of drugs include imprisonment.

This is certainly not the place you will wish to be, so leave all drugs alone.

And when it comes to weapons, if you have any, leave them at home Rambo. You don't want to end up in jail or in more serious trouble.


As the rule through most African nations, homosexuality is illegal.

For many Western travellers this may be strange and repressive, but its very real in Africa and the rules should not be tested. You will find yourself in trouble.

Locals don't take fondly to this behaviour.

So if you are gay, then it's best to avoid any sign of it while in Algeria.

Breaking this rule will end in jail.

Religion and Behaviour - A Touchy Topic

Algeria is a Muslim country.

Islamism has had a significant impact on Algerian society.

It's common for women to wear full veils and most are religiously conservative.

When you travel to Algeria remember this, it's the best way to avoid any drama.

In Algeria it is against the law to attempt to convert Muslims to another faith or to distribute material that may be seen by local authorities as an attempt to convert Muslims to another faith.

The freedoms many people enjoy in liberal Western societies simply aren't enjoyed in Algeria.

There are conservative standards of dress and behaviour in Algeria, particularly for women, and you should take care not to offend.

Physical contact between men and women in public should also be avoided. Public displays of affection can cause offence, particularly in rural and traditional areas and near mosques, religious shrines and religious educational institutes.

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  • Nes said

    you are an idiot for several reasons . 1) what exactly are these strict drug laws that you cannot quote? 2) The freedoms many people enjoy simply aren't allowed in Algeria.. Hmm what's that getting naked and spewing all over town on a Friday and Saturday night? 3) it is common for most woman to wear veils? have you been to Algeria because it doesn't sound like it 4) you can't take pictures of bridges, again your extremely uninformed and I suggest you visit and update your facts. In fact for the most part, your article is very inaccurate at times and YOUR prejudice shines through ;) Your article on terrorism is EVEN WORSE. IF Algeria was so full of terrorists, how is it still standing? why is it not reported if it is such a HUGE problem (We all know the media love a bit of anti-Muslim coverage) you are actually stupid and reading your articles it shocks me that people with such closed minds like yourself are allowed to spread their views online.

  • PhilSylvester said

    thanks for the feedback. Obviously you're very angry, I'm sure you're not usually inclined to be insulting.
    We're always looking for ways to improve our content and I invite you to help. It doesn't matter if you are a good writer or not, if you'd like to email me with some considered and accurate insight into travel safety issues for westerners visiting your country, I'd be delighted to craft them into an article and replace this one.
    You can get me at
    [email protected]

  • GUN said

    85% of the article is False .

    I am an Algerian , and i will describe the true ones :

    About money it's 100% true , cause there is always bad people who steal from others with the name of projects , then escape safely ! it's not a strange rule .


    Of course you don't have to take a picture of Police or Military , it's not in Algeria as exeption , if not all the coutries , and Police , Military are secret this is very logic nothing is strange ! about Bridges and dams it's not true , Bridges of Constantine is a proof and just one example.Whenever it is for terrorists or not , it's very very logic to not to photograph army and security ! what's strange in that !
    Homosexuality it's true that it's HATED in Algeria , we don't see it freedom , how can this be good for humanity if all the mens are together and women all together , how can the humanity advance ! it will disapear , and a lot of problems there in USA and the coutries that support homo .

    Religiously that's not true at 100% , come visit Algeria , especially large cities you will find women just like in the USA or France , with tight pants...etc , but YEAH we don't like that , cause it's not good , it will make a human in passion to do illegal sex , and this one is also a problem when refering to mariage .. BUT it's not forbidden it's free to do what you want , it's like many other countries , it's like when you pee in public , what about seeing a naked woman , this is the strange one ..

    Algeria is a good coutry , has positives and negatives just like anyother thing , Algeria is simple , sometimes amazing , some times strange , but not in a negative way .

    Peace an sorry if it hurts ..

  • GUN said

    Ah , i forgot something , what do you see strange in Drugs laws in Algeria ? drugs are killing the humanity , and some people always describe this as freedom , freedom to smoke weed , freedom homo , freedom in everything is not a good thing , we are humans , we have an organized environment .

  • PhilSylvester said

    Thanks Gun,
    what do you mean by "freedom homo"? I don't understand. Could you explain please.
    Generally though, as I said to a previous poster, we are always open to suggestions for improving our articles. You don't have to be a writer, just send me your contribution to [email protected] and I'll consider them in updating the article.

  • Ekama Noieau said

    Useful and accurate information, I find it strange GUN said most of the information was false and then went onto confirm the vast majority of the information.
    People should be free to take drugs, dress in whatever way they want, take pictures of whatever they want and have sex with whatever they want. These freedoms are the mark of decent society.

  • Sam B. said

    Check out this documentary which was filmed by a French tourist.

    There are certain parts of Algeria that is much more progressive than others. I think the parts about homosexuality are true, and the deeper south you go, the more conservative the country will get -- but Algiers & Oran are places to go if you like to party. Drugs aren't that big of a deal, if you know the right people and are discreet enough.

  • chak said

    "It's common for women to wear full veils and most are religiously conservative" this isn't true at all in algeria women's can wear any think they want and the other laws u mentioned are old or bullshit

  • TiredEastener said

    I would not stress yourselves over this article, westerners love to paint the 'east' as foreign, barbaric and backwards and fail to look in their own back yards. You can't take a picture of the police in the UK and US without being arrested on some made up charges. Also you are visiting the country its not like you are going to live there.Be respectful or do not bother going!!!

  • Lizzy said

    I stayed in Algeria for a while and the women are conservative there some wear hijabs some dont.They wear jeans heels makeup dresses they just dont show all their business..i think its nice to have respect for ourselves as women. And i alao like the idea of waiting for the right person before sex less single moms out there.The only thing that sucked is that there isnt night life for women really. And cafes there is for guys only.. But its awesome to go see the roman ruins and beaches in the capitol. And most people there are sweet and i actually miss it nothing like the us..

  • Hatem said

    Thanks nes for clarification that

  • Ralf Schooneveld said

    Is there a government site where the full law including individual articles can be found?

    I am trying to work together with a shoe designer from Algeria.

  • CHRISTINE said

    I personally would like to visit Algeria,But if possible i would love to have my friend come to United States. I just figured it would be easier for me to visit then him.

  • Pasand Bhagat said


    For last three month I was in Algiers, Algeria.
    My view is very different about this country.

    About the money it's 100% true declare the money if you have more than 5000$ in cash or more than that in your traveller card.
    It would be better if you keep more cash in handy because in Algeria card does not work.
    So if you are thinking to use travellers card in your pocket then you will get trouble for yourself later as 90% of the hotels dont accept cards except from big hotels like Hilton and Al-dajerhs. So better keep cash in handy.

    The country is really peaceful if you love spending some time in peace with your family then go for it.
    you can do lot of shopping because you get more money when you exchange your currency as per my currency 1Rupees = 1.60 Algerian Dinar.

    People are really nice. Specially women are very fashionable in Algeria whoever says that they wears only Hijab is wrong some wears Hijab and some wears jeans and t-shirt and It's good that they respect their religion both men and women. Their idea not to have sex before marriage, not drinking alcohols is some thing that they respect their religion which is good but ofcourse exceptions are always there.

    About terrorism and all..Let me tell you every weekend I used to go to the clubs in the midnight and I haven't faced any problems in that country from taking taxi to reaching club. Infact it's very safe place to live.

    Ofcourse In most of the place you will not find alcohol but you can go to the center of the city where you will get lot of place where they serve alcohol and really good food.
    Food is not the problem but those who are vegetarian will be lil bit of problem because in most of the place they serve non-veg dishes obviously you get the Veg food as well but you won't find that much of variety for yourself.(Pizza and Sandwiches are very popular here).

    If you are going there explore as much as you can it's beautiful country, check out Tipaza, Constantine, Oran, Dessert safari and Kasbah and do try their traditional food like cuscus, charkchukrah, Titli..
    Bon Voyage!

  • Mimi said

    So even if someone from abroad send you a comic book about homosexuality that'll give you trouble?
    You didn't buy it, it can be sent without you knowing what is it about...... Will you be taken responsible and go to jail?
    Just a question

  • yeet said

    this is pretty lit fam but uh idec about this stuff.

  • Juancho said

    Dear Author,

    Algiers is a beautiful country full of honest, respectful and kind people. Like the rest of the world and any country it has minor issues to be considerate off as a guest which are usually related to ones' own western bias and indoctrination. If visiting any country anywhere remember You are a GUEST so act like one! If you turn off your television and stop watching mind control orientated mass media you will be suprised at the fact that there are more similarities of all common peoples of earth than there are differencies. The sad fact is disharmony is profitable for charletans and they sell you falsehoods from birth to grave in every facet of your social education.

    Algerians are hospitable, believe in God and respect cultural traditions as all good societies do. As for alcohol and drugs they destroy lives and often are created by foreign governments clandestinely to pursue illegal war financing. Ask yourselves this simple question: if western controlled elitist interests truly want peace and democracy then why has the western world's self-professed leading nation (the USA) killed 20 million + humans thanks to their military aggression since WW2? They are the worlds No. 1 military arms dealer along with Great Brittain, France, China & Germany etc etc..

    Guess what? How many wars have been started by so called terrorist nations? Know your facts before talking such nonsense about foreign nations. Terrorism is and has always been state sponsored.

    The more important question is to ask which of those countries invaded in the past 20 years had central banks? Bankstars are gangstars and war profiteers. I am not 'anti anyone or anything' I am instead a peaceful loving human who doesn't swallow bullshit. I am for peace and harmony as is 99.9% of all the people I have ever met from any nation. We are humanity! And yes I've been to Algiers and have felt kindness and respect every day I visited and i dont speak a word of Arabic or French!!. P.S. ignorance is easy to spread so be quiet, open your heart, your mind and most importantly your ears until you have something intelligent to write.


    Drug deaths in USA:

    Who sells the most weapons on our planet:

    Newspeak from 1984: understand the origin of words and you will know your human masters by the language they speak and teach. Doublespeak. From your article I summise you have swallowed 'blackwhite' hook, line and sinker.

    I could go on and on with peer reviewed articles on every single subject/falsehhood you mentioned but I believe softly softly is the best approach with any form of ignorance.

  • Marty W said

    I'm American woman planning to go to Oran to spend time with my Algerian fiance. He owns his own home and my plan is to stay with him there. I've heard that there could be a problem with that because we are not yet married.....Please clarify that for me, if you will please....and advise me on what the views of that are, in Algeria.

    Thank you kindly,,


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