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TRAVEL INFORMATION

Vacunas Etiopía

Vaccinations

A yellow fever vaccination certificate is not required to enter Ethiopia unless you are coming from an endemic area. However, please note that Ethiopia is listed in the endemic zone for yellow fever so travellers arriving from non-endemic areas are recommended to get the vaccine. It is also advisable to be immunised for Hepatitis A and B, Typhoid and Polio.

Malaria is a health issue for many Ethiopians, especially for those living in lowland areas. However, Malaria is not a problem in highlands (above 1,600 meters above sea level), including Addis Ababa, Lalibela, Axum, Mekele, Gondar and Harar. Some popular destinations such as Awassa, Bahir Dar and Lake Tana’s surroundings can pose a risk for Malaria especially at the end of the rainy season (October-November). Consequently, it is highly advisable to bring mosquito repellent and discuss anti-malarial tablets with your health professional before you travel.

It is highly recommended to purchase health insurance for the duration of your stay in Ethiopia. In addition, a first aid pack is essential and it should include: antihistamine, antiseptic cream for insect bites, plasters, high SPF sunscreen, anti diarrhoea medication and oral rehydration salts in case of severe dehydration. Please note that on arrival to Addis, many travels forget the strength of the sun due to the high altitude and get sunburnt very quickly. It is advisable to protect your skin accordingly as UV strength across Ethiopia is high.

For more information on vaccines and health issues please check this link.


Visa

Tourist visas (for one or three months, single entry) are available in the following link. Please note there are other websites that are not official and may charge extra fee for issuing tourist visas to Ethiopia.

Electronic visas are available for tourists from most of European countries as well as the USA, Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Argentina, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Kenya, Japan, Korea, India, China and Russia.

Applications can be made online at www.evisa.gov.et. Please note the following is required:

  • Arrival information
  • Personal details
  • A passport size photo
  • A copy of your scanned passport (passport must be valid for at least 6 months from the date you intend to travel to Ethiopia.)
  • Non-refundable payment fee (MasterCard, Visa and American Express are accepted)

It is also possible to obtain a business visa of up to three months validity upon arrival with the prior arrangements made by the sponsoring organisation in Ethiopia. The visa extension fees are currently $100 for a one month extension (first time), $150 for a fifteen days extension (second time) and $200 for a 10 days extension (third time).

If the traveller’s visa expires before the departure, they will be required to obtain a visa extension at the Immigration Office in Addis Ababa. There is an overstay penalty fee of $5 a day from one to fifteen days and $10 a day after fifteen days. In such cases, the traveller may also be required to pay a penalty of up to 4,000 ETB ($300) before being allowed to leave Ethiopia.

Tourist visas Ethiopia

Domestic flights Ethiopia

Domestic flights

When travelling to Ethiopia, it is important to know that domestic fares are considerably reduced (by more than 40%) if your international ticket to travel to the country has been purchased with Ethiopian Airlines.

Please be aware that Ethiopian Airlines, as the only domestic carrier, requires the ticket number in order to make the discount for any domestic flights.

For further information please click here.


Weather in Ethiopia

The weather in Ethiopia depends tremendously on the elevation of the region. When planning a trip, it is advisable to check the average temperatures of the region you plan to visit due to this geographical variation. For example, on a trip to South and the Bale Mountains temperatures are low and warm clothing is essential. In contrast, a trip to the North and the Danakil Depression, you can easily experience daytime temperatures above 50ºC (122ºF).

The Ethiopian climate is actually quite pleasant for tourism due to the altitude. Thus, on the historic North route situated in the Ethiopian highlands, temperatures vary on average of 15ºC (59ºF) and 27ºC (80ºF). On the other hand, in some southern areas of Ethiopia its warmer on average with temperatures reaching up to 32ºC (90ºF).

The rainy season normally starts mid-June and it will continue until early October but sometimes this pattern may change from the Rift Valley area (starting and ending a few weeks earlier than in the highlands) to the Omo Valley (concentrating the rainy season in March, April and May).

Weather Ethiopia

Best time to travel to Ethiopia

Best time to travel to Ethiopia

The best time to travel to Ethiopia is during the dry season (mid-October to May). Depending on your budget, you may prefer to visit Ethiopia during the low season (June to September). Outside of peak season there are still plenty of things to do and enjoy, including some widely-known and unique religious festivals such as Timket or Meskel.

North:

If you are planning to visit the northern highlands of Ethiopia, the best time is October to March although it does not rain very heavily during the rainy season. In our “Northern Route” itinerary, trekking in the Simien Mountains can be included, which it is advisable to do it from September to November when it is dry, green and dust-free.

South:

However, if you choose our “Southern Route” itinerary, [INSERT LINK TO ITINERARY] to experience the lifestyle of more than 50 unique tribes in the Omo Valley region of South Western Ethiopia, the best time to visit is from August to October.

Danakil Depression:

Our itinerary to the North East and the Danakil Depression, one of the hottest places on Earth reaching temperatures of 50ºC (122ºF), is best visited from November to early January.

As Ethiopia is such a large country, encompassing many diverse regions, environments and climates, there is always something to do at whichever time of year you chose to travel. If you have any specific questions regarding any of our itineraries or best times to travel, please contact us and we’d be happy to advise on destination suited to the time of year.


Money exchange

Ethiopian Birr (ETB) is the local currency and it is available in denominations of 5, 10, 50 and 100 notes. It is easy to exchange US dollars or euros into ETB at the airport or any Ethiopian bank upon arrival. Nevertheless, note that Ethiopian banks will ask you for a receipt proving your foreign currency exchange in case you want to change ETB back to your foreign currency before leaving. Bank opening hours are usually from 8am to 5pm (Monday to Saturday).

Credit cards are not commonly accepted for payments apart from hotels, but you can use ATM machines in Addis Ababa. ATMs are also becoming common in other main cities too. Please check the transaction fees of your bank before using an ATM and note that 4,000 ETB is normally the maximum amount that can be withdrawn per day.

Money exchange

Telephone and Internet access

Telephone and Internet access

EthioTelecom is the only telecommunication operator in Ethiopia. It is easy to buy a SIM card by providing a photocopy of your passport and paying a 300 ETB fee at any branch of the EthioTelecom in Addis Ababa. Wi-Fi Internet access is available in most hotels of the capital.

However, it is more difficult to find wireless connections in smaller cities.


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