Ethiopia

Map of Ethiopia

Plugs and Electric in Ethiopia

Electricity

Voltage

220 V

Frequency

50 Hz

Plug

Round pins with grounding pin, either offset or inline

Flights from the UK to Ethiopia

International flights arrive at Bole Airport in Addis Ababa.

British Midland flights from United Kingdom to Ethiopia

www.flybmi.com

British Midland fly from London Heathrow to Addis Ababa most days, one stop enroute, flight time approximately 10 hours 15 minutes.

Ethiopian Airlines flights from United Kingdom to Ethiopia

www.flyethiopian.com

Ethiopian Airlines fly most days from London Heathrow direct to Addis Ababa, flight time 8 hours 30 minutes.

Egyptair flights from United Kingdom to Ethiopia

www.egyptair.com

Egyptair fly from London Heathrow to Addis Ababa 5 days a week, changing plane in Cairo, average flight time approx 10 hours 30 minutes.

Flights in Ethiopia

Flying is one of the best ways to cover the long distances in Ethiopia.  Domestic flights cover an extensive network throughout the country and are provided by the national carrier, Ethiopian Airlines.  Smaller companies such as Abyssinian Flight Services offer charter flights on smaller aircraft to 80 destinations within the country.

Ethiopian Airlines flights in Ethiopia

www.flyethiopian.com

Ethiopian Airlines provide numerous flights throughout the country.

Ethiopia Culture and Traditions

Ethiopians are generally modest dressers and visitors should be sensitive about going underdressed into places of worship. Avoid wearing shorts, sleeveless tops and going bare backed into places of worship. Shoes must always be removed before entering churches and mosques – so a pair of socks is useful.

Beggars and begging is a problem in Ethiopia following the recent history of civil wars, famines, droughts and population displacement, along with general poverty and under development. Avoid giving out pens, clothes and sweets to children – it is better to provide support in other ways such as donating to organisations which support local schools or clinics.

Weather in Ethiopia

There are two seasons: the dry season prevails from October through May; the wet season runs from June to the end of September, with short rains in March.

Because of Ethiopia’s elevation temperatures rarely exceed 25 degrees C. in most of the country, although in lower lying areas such as Awash, Omo and Mago National Parks, it can get considerably hotter.

Seasonality

The best season to visit depends on where you are planning to visit.  In the Omo and Mago National Parks of Southern Ethiopia the main rains are from March to June with shorter rains in November.

With the upgrading of airports along the Historic Route – Axum, Bahar Dar, Lalibela and Gondar – the north can be visited even in the rainy season (thus a quieter time of year with less travellers). Travel during the rainy season has certain rewards such as a green countryside full of crops and flowers with sites largely to yourselves.

Travel during the time of Ethiopian festivals is extremely busy with hotels overflowing and demand at its peak with Ethiopia’s limited infrastructure at full stretch.  If you specifically want to travel during festival periods you’ll have to put up with the downsides, if you don’t – pick another time of year to visit!

Money Advice for Ethiopia

Local Currency

Ethiopian Birr (ETB)

General Advice

The Birr comes in 100, 50, 10, 5 and 1 notes.  Coins come in 50, 25, 10, 5 and 1 denominations.

Money Exchange

US Dollars and UK Sterling can be exchanged in banks in Addis Ababa.

ATM Availability

There are very few ATM machines in Addis Ababa and these should not be relied on.  For more information check the Visa ATM locator, the MasterCard ATM locator or the American Express ATM locator for the addresses of ATMs around the world.

Credit Cards

Credit cards are not widely accepted and should not be relied on.

Other Information

The US Dollar is the most widely accepted foreign currency in Ethiopia.

Entry Requirements for Ethiopia

Entry Warning

The documentation and fee required for obtaining visas varies according to both your nationality and where you are applying from. It is the sole right of each country to determine who is allowed to enter.

Passport

All passports must be valid for six months and have two clear pages free.

Taxes

Some countries may charge an arrival or departure tax which may or may not be included in the price of an airline ticket, or may need to be paid in cash on arrival or departure.

Visa Requirements

Travelling from Requirements
Australia Visas can be obtained on arrival you must take two passport size photos and a minimum of USD 100 for processing the visa on arrival. It is recommended to obtain a visa before you travel, all passports must be valid for six months, you will need an application form, one passport size photograph and your passport to apply.
Belgium Visas can be obtained on arrival you must take two passport size photos and a minimum of USD 100 for processing the visa on arrival. It is recommended to obtain a visa before you travel, all passports must be valid for six months, you will need an application form, one passport size photograph and your passport to apply.
Canada Visas can be obtained on arrival you must take two passport size photos and a minimum of USD 100 for processing the visa on arrival. It is recommended to obtain a visa before you travel, all passports must be valid for six months, you will need an application form, one passport size photograph and your passport to apply.
Ireland Visas can be obtained on arrival you must take two passport size photos and a minimum of USD 100 for processing the visa on arrival. It is recommended to obtain a visa before you travel, all passports must be valid for six months, you will need an application form, one passport size photograph and your passport to apply.
Netherlands Visas can be obtained on arrival you must take two passport size photos and a minimum of USD 100 for processing the visa on arrival. It is recommended to obtain a visa before you travel, all passports must be valid for six months, you will need an application form, one passport size photograph and your passport to apply.
New Zealand Visas can be obtained on arrival you must take two passport size photos and a minimum of USD 100 for processing the visa on arrival. It is recommended to obtain a visa before you travel, all passports must be valid for six months, you will need an application form, one passport size photograph and your passport to apply.
South Africa Visas can be obtained on arrival you must take two passport size photos and a minimum of USD 100 for processing the visa on arrival. It is recommended to obtain a visa before you travel, all passports must be valid for six months, you will need an application form, one passport size photograph and your passport to apply.
United States Visas can be obtained on arrival you must take two passport size photos and a minimum of USD 100 for processing the visa on arrival. It is recommended to obtain a visa before you travel, all passports must be valid for six months, you will need an application form, one passport size photograph and your passport to apply.
United Kingdom Visas can be obtained on arrival you must take two passport size photos and a minimum of USD 100 for processing the visa on arrival. It is recommended to obtain a visa before you travel, all passports must be valid for six months, you will need an application form, one passport size photograph and your passport to apply. The visa fee is £18.00 multiple entry valid for 3 months from date of issue/£24.00 6 months multiple entry.

Other Nationalities

Other nationalities should either contact Travcour UK (see below) or their nearest embassy for up-to-date information prior to departure.

Passport & Visa Service

For assistance with obtaining passports and visas UK-based ‘Travcour’ have been offering travellers a comprehensive and reliable travel document service since 1985. www.travour.com

Transport in Ethiopia

Buses

Bus services operate throughout the country, these are run by both the government and private companies.  Journeys are often slow as there is often a need to travel in convoy  in some areas.

Taxis

In Addis Ababa, there are Luxury Mercedes Benz taxis operated by National Tour Operation (NTO). They are stationed outside major hotels and at the airport. They do not have metres.  Yellow taxis are stationed at the airport and always negotiate with the driver for the fare before travel.

Taxis are available in other cities and major towns. These include the blue-and-white mini buses, pickups with a closed Canopy or Saloon Cars. They normally operate on a fixed rate and standard route. Personalized and specific trips should be negotiated with the driver in advance.

Car Hire

Vehicles can be hired in Addis Ababa however unless you are experienced in driving in Africa it is not recommended.

Driving

Driving is on the right hand side. There are some 4,100 kilometres of asphalt roads with a further 19,000 kilometres of gravel and dry-weather roads. 4WD vehicles are recommended for non-graded roads.  Driving should be avoided after dark.

Trains

A 778 kilometre-long railway line links Addis Ababa with Djibouti, and carries both freight and passengers.

Translator

Africa Travel Information