Overland Guinea-Bissau Travel
Currency to display:
- 1 Visiting Guinea-Bissau
- 2 Entering Guinea-Bissau with a Car or Motorbike
- 3 Driving in Guinea-Bissau
- 4 Gas price in Guinea-Bissau and Diesel price in Guinea-Bissau
- 5 Safety and Security Considerations
- 6 Camping in Guinea-Bissau
- 7 Navigation
- 8 Special Overland Travel interests
- 9 Vehicle Maintenance
- 10 Buy or sell a car or motorbike in Guinea-Bissau
- 11 References
- 12 Helpful External links
Guinea-Bissau is a small and often overlooked country in West Africa. The official language is Portuguese, though many people speak English and French. People are extremely friendly, and the jungle in the East is spectacular.
Entering Guinea-Bissau with a Car or Motorbike
Correct as of: August 2016
Travel Visa for Guinea-Bissau
The visa for Guinea-Bissau is extremely easy to obtain at virtually any bordering country.
The Embassy in Ziguinchor Senegal is very friendly, and the process is very easy. The visa is issued immediately. Expect to pay CFA20,000.00 XOF for one month double entry.
- Passport of registered owner.
- Drivers license of registered owner.
- Original vehicle registration.
- Proof of vehicle insurance - they might not ask for it, but it’s better to have it.
- (OPTIONAL) Carnet de Passage
(no copies are required)
Process at border
- 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 2 weeks.
- If you have a Carnet de Passage, you don't need the Passavant.
Cost of entry
CFA2,500.00 XOF for the Passavant, should be free if you have a Carnet de Passage
Permitted length of stay
Passavant is good for 2 weeks.
Extension of stay
Unsure, Customs said it can be done in Bissau.
Storing a vehicle and temporarily leaving the country
Exiting with a vehicle
- Hand in your Passavant to Duane.
- Get yourself stamped out at immigration.
All should be free, do not pay for this.
Driving in Guinea-Bissau
Recommended books for Overlanding in Guinea-Bissau
Travel insurance for Guinea-Bissau
Vehicle insurance requirements
Liability Insurance is required, and the corrupt police will ask repeatedly to see it.
If you travel through more west African countries get a 'Carte Brun' which is valid in most west African countries at no extra cost.
Cost of vehicle insurance
Expect to pay CFA10,000.00 XOF to CFA20,000.00 XOF per vehicle per month, depending on engine size and vehicle age (newer costs more)
Where to purchase vehicle insurance
Unknown in Bissau.
Driving side of road
RHD vehicles are allowed but ensure you have correct paperwork, because it’s a good chance for bribery.
Mandatory items in vehicle
You need two safety triangles, first aid kit, and fire extinguisher. They even checked the expiry date and amount of gas on the gauge.
General Road quality
The main highways are excellent pavement, without potholes.
In Bissau the roads are horrible.
Minor dirt roads can be horrible, and even impassable in the rainy season.
Not overly common.
There are toll booths on the main highways every 100km or so that cost <price="500" currency="XOF" /> each time. There are maybe 3 or 4 on the whole length of the country.
Bribery in Guinea-Bissau
Bribery is extremely common, with every police stop and checkpoint an attempt to get money out of you. Be polite, and don’t pay. See the bribery tips page for general advice.
There are checkpoints and random stops where Police will check all your paperwork.
Traveling with pets
Gas price in Guinea-Bissau and Diesel price in Guinea-Bissau
Last updated: August 2016
Currency and unit to display:
|Unleaded (called Gasolina)||CFA594.00 XOF per Liter|
|Diesel (called Gasóleo)||CFA603.00 XOF per Liter|
Gas and Diesel Availability / Frequency
All towns have stations, all stations always have gasoline and diesel.
Make sure you understand the difference between Gasolina and Gasóleo!
Gas and Diesel Quality
Seemed to be no problem with quality.
Safety and Security Considerations
Driving at night
Driving at night is not recommended due to hazards on the road, vehicles without lights and bad roads.
Vehicles seem safe enough on the street during the day, secure overnight parking is recommended in the cities, especially Bissau.
Special driving considerations
As in all of West Africa, expect hazards on the road around every turn - animals, children, pot holes and speed bumps!
Security advisories and information
- Country Specific Information - U.S. Department of State
- Travel Reports and Warnings - Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada
- Travel advice by country - Foreign and Commonwealth office (U.K.)
- Travel Advice for Guinea-Bissau - Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
Camping in Guinea-Bissau
There are a few campsites in Guinea-Bissau, and a few hotles that allow camping.
Expect to pay between CFA2,000.00 XOF and CFA5,000.00 XOF per person per night.
Wildcamping is possible in Guinea-Bissau, especially in rural areas. Try to camp away from villages unless you don't mind lot of attention and lot of demand for ‘Cadeaux’ which means gift.
Camping guide books
List and link to books specifically for camping.
Drinking water is generally not considered safe to drink for visitors who are not used to it.
Reise Know-How are amoung the best paper maps. Purchase paper maps before arriving in Guinea-Bissau
GPS Maps of Guinea-Bissau
- 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 co-ordinates for camping, propane, gas, repairs, etc. in Guinea-Bissau
- 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
List any special items / places that are popular with Overlanders
4x4s / Trucks
- Toyota Global Dealer Locator
- Land Rover International Dealer Locator
- Mercedes Benz International (select country on bottom right)
- Jeep International site locator
Add known good mechanics here.
Buy or sell a car or motorbike in Guinea-Bissau
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.
Add any helpful external links here.