Visa, Health & security

Biometric Visa

To enter several African countries, visitors must have a valid passport, a pass (laissez-passer), a current travel document bearing your photo, and a biometric entry visa. The validity period of the passport must be at least 6 months.Visa application forms are available free of charge at the embassies of the destination country of your choice. It is also possible to obtain your biometric Visa once at the airport and to do so you must first make a request on the required website of the country of destination. Besides the passport and Visa, vaccination against yellow fever is mandatory for persons wishing to travel to most African countries and this is justified by the presentation of an international vaccination certificate.

Health Tips

Vaccines

In order to enter several African countries, vaccination against yellow fever is mandatory for all and an international vaccination certificate issued by the competent authorities is required as proof. In addition to the mandatory vaccinations, we recommend the following vaccines:

Malaria

In sub-Saharan Africa, malaria is active throughout the year. We recommend that you take prophylaxis before your trip. Regarding the type of prophylaxis and the recurrence to take, we advise you to consult your doctor.

Hepatitis A / Typhoid

Hepatitis A and typhoid can be easily contracted through the consumption of contaminated foods and beverages.

Meningitis

Most countries in sub-Saharan Africa are part of the meningitis belt in Africa. In case of a stay during the dry season, we recommend this vaccine because meningitis is much more common during the long dry season.

Travel insurance

We recommend travel insurance before leaving for Africa. It is very important to learn about the medical services and coverage offered.

What should my travel insurance cover?

  • Repatriation in case of serious illness or accident
  • Medical care
  • 24 hours emergency service and assistance
  • Refund for loss or theft of valuables
  • Your travel insurance should be tailored to the activities during your stay.

Insects

Mosquitoes, ticks and fleas can transmit a number of diseases, some of which can’t be prevented with a vaccine or drugs. However, the risk can be reduced by taking certain precautions.

How to prevent insect bites

  • Cover the skin (long-sleeved shirts, pants, hats).
  • Use a suitable repellent.
  • Sleep in air-conditioned rooms or ones that have a mosquito net.
  • If you sleep outside use a mosquito net.
  • Use Permethrin to treat clothing and Permethrin cream applied directly on the skin, two applications one week apart.

Pour vous protéger des tiques et des moustiques, utilisez un insectifuge avec une teneur en DEET minimale de 20% ou plus et surtout efficace pendant plusieurs heures. En plus du DEET, des produits contenant de l’icaridine aussi connue comme picaridin,  l’huile essentielle d’eucalyptus citronnée et IR3535 offrent une protection efficace contre les insectes.

  • Do not scratch. Use hydrocortisone cream or calamine lotion to reduce itching.
  • Examine your whole body daily for ticks. If discovered, be careful to remove them properly.

Stay away from animals

Most animals avoid humans but can bite or scratch if they feel threatened. Bites and scratches from animals can cause diseases such as rabies.

  • Do not feed or touch strange animals
  • Keep animals away from open wounds
  • Avoid animals saliva
  • Avoid rodents
  • If you discover a bat in your room, call your doctor because bat bites are difficult to detect.
  • All animals can pose a threat, but special attention should be given to dogs, bats, snakes and jellyfish.
  • If bitten: Wash the wound with soap and clean water, seek medical attention immediately. Once back home, inform your doctor of your injury.

Clothing

Sub sahara Africa is quite hot. Do not forget to take light clothes. It is important, especially in some areas to dress appropriately. The clothes should cover the shoulders, shorts and skirts should be at the length of the knees. Bikinis are suitable for the beach, but are not suitable outside the beach. In some areas, there is a drop in temperature in the evenings, so be sure to bring some warm clothes if you intend to stay in one of these areas.

First aid kit: What should my first aid kit contain?

First aid kit

We recommend a first aid kit. It should be fitted out so that it is sufficient for the treatment of minor illnesses and disorders.

  • 1% hydrocortisone cream
  • Antifungal ointment
  • Antiseptics (to clean a wound)
  • Medication (diarrhea)
  • Medication (fever)
  • Aloe Vera Gel (sunburn)
  • Sun cream (min SPF 15)
  • Insect repellent
  • Insect bite ointment
  • Bandages, gauze bandage, tape (to cover a wound)
  • Moleskine (blisters)
  • Elastic bandage (sprains)
  • Disposable gloves
  • Digital thermometer
  • Scissors and safety pins
  • Q-Tips 
  • Tweezers
  • Eye drops
  • Rehydration Salts

If you are on regular medication, bring a sufficient supply for your stay.

Security Advice

Good travel planning requires information on security conditions in the country of destination. Your security is our priority. In general, the most sub saharan countries are secure and peaceful, however, it is possible in some region and cities, as in all countries to witness acts of insecurity and it’s necessary to take precautions. We have developed some safety guidelines.

  • Find a trustworthy driver. Ask at the hotel or a travel agent where you are staying. When you find one book him for the duration of your stay.
  • Avoid unfamiliar neighborhoods after nightfall.
  • In case of loss of documents contact the nearest police station and make a statement of loss and immediately stop your credit card(s).
  • Preferably leave your personal belongings and documents at your accommodations if possible. A certified copy of your passport will allow you to move easily.
  • Ensure that all emergency numbers are close at hand.
  • In crowded places wear your backpack or handbag close to your body.
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