Jordan travel guide
It’s easy to see why Lawrence of Arabia was so taken with Jordan. Probably the most appealing destination in the Middle East, this ancient Arab kingdom is a hospitable land packed with epic scenery and momentous relics.
Many travellers visit Jordan with its history in mind, and understandably so. The country is steeped in stories from the distant past, with the ruins to prove it. There’s the 2,000-year-old “lost city” of Petra, carved from rose-red sandstone cliffs by the Nabateans, and the legendary Lawrence of Arabia trail, which takes visitors from his crumbling fort at Azraq to the magnificent deserts of Wadi Rum.
Important biblical sites abound; visitors can trek along pilgrimage routes mentioned in the Old Testament, take in views of the Promised Land revealed to Moses and visit Bethany-by-the-Jordan where John baptised Jesus.
If Jordan’s overwhelming historical sites begin to wear you out, take a restorative dip in the therapeutic waters of the Dead Sea, go scuba diving over coral reefs in the Red Sea or stay in the desert with Bedouins, who offer travellers a glimpse into their traditional way of life.
For all its history and natural beauty, though, Jordan looks forward. Its relatively stable economic and political position in the Middle East has fuelled modernisation, particularly in the capital Amman. With new upmarket hotels, restaurants and bars, the city is no longer just a base from which to explore the ancient sites, but a destination in its own right.
In Jordan, hospitality is king. Everywhere you visit you will hear heartfelt words of welcome, and will often be invited into shops or peoples’ homes for a glass of sweet tea and a conversation. In other places this might prelude a hard-sell campaign of carpet-flogging, but in Jordan, it’s almost always borne simply of an interest to engage with a visitor. As the Jordanians say; “Ahlan wa sahlan” – come in and make yourself at home.
89,342 sq km (34,495 sq miles).
7,747,800 (UN estimate 2016).
90.9 per sq km.
King Abdullah II since 1999.
Prime Minister Bisher Al-Khasawneh since 2020.
Coronavirus travel health
Check the latest information on risk from COVID-19 for Jordan on the TravelHealthPro website.
See the TravelHealthPro website for further advice on travel abroad and reducing spread of respiratory viruses during the COVID-19 pandemic.
All passengers (except children under the age of 5) arriving in Jordan require a negative PCR test within 72hrs of departure to Jordan and must complete a health declaration and passenger locator form.
All passengers (except children under the age of 5 need to register on the ‘visitjordan’ platform before travelling and follow instructions to either book a second PCR test on arrival, or claim a waiver for testing on arrival by uploading evidence that they are fully vaccinated.
You do not need to wait at the airport for PCR test results. You should proceed to your accommodation. The PCR test results will be sent by SMS. Those who test positive with severe symptoms will need to go to a COVID-19 designated hospital for isolation and treatment if required.
Check travel advice for any country that you will transit between the UK and Jordan.
Entry and borders
See Entry requirements to find out what you will need to do when you arrive in Jordan.
Returning to the UK
When you return, you must follow the rules for entering the UK.
You are responsible for organising your own COVID-19 test, in line with UK government requirements. The Ministry of Health has published a list of accredited testing facilities on their website (in Arabic).
Be prepared for your plans to change
No travel is risk-free during COVID. Countries may further restrict travel or bring in new rules at short notice, for example due to a new COVID-19 variant. Check with your travel company or airline for any transport changes which may delay your journey home.
If you test positive for COVID-19, you may need to stay where you are until you test negative. You may also need to seek treatment there.
Plan ahead and make sure you:
- can access money
- understand what your insurance will cover
- can make arrangements to extend your stay and be away for longer than planned
Travel in Jordan
For information on entry to Jordan, see Entry requirements
The Government of Jordan has introduced and enforced measures to tackle the spread of COVID-19. Measures are regularly reviewed and updated. Follow the instructions of the local authorities.
On 1 September 2021, the Government of Jordan ended all curfew restrictions and reopened all sectors and recreational facilities. Curfews and restrictions can however be announced at short notice so you should monitor official announcements.
The Government of Jordan and the Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority (ASEZA) announced that, as of 1 July, visitors will not be allowed into Aqaba through customs centres, the land border crossings of Wadi Al-Yatam and Wadi Araba, or the airport, unless:
- 21 days have passed since receipt of their first dose of a vaccine
- or, for those over six years of age, they have received a negative PCR test within 72 hours before arrival in Aqaba
By law, everyone must comply with social distancing by keeping 1.5 metres away from other people when outside the home, and by wearing a mask when entering public places such as government buildings, shops, companies and health centres. Failure to comply with these rules is punishable by a fine.
Hotels and private rentals are open and available to book. Many public places have hygiene measures in place, including taking a temperature check and sanitising hands upon entry. Wearing a face mask in public places is mandatory.
Healthcare in Jordan
Several hospitals in Jordan have been designated to treat patients with coronavirus.
The Ministry of Health has a dedicated call centre (111) available 24/7 for residents and citizens to utilise in case of any enquiries regarding coronavirus. In an emergency you can also dial 911.
If you develop coronavirus symptoms or have a known exposure to COVID-19 call 111 or contact a doctor immediately and self-quarantine for 14 days. See our list of medical practitioners in Amman.
The legal status of your medication may be different outside the UK. UK medical prescriptions are not valid in Jordan.
View Health for further details on healthcare in Jordan.
COVID-19 vaccines if you live in Jordan
We will update this page when the Government of Jordan announces new information on the national vaccination programme. You can sign up to get email notifications when this page is updated.
The Jordanian national vaccination programme started in February 2021 and is using several vaccines including AstraZeneca, Pfizer-BioNTech and Sinopharm. The Government of Jordan has stated that British nationals resident in Jordan are eligible for vaccination if they choose to join the programme. You can register on the Department for Health website.
Find out more, including about vaccines that are authorised in the UK or approved by the World Health Organisation, on the COVID-19 vaccines if you live abroad.
If you’re a British national living in Jordan, you should seek medical advice from your local healthcare provider. Information about COVID-19 vaccines used in the national programme where you live, including regulatory status, should be available from local authorities.
For information on financial support you can access whilst abroad, visit our financial assistance guidance.
For information on coronavirus in Jordan, visit Ministry of Health website.
The political situation in Jordan is stable. However, protests do sometimes occur in Amman and other cities. The majority of such protests are peaceful but you should take sensible precautions, follow news reports and avoid all political gatherings and demonstrations.
In Amman, protests most often take place on Thursday evenings, near the Prime Ministry at 4th Circle, and on Fridays after midday prayers near the Husseini mosque in downtown Amman. You should take particular care if near these areas at these times. You should also take care when travelling outside Amman, especially at night, and be aware of the possibility of spontaneous demonstrations and road blockages occurring.
The FCDO advises against all but essential travel to within 3km of Jordan’s border with Syria. The situation in southern Syria is fragile and security threats in the form of instability or terrorist activity could arise with little or no notice.
The FCDO advises against all travel to Syria. For more information, see our Syria travel advice.
The FCDO also advises against all travel to Iraq, including the area bordering Jordan. For more information, see our Iraq Travel Advice.
You should take particular care at all border areas and if crossing into any neighbouring country.
Jordanian army and police units patrol the entire border area with both Syria and Iraq. They have been known to engage vehicles and people in the border area and will continue to monitor traffic.
Terrorist groups are present in Syria and Iraq, including those like Daesh (formerly referred to as ISIL) who routinely use kidnapping as a tactic.
Landmines may be located near military installations and borders. Minefields are usually fenced off and marked with a skull and crossbones sign, but fences and signs may be in a poor state of repair.
Petra is one of the world’s most treasured UNESCO Heritage Sites and it attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors annually. It has strict opening and closing hours which all visitors should adhere to. Being inside Petra outside of these hours is not permitted and could lead to arrest and prosecution. Ticket prices are displayed and anyone needing clarification should ask the tourist office staff before agreeing any additional charges.
Crime levels are generally low: most crime is limited to pick-pocketing, occasional bag snatching and theft from cars. Be vigilant and keep your money, passport and valuables secure.
Whilst large numbers of foreigners enjoy visiting Amman and hiking in some of Jordan’s more remote areas, women travellers often receive unwanted attention in the form of verbal and physical harassment by individuals or groups of men. On occasion this can escalate and in recent years there has been an increase in reports of cases of sexual assault. Female visitors and residents should take care when walking or travelling alone even during daylight hours. You should maintain at least the same level of personal security awareness as you would in the UK. See these tips for women travellers.
Jordanian police advise anyone who finds themselves stranded - even in daytime - to call the police on 911.
Disputes between tribes, families, or other social disputes may develop without notice and sometimes involve violence and the use of firearms. You should follow news reports and, if caught in an incident, leave the area and follow any police instructions given.
Don’t accept lifts from strangers. If you have to use a taxi ask your hotel to recommend a reliable driver. Women shouldn’t ride in the front seat of a taxi, particularly when travelling alone.
You can drive in Jordan using an International Driving Permit. Make sure you have third party insurance. In Jordanian law a driver is always considered guilty if they hit a pedestrian. If you’re involved in such an incident, you could face imprisonment and be liable for the payment of hospital bills and other compensation.
In the rainy season (approx. November-March), the Government of Jordan sometimes issues flood alerts, particularly along the Jordan valley. These could impact on drivers and those hiking. You should be alert to potential advisories which can result in diversions and road closures. In the event of an alert affecting you, you should co-operate fully with the authorities.
According to the latest available World Health Organization data, Jordan ranks 48th in the world for the number of deaths per population as a result of road traffic accidents. There have been a number of fatalities recently on the Desert Highway. You should drive with care, especially at night, and avoid driving on unlit roads. Stray animals, broken-down vehicles and unmarked road works are common. If you have an accident, don’t leave the scene before the police have arrived and taken a statement. You can contact the police by calling 911.
The police carry out random security checks. Keep identification documents with you to present at these checkpoints. The police also strictly enforce the speed limit with fixed and hand-held speed traps. They issue on the spot fines of between 15 to 150 Jordanian Dinars.
Front seatbelts are required by law. Failure to wear one can result in a fine. All cars must carry a fire extinguisher and warning triangle. Using a mobile phone while driving is illegal.
Cars and coaches can become trapped by occasional heavy snow falls in winter and roads in mountain areas, including Petra and the surrounding area, can become blocked.
Roads may also occasionally be blocked by political protests and demonstrations. If you encounter such an incident, cooperate fully with the police and authorities.
Many organisations offer trips across Jordan to take advantage of the outdoor activities on offer. The quality of these tour operators varies greatly. You should ensure you are well prepared for any outdoor activities in Jordan with appropriate clothing and sufficient food and water for what can be extreme temperatures.
There are around 80 wadis (valleys) in Jordan. During the rainy season (November to March) there’s a risk of flash floods in these valleys. Before travelling to a wadi check the weather forecast and don’t travel to places where heavy rain is expected for at least one day afterwards. If you’re caught in a flash flood go to a high point and don’t attempt to cross the water. If you’re in a vehicle try to drive to a dry spot. Contact the Civil Defence on 911 if the situation continues.
If you’re considering diving or snorkelling in Aqaba, be aware that safety standards of diving operators can vary considerably. Never dive or snorkel unaccompanied. Where possible make bookings through your tour representative and make sure the operator is accredited with an internationally recognised scheme such as PADI.
Terrorists are very likely to try to carry out attacks in Jordan. Attacks could be indiscriminate including in places visited by foreigners, particularly hotels, shopping malls, restaurants and tourist sites.
There have been a number of incidents in recent years. The most high profile of these included:
On 6 November 2019, an individual armed with a knife carried out an attack in the Roman site in Jerash, which is a popular tourist site. The attack resulted in injuries to 8 people before the police intervened to arrest the perpetrator
On 10 August 2018, an explosive device destroyed a gendarmerie vehicle in Fuheis, killing 2 officers and injuring several others
The authorities in Jordan have successfully disrupted a number of planned attacks and made a number of arrests.
You should be vigilant at all times and keep updated on the situation in the country through local media and travel reports, and by subscribing for updates to this travel advice.
There’s a heightened threat of terrorist attack globally against UK interests and British nationals, from groups or individuals motivated by the conflict in Iraq and Syria.
Local laws reflect the fact that Jordan is a predominantly Islamic country. You should respect local traditions, customs, laws and religions at all times and ensure your actions don’t offend.
The Jordanian government doesn’t interfere with the practice of Christianity but encouraging conversion to the Christian faith is illegal.
Jordan is a conservative society. You should dress modestly and behave courteously.
It’s illegal to drink alcohol on the street but permissible in bars, clubs, hotels and private homes. There are strict alcohol limits for drivers, similar to those of the UK. If you’re found guilty of drink driving you could face a driving ban, a fine or even imprisonment.
Possession, use or trafficking in illegal drugs is a serious offence and can result in a lengthy prison sentence and a heavy fine.
While Jordanian law may not explicitly prohibit homosexual acts, public displays of affection between homosexual couples are not generally tolerated. You could be arrested under other Jordanian laws. See our information and advice page for the LGBT community before you travel.
This page reflects the UK government’s understanding of current rules for people travelling on a full ‘British Citizen’ passport, for the most common types of travel.
The authorities in Jordan set and enforce entry rules. For further information contact the embassy, high commission or consulate of the country or territory you’re travelling to. You should also consider checking with your transport provider or travel company to make sure your passport and other travel documents meet their requirements.
Entry rules in response to coronavirus (COVID-19)
Entry to Jordan
All passengers travelling by land and air must provide evidence of a negative PCR test within 72 hours of their scheduled time of departure to Jordan. You should not use the NHS testing service to get a test in order to facilitate your travel to another country. You should arrange to take a private test.
All passengers need to register on the ‘visitjordan’ platform and follow instructions to either book a PCR test on arrival or claim a waiver by uploading evidence that they are fully vaccinated. An NHS Vaccine card, a doctor’s letter or a hospital printout would all be accepted for passengers travelling to Jordan from the UK.
Visitors will not be allowed into Aqaba through customs centres, the land border crossings of Wadi Al-Yatam and Wadi Araba, or the airport, unless:
- 21 days have passed since receipt of their first dose of a vaccine
- or, for those over six years of age, they have received a negative PCR test 72 hours before arrival in Aqaba
The land crossings between Jordan, Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories are open for travellers.
All passengers arriving at Queen Alia Airport Jordan will need to follow instructions set out by government of Jordan.
International transfer passengers are allowed to transit through Jordanian Airports and require:
- negative PCR test within 72 hours before arrival
- transfer time should not exceed 10 hours
Testing / screening on arrival
Anyone who arrives in Jordan without an exemption or evidence of both doses of the COVID-19 vaccination must take a PCR test on arrival. The cost for a PCR test on arrival is 28JD. You will also need to provide evidence of health insurance covering COVID-19.
All passengers need to register on the ‘visitjordan’ platform and follow instructions to either book a PCR test on arrival or claim a waiver by uploading evidence that they are fully vaccinated.
Passengers arriving from the UK who have received both doses of the COVID-19 vaccination are required only to provide a negative PCR test within 72 hours prior to the time of departure and are not required to conduct a PCR test upon arrival at the Airport.
Testing requirements are subject to change with little or no notice.
Demonstrating your COVID-19 status
Jordan will accept the UK’s proof of COVID-19 recovery and vaccination record. Your NHS appointment card from vaccination centres is not designed to be used as proof of vaccination and should not be used to demonstrate your vaccine status.
Passengers arriving in to Jordan are no longer subject to quarantine measures.
The Government have announced that on arrival in Jordan you will need to provide your contact details, travel information and complete passenger health declaration and locator forms. Passengers will be asked to fill out these forms by their chosen airlines. Passengers arriving will need to install Aman.jo application on their mobile device. This will inform the user if they had contact with an infected person, so the user can seek appropriate medical attention.
Testing on departure
There is no testing requirement on departure, although the Government advises travellers to comply with coronavirus regulations in the destination country.
Regular entry requirements
You’ll need a visa to enter Jordan. You can buy a single entry visa valid for 1 month on arrival at the airports or the Sheikh Hussein/North Border crossing at the Jordan/Israel border.
Check with the Jordanian authorities if you’re planning to cross the Wadi Araba/south border crossing (Aqaba/Eilat) or the Allenby/King Hussein Bridge.
An exit tax, currently 10JD, is payable at all border crossings, except the airports.
If you wish to combine travel to Jordan with a visit to Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories, it’s usually better to get a multiple entry visa before you travel from the Embassy of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan in London.
You can extend your visa after you arrive in Jordan up to a maximum period of 6 months. If you overstay your visa you will be fined. You can apply to extend your visa using the following website. Payment is accepted online.
If you’re entering for tourism you can get a combination of a visa and reduced cost entry to the major tourism sites by applying for a Jordan Pass online.
Your passport should be valid for a minimum period of 6 months from the date of entry into Jordan.
Previous travel to Israel
Evidence of a previous visit to Israel like an Israeli entry/exit stamp in your passport does not normally cause any difficulties when entering Jordan. It is, however, for the Jordanian authorities to determine the right of entry into the country. If you have any concerns, you should contact the Consulate of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan in London.
Yellow fever certificate requirements
Check whether you need a yellow fever certificate by visiting the National Travel Health Network and Centre’s TravelHealthPro website.
You must undergo an HIV test if you intend to stay in Jordan for more than 30 days, either as a resident or as a long-term visitor. The fee to obtain the health certificate is currently 20 Jordanian Dinars.
If you are a British/Jordanian national, you are allowed to use your British passport on arrival, but will need to show your Jordanian passport on departure.
UK Emergency Travel Documents
UK emergency travel documents are accepted for entry, transit and exit from Jordan. However, for entry and transit using an emergency travel document, you’ll need to get a visa from the Jordanian Embassy in the country where the document was issued. For exit using an emergency travel document, you’ll need to get a stamp from the Immigration & Residency department in Amman (not at the airport). A minimum of one month remaining validity is required on an emergency travel document.
Check the latest information on risk from COVID-19 for Jordan on the TravelHealthPro website
See the healthcare information in the Coronavirus section for information on what to do if you think you have coronavirus while in Jordan.
At least 8 weeks before your trip, check the latest country-specific health advice from the National Travel Health Network and Centre (NaTHNaC) on the TravelHealthPro website. Each country-specific page has information on vaccine recommendations, any current health risks or outbreaks, and factsheets with information on staying healthy abroad. Guidance is also available from NHS (Scotland) on the FitForTravel website.
General information on travel vaccinations and a travel health checklist is available on the NHS website. You may then wish to contact your health adviser or pharmacy for advice on other preventive measures and managing any pre-existing medical conditions while you’re abroad.
The legal status and regulation of some medicines prescribed or purchased in the UK can be different in other countries. If you’re travelling with prescription or over-the-counter medicine, read this guidance from NaTHNaC on best practice when travelling with medicines. For further information on the legal status of a specific medicine, you should contact the British Embassy in Amman of the country or territory you’re travelling to.
While travel can be enjoyable, it can sometimes be challenging. There are clear links between mental and physical health, so looking after yourself during travel and when abroad is important. Information on travelling with mental health conditions is available in our guidance page. Further information is also available from the National Travel Health Network and Centre (NaTHNaC).
Other health risks
Cases of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus in patients from Jordan have been reported to the World Health Organization. You can find more information on this virus on the website of the National Travel Health Network and Centre.
Temperatures in summer months can be very high. Drink plenty of water and use high factor sun-block.
Local medical care
Medical facilities outside Amman are basic. In an emergency you should seek treatment in Amman. Emergency treatment is also available in Aqaba. Make sure you have adequate travel health insurance and accessible funds to cover the cost of any medical treatment abroad and repatriation. A list of medical facilities and practitioners is available online.
If you need emergency medical assistance during your trip, dial 911 and ask for an ambulance. You should contact your insurance/medical assistance company promptly if you are referred to a medical facility for treatment.
Cash machines are available throughout Amman and in other major towns and cities. ATMs are less widely available in rural areas, though most petrol stations on major roads offer ATMs.
If you’re abroad and you need emergency help from the UK government, contact the nearest British embassy, consulate or high commission. If you need urgent help because something has happened to a friend or relative abroad, contact the FCDO in London on 020 7008 5000 (24 hours).
Foreign travel checklist
Read our foreign travel checklist to help you plan for your trip abroad and stay safe while you’re there.
The FCDO travel advice helps you make your own decisions about foreign travel. Your safety is our main concern, but we can’t provide tailored advice for individual trips. If you’re concerned about whether or not it’s safe for you to travel, you should read the travel advice for the country or territory you’re travelling to, together with information from other sources you’ve identified, before making your own decision on whether to travel. Only you can decide whether it’s safe for you to travel.
When we judge the level of risk to British nationals in a particular place has become unacceptably high, we’ll state on the travel advice page for that country or territory that we advise against all or all but essential travel. Read more about how the FCDO assesses and categorises risk in foreign travel advice.
Our crisis overseas page suggests additional things you can do before and during foreign travel to help you stay safe.
Refunds and cancellations
If you wish to cancel or change a holiday that you’ve booked, you should contact your travel company. The question of refunds and cancellations is a matter for you and your travel company. Travel companies make their own decisions about whether or not to offer customers a refund. Many of them use our travel advice to help them reach these decisions, but we do not instruct travel companies on when they can or can’t offer a refund to their customers.
For more information about your rights if you wish to cancel a holiday, visit the Citizen’s Advice Bureau website. For help resolving problems with a flight booking, visit the website of the Civil Aviation Authority. For questions about travel insurance, contact your insurance provider and if you’re not happy with their response, you can complain to the Financial Ombudsman Service.
Registering your travel details with us
We’re no longer asking people to register with us before travel. Our foreign travel checklist and crisis overseas page suggest things you can do before and during foreign travel to plan your trip and stay safe.
Previous versions of FCDO travel advice
If you’re looking for a previous version of the FCDO travel advice, visit the National Archives website. Versions prior to 2 September 2020 will be archived as FCO travel advice. If you can’t find the page you’re looking for there, send the Travel Advice Team a request.
If you’re a British national and you have a question about travelling abroad that isn’t covered in our foreign travel advice or elsewhere on GOV.UK, you can submit an enquiry. We’re not able to provide tailored advice for specific trips.