Overland Congo Travel

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West Africa > Congo Currency to display:

Visiting Congo[edit]

The Republic of Congo is a beautiful country that is more developed than most people assume. Pointe Noire and Brazzaville are bustling, modern cities. The jungle to the north offers amazing wildlife viewing opportunities.

Entering Congo with a Car or Motorbike[edit]

Correct as of: April 2017

Travel Visa for Congo[edit]

The travel visa for Rep. Congo is easy to get, with virtually everyone who travels South getting it in Lomé, Togo. A one months visa costs CFA60,000.00 XOF and will be issued by the friendly embassy staff while you wait.

Coming from the South, get the visa in Windhoek, Namibia for $90.00 USD

Required Paperwork[edit]

(no copies are required)

Process at border[edit]

  • Get yourself stamped in at Immigration.
  • Go to Douane to get a temporary import for the vehicle. Using the vehicle registration the officer will write out a Passavant, valid for one month.
  • If you have a Carnet de Passage, you don't need the Passavant.

Cost of entry[edit]

Entry with a Carnet de Passage is free, the passavant costs CFA10,000.00 XOF

Permitted length of stay[edit]

With a Passavant it is one month.

Extension of stay[edit]


Storing a vehicle and temporarily leaving the country[edit]

Describe if/how a vehicle can be stored, and for how long.
Also mention if the owner / temporary importer can leave the country while the vehicle is in storage.

Exiting with a vehicle[edit]

  • Get yourself stamped out at Immigration.
  • Get your Carnet de Passage stamped out if you have one.

All should be free, do not pay for this.

Driving in Congo[edit]

Recommended books for Overlanding in Congo[edit]

Overland Travel Essentials: West Africa: Myths, Miscon...
Overland Travel Essentials: West Africa: Myths, Miscon...
by Dan Grec
From $click on Amazon
Lonely Planet Swahili Phrasebook & Dictionary
Lonely Planet Swahili Phrasebook & Dictionary
by Lonely Planet
From $3.78 on Amazon
Work Less To Live Your Dreams: A Practical Guide To Sa...
Work Less To Live Your Dreams: A Practical Guide To Sa...
by Dan Grec
From $click on Amazon
Overlanders' Handbook: Worldwide Route And Planning Gu...
Overlanders' Handbook: Worldwide Route And Planning Gu...
by Chris Scott
From $22.49 on Amazon
Adventure Motorcycling Handbook: A Route & Planning Gu...
Adventure Motorcycling Handbook: A Route & Planning Gu...
by Chris Scott
From $click on Amazon
Footprint Backpacker Peru Bolivia & Ecuador (footprint...
Footprint Backpacker Peru Bolivia & Ecuador (footprint...
by Alan Murphy, Geoffrey Groesbeck
From $6.95 on Amazon

Travel insurance for Congo[edit]

World Nomads offer the most flexible Travel Insurance at the best prices for multi-country / multi-year trips. You can buy, extend and claim online, even after you've left home.

Vehicle insurance requirements[edit]

Insurance does not seem to be required, Police never seem to ask for it for people just transiting through, though you might want to have something to show anyone looking for a bribe.

Cost of vehicle insurance[edit]


Where to purchase vehicle insurance[edit]

Unknown within Congo

Driving license[edit]

Anything from your home country will be accepted.

Driving side of road[edit]

RHD vehicles are allowed without problem.

Mandatory items in vehicle[edit]

You probably need two safety triangles, first aid kit, and fire extinguisher.


General Road quality[edit]

Congo has a mix of excellent tarmac and horribly potholed roads. The North/South highway is excellent pavement for the entire length of the country. The major new freeway from Brazzaville to Pointe Noire is excellent 4 lane highway the entire way. Dirt roads are often pot holed and muddy.

Road signs[edit]

Limited road signs, some do exist but not always obvious. Those that do exist are not always good quality.

Toll roads[edit]

The new freeway in Congo has toll booths, though they were not open at the time of my visit.

Bribery in Congo[edit]

Bribery is common, you should expect officers at checkpoints to either directly ask for money or a gift. Maybe they will invent a story about why you must pay. Be polite, and don’t pay

See the bribery tips page for general advice.


There are many checkpoints and random stops where Police, Military and Customs will check all your paperwork. Don't pay. Stay friendly and polite. Never use your mobile phone or camera at check points.

Traveling with pets[edit]

List the entry requirements and anything else required to travel with a pet.

Gas price in Congo and Diesel price in Congo[edit]

Last updated: April 2017

Currency and unit to display:

Gasoline Grade Price
Unleaded FCFA595.00 XAF per Liter
Diesel FCFA475.00 XAF per Liter

Gas and Diesel Availability / Frequency[edit]

All towns have stations, though Congo is famous for shortages. There is only one refinery that is sometimes turned off, leading to massive shortages, especially in Brazzaville.
Fill up whenever possible.

Gas and Diesel Quality[edit]

Likely not good - both have dirt and/or water, diesel is likely extremely high sulphur content.

Safety and Security Considerations[edit]

Driving at night[edit]

Driving at night is not recommended out of towns and cities due to poor lighting, poor road conditions and increased police checks after 6pm in the evening. There can also be armed robbery on the roads in remote places and some even place bogus road blocks. Also watch out for cars without lights, animals, people and everything else you can imagine on the roads.

Vehicle parking[edit]

Vehicles can be parked on the streets and usually are safe. At night try to park in compounds or other known safe zones

Special driving considerations[edit]

Road blocks for police which can be twigs or trees also used for vehicles that are broken down. Drivers don't always drive smoothly and can pull out it is usual to horn before and whilst overtaking. Likewise when approaching a junction to alert people of your present. Pedestrians jaywalk so again use the horn and drive with care. Animals such as cows and goats can be in the road. Watch for people and children. People tend to dress in dark clothing and lighting may be poor so watch out at night.

Security advisories and information[edit]

Camping in Congo[edit]

Camping is not common in Congo, though it can be done in the right places.
Wildcamping is possible, though it's difficult to get away from people. See places in iOverlander for the few that exist.

Camping guide books[edit]

List and link to books specifically for camping.

Drinking water[edit]

It's not recommended to drink tap water - filter it or buy bottles.


Paper maps[edit]

Reise Know-How are among the best paper maps. Purchase paper maps before arriving in Congo

Congo Brazzaville & Democratic Republic Of Congo 1:2,0...
Congo Brazzaville & Democratic Republic Of Congo 1:2,0...
by Reise Knowhow
From $12.95 on Amazon
by David Greenhood
From $5.09 on Amazon
Congo & Central Afican Republic 1:2 000 000 Itmb (inte...
Congo & Central Afican Republic 1:2 000 000 Itmb (inte...
by ITMB Canada
From $10.36 on Amazon
Lonely Planet French Phrasebook & Dictionary
Lonely Planet French Phrasebook & Dictionary
by Lonely Planet, Michael Janes, Jean-Bernard Carille...
From $3.96 on Amazon

GPS Maps of Congo[edit]

  • Garmin Open Street Maps has excellent coverage of all roads - highways and cities.
  • Tracks4Africa is an SD Card for Garmin GPS, and contain Routable turn-by-turn maps with 809,000 kms of roads and over 129,000 points of interest.
Gps Map Of Africa
Gps Map Of Africa
From $click on Amazon

GPS co-ordinates for camping, propane, gas, repairs, etc. in Congo[edit]

  • iOverlander is a website and iPhone application designed by Overlanders, for Overlanders. It contains GPS co-ordinates and reviews for camping, hotels, propane, water, mechanics, borders and much more.

Special Overland Travel interests[edit]

  • There are quite a few great spots listed in iOverlander - check there.
  • Hippocampe in Brazzaville is a long-time famous Overlander hangout on the West Coast.

Vehicle Maintenance[edit]


4x4s / Trucks


Local Garages[edit]

Add known good mechanics here.

Buy or sell a car or motorbike in Congo[edit]

Describe how a foreigner can buy a vehicle. List any difficulties or limitations on where the vehicle can be driven.

Describe how a foreigner can sell a foreign-plated vehicle, or list not possible.'


Links to the source of any information - blogs or discussion forums, etc.

Helpful External links[edit]

Add any helpful external links here.