Visa applications in West Africa countries to road trip;
Most important thing in West Africa that You need to know which countries visa where you can easily apply and get it? I will try to write up all our visa application around Africa. I will split them up in 3 parts, West Africa, South Africa and East Africa.
I will write our experiences, this is on a Dutch and a Turkish passport. I will write down as well if I have the information about other countries passports.
Our countries we visit in West Africa will be Morocco, Western Sahara, Mauritania, Senegal, The Gambia, Guinea Bissau, Guinea (Conakry), Mali, Burkina Faso, Togo, Benin, Nigeria, Cameroon, Gabon, Republic Congo, Democratic Republic Congo and Angola.
Visa on arrival and it’s free for both of us. Also free for other European passports, also for Australian passport it’s free.
The visa for Morocco is valid here as the Western Sahara is under control by Morocco you won’t even pass a real border.
Visa on arrival, the price is 55 euro. Make sure you have euro’s, they will give you a really bad rate if you pay in dollars or dirham. We only had dollars and ended up paying 70 dollar each. If you don’t have euro’s make sure you exchange them somewhere in the Western Sahara
Visa on arrival, the visa is free for most of the passports. It is free for the Dutch, Turkish, English and Australia.
Visa on arrival, the visa is free for a lot of passports. It is free for Dutch, Turkish and English.
Visa apply in Ziguinchor at the Guinea Bissau embassy, it takes about 5 minutes to get it. He’s just writing it in front of you. The price is 20.000 cfa (30 euro) for a Dutch, Turkish and English passport.
We got our visa in Dakar, apply at the Guinea embassy. Costs 50.000 cfa (76 euro) for a single entrée valid for 30 days. If you want 2 entrees the price is 80.000 cfa (122 euro) the visa is valid for 60 days. It takes 1 working day. You need to bring in copy of your passport, 2 passport photo’s. All goes very easy. Better to do! Get it in Bissau, the costs there are 30.000 cfa (46 euro) you also need copy of your passport and 2 passport photo’s. This is all for a Dutch, Turkish and English passport. I don’t know about the multiple entrée in Bissau.
We got our Mali visa in Nouackott (Mauritania). This goes a little bit strange but easy to apply, you need to give your border crossing for us this was Kouremale as we will enter from Guinea. A single entrée visa valid for 1 month costs 6.500 um (17 euro), your entrée date needs to start within 1 month from the date you apply, otherwise you get a double entrée and visa that’s 2 months valid. The price will then be 10.000 um (26 euro). You need 2 passport photo’s and a copy of your passport. If you apply in the morning you can pick it up in the afternoon.
We got ours in Bamako (Mali). Easy to apply, costs 24.000 cfa (36 euro) for a single entrée visa that is valid for 90 days. You need 2 passport photo’s, copy passport and a copy of your vehicle papers. Apply in the morning pick up in the afternoon. This is for all passports
Better to do! (see VTE Visa).
Visa on arrival, costs 10.000 cfa (15 euro). Valid for 7 days, easy to extend it in Lome for 2.000 cfa (3 euro). This is for all passports
We got our visa in Bamako (Mali). The lady there is not very friendly, you need 2 passport photo’s, copy from the first page of your passport, copy of your passpot, copy from vehicle papers and a copy of a reservation from a hotel in Benin. Costs of the visa is 12.200 cfa (18.5 euro), it takes 2 working days to get it. This is for all passports
We got ours in Bamako (Mali). Easy to apply, costs are various. Dutch, Australian and German passport 60.000 cfa (92 euro), Turkish passport 65.000 cfa (99 euro) and English passport 90.000 cfa (137 euro). You need 2 passport photo’s, copy of your passport and a copy from your vehicle papers. First you pay 20.000 cfa (included the price I write above) to their bank account at the bank next door. This is one of the only places to get the visa for Nigeria.
We got ours in Calabar (Nigeria). Easy to apply takes about 45 minutes to get it. The price is 51.000 cfa (78 euro).
We got ours in Lome (Togo). They wanted a lot of paperwork, luckily we knew everything we needed to take with us. The costs are 50.000 cfa (76 euro) for all passports. You need 2 passport photo’s, copy of your passport, copy yellow fever, copy carnet de passage, hotel reservation, copy of a credit card, copy of motorcycle papers If you have them all ready it only takes 10 minutes. Pick-up is the next day after 3 pm.
We got ours in Lome (Togo). First of all this was just in a flat building, it looked nothing like a embassy, but other overlanders got it here as well and entered Congo, so it must be ok. The price is the highest one we paid so far 90.000 cfa (137 euro) each. You need copies of 3 other West African visas and 2 passport photo’s. Visa is done in 20 minutes.
Congo (Kinshasa, DRC)
We got ours in Cotonou (Benin). Nice embassy, nice and helpful people here. The price is 50.000 cfa (76 euro) for all passports. You need 2 passport photo’s and they make the copies from your passport. It takes about 1,5 hours to get your visa ready.
We got ours in Point Noire (Congo Brazzaville). This is one of the hardest visa’s to get in West Africa. You can apply for the visa on Tuesday and Thursday between 9 and 11 am. You need to put 2000 cfa on their bank account before applying the visa at the Bank of Congo. We had a invitation letter from a friend of us who lives in Angola, copy passport, copy Congo visa, copy DRC visa, 2 passport photo’s and a big smile on our face when we applied. The woman working there only wants to speak French, not even Portuguese what they speak in Angola and she’s not helpful at all. We got a paper to fill in what only is in Portuguese, luckily there is a guard around who do helps people with their application form so we filled it all in and went to the woman at the desk, handover all papers and she straight away gave the invitation letter back, she didn’t want to have it! Instead we needed a letter why we wanted a visa for Angola in Portuguese, off course she pointed us out to where we can get it, it just costs another 2000 cfa extra per person. We got the letter and handed over all papers again and it looked she was satisfied. Now we needed to wait for a phone call, next day we got one around 2 pm. They only speak French again and the only thing I understood is they wanted a reservation, this must be a hotel reservation we thought. We made a quick booking online and printed it at a shop and run to the embassy to hand it over, they accepted and told us to wait for a phone call again. The next day we received the phone call at 2:30 pm, we run to the bank to make the deposit of 75.000 cfa each took the receipt and run to the embassy, we arrived at 3:05 and got send away, tomorrow we open again. When walking away they shout at us to come back and did give us the visa. What a relief! We had a multiple entrée visa in 48 hours.
What about border crossing and bribe in Western Africa?
We made a short video for our Africa journey, roads, life… We hope that you like to watch :
Western Sahara is not only Morocco. Part of it is the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic. You can enter SADR from Morocco in which case you don’t need a visa (small stretch of land between Morocco and Mauritania… don’t recommend exploring further into SADR from this highly trafficked place because of land mines), from Mauritania (a little risky for foreigners according to a Sahrawi man I met traveling that route) or from Algeria (recommended to me by my Sahrawi friends). In either case you will need a visa from those countries. Best to go first to Tindouf, Algeria and then enter SADR, Western Sahara, with locals.
Also thanks for writing about your experiences. This would have been a helpful blog to read before doing this trip (where I traveled around West Africa for some months) and is helpful for the Central Africa trip I am planning.
Thanks Shawn, hope the website gives you the information you are looking for 🙂
Hi, panning a trip in ’19 covering similar territory. Your blog is very helpful. Do you have an address for DRC embassy in Cotonou?
Hello, where to apply DRC visa in Cotonou, Benin GPS coordination is 6.35757, 2.39427.
Enjoy your journey…
We’re planning a trip similar to yours in ’19. Your blog is very useful. Thanks.
Do you have an address for the DRC embassy in Cotonou?