rwanda dancer

What do I need to know about Rwanda?

Basic precautions should be taken, as in all countries, and common sense used. Do not carry excessive jewellery and money or leave them lying around.

Use safe deposit boxes where available; secure travel documents and valuables. Do not walk unescorted at night. If in doubt seek advice from your guide.

Currency

  • Banks and foreign exchange bureaus are available at capital cities.
  • Most hotels and lodges accept Visa and MasterCard.
  • In addition to credit cards, travellers should bring US dollars cash. Small denominations are recommended.
  • US dollars are widely accepted; however older or high denomination notes may not be accepted.

Travel Insurance

It is essential that adequate travel insurance be taken out prior to departure. This should cover any medical situation such as hospitalisation, as well as cancellation, curtailment of arrangements and baggage. When you travel with &Beyond, you are automatically covered by our emergency evacuation insurance. This guarantees emergency evacuation to the nearest hospital should you suffer either severe illness or injury. This does not cover the cost of treatment once in hospital and in no way replaces your normal travel insurance. There are certain medical exclusions. Please advise us of any existing conditions in advance in order to arrange cover, subject to our insurer’s approval. Please contact us for further details.

Safety

It is advisable to check with your guide – they will know if there are any potentially unsafe areas you should avoid.

Avoid deserted areas, particularly at night. Dress-down (i.e. don’t wear excessive jewellery) when exploring the city. Concealed travel wallets are recommended.

Rwandans are a very warm and hospitable nation – please do not hesitate in asking for assistance at any time.

Avoid taking pictures of anything connected with the government or the military, including army barracks, land or people close to the army barracks, government offices, post offices, banks, ports, train stations and airports.

Health

Please consult your physician before you travel to Africa for advice on precautions against malaria.

Uganda and Rwanda fall into the yellow fever region of Africa. It is imperative that you obtain a Yellow Fever vaccination no less than 10 days prior to travel. Your country of origin and other African countries may deny re-entry without the vaccination, after having visited a country with Yellow Fever.

Anyone who has any special medication should take enough supplies to last the visit

Gratuity Guidelines

It is customary to tip 10% of the bill at all restaurants and 10% of the fare to taxi drivers. It is also the custom to tip local guides and drivers.

Ranger/Guide – $10 per couple per day

Tracker – $10 per couple per day

Butler – $10 per couple per day

Camp/Lodge Staff – $10 per couple per day

Photography

Please be sure to bring sufficient memory cards and batteries as these are not readily available in Uganda and Rwanda. Please ask permission before taking a photograph of any resident.

Please be advised that the use of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (Drones) is not allowed in any of the conservation areas we manage until such time as their impact on wildlife and anti-poaching initiatives can be assessed. This rule will apply throughout Africa, as our partners in various countries and regions have adopted a similar stance.

Passport & Visa Requirements

Passports are required by all foreign visitors and must be valid for 6 months after the intended length of stay. Please ensure that you have at least 2 consecutive blank visa pages (not endorsement pages) in your passport. Our recommendation is 3 or even 4 blank pages if you are travelling through more than one country. If there is insufficient space in the passport then entry could be denied.

It is imperative to check visa requirements with the Ugandan and Rwandan embassies as it may vary according to your nationality.

Where visas can be obtained at port of entry, fees are payable in USD cash only and we recommend small dominations as officials are not in the position to give change.

It is recommended that travellers obtain their visas prior to arrival, as there is a likelihood of long queues at all airports.

What the Experts Say

Rwandans and Ugandans appreciate those who dress modestly.

Cotton clothing is the most comfortable during the day. Please take note of specific packing guidelines for gorilla trekking.

Only a limited number of permits are available in each gorilla park. It is therefore essential to book well in advance