Overland Ivory Coast Travel
Currency to display:
- 1 Visiting Ivory Coast
- 2 Entering Ivory Coast with a Car or Motorbike
- 3 Driving in Ivory Coast
- 4 Gas price in Ivory Coast and Diesel price in Ivory Coast
- 5 Safety and Security Considerations
- 6 Camping in Ivory Coast
- 7 Navigation
- 8 Special Overland Travel interests
- 9 Vehicle Maintenance
- 10 Buy or sell a car or motorbike in Ivory Coast
- 11 References
- 12 Helpful External links
Visiting Ivory Coast
Ivory Coast is a spectacular country with a lot to offer. The beaches are second in the world to none.
Entering Ivory Coast with a Car or Motorbike
Correct as of: March 2017
Travel Visa for Ivory Coast
Generally the Ivorian visa is obtained via www.snedai.ci - go online, follow the instructions for a visa at the embassy that is near you and make an appointment. The visa is biometric normally. The visa is 60€ or local equivalent, multiple entry and valid for 90 days.
Alternatively get a Visa Touristique d'Entente which will cover Cote d'Ivoire too
The Embassy in Bamako Mali will issue the visa, though they ask for a signed letter from the hotel you are staying at and a few other strange things. Expect to pay CFA60,000.00 XOF for one month single entry, CFA90,000.00 XOF for two months and progressively getting higher the more you ask for. The Embassy in Cornaky (Guinea) will issue the visa (wear shoes at the embassy). They will ask for a hotel reservation and a motivation letter why you want to visit Ivory Coast (there is a small office in the first street right hand out of the embassy who can make this for a few euro’s. Additional copy of pasport, copy of visa Guinea, copy health vaccinations. Official it takes 72hours but we got it in 5 hours.
- 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 Douanes to get a temporary import for the vehicle. Using the vehicle registration the officer will write out a 'Vignette Touristique' (Passavant), valid for two months.
- If you are at a small border, they might only issue a hand-written 'Vignette Touristique' (Passavant), you have to go to a major city to get a computerized version.
- If you have a Carnet de Passage, you don't need the Passavant.
Cost of entry
It is FREE to take a vehicle into the country, expect to be asked to pay for the 'Vignette Touristique' (all vehicles will probably be asked whether or not they have a Carnet) up to CFA50,000.00 XOF
When given hassle to pay, threaten to call (or do call/text) this number for the ANTI-CORRUPTION TEAM in Cocody, Abidjan: +225 01 01 36 45 (keep the first 0 in the number!)
Permitted length of stay
Up to two months
Extension of stay
Need to leave the country after two months, there aren't any extensions to the Vignette Touristique
Storing a vehicle and temporarily leaving the country
If you can find somewhere safe to lock up and leave your vehicle then leaving it in Cote d'Ivoire is entirely possible provided that the Vignette Touristique will still be valid on your return. This includes exiting the country via the International Aiport at Abidjan
Exiting with a vehicle
- Hand in your Vignette Touristique to Douanes.
- Get yourself stamped out at immigration.
All should be free, do not pay for this.
Driving in Ivory Coast
Recommended books for Overlanding in Ivory Coast
Travel insurance for Ivory Coast
Vehicle insurance requirements
Liability insurance is required, police might ask 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
In most towns you will find an insurance company, ask for 'agence d'assurance'
Anything from your home country will be accepted.
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.
General Road quality
Main highways are good pavement, without potholes, especially those recently built. The freeway from Abidjan to Yamoussoukro might be the best road in West Africa, you can easily travel at 130km/h
Minor dirt roads are frequently horrible, especially in towns. Lots are impassable in the rainy season.
Always watch out for potholes on sealed roads - they can be HUGE, and hitting them fast will be very, very bad.
Distances to the next major town are usually shown on the side of highways, and big intersections sometimes have signs.
The freeway from Abidjan to Yamoussoukro is an expensive toll road - you pay CFA1,250.00 XOF 2 or 3 times to drive the length. Other highways have sporadic tools for CFA500.00 XOF One of the three bridges across the lagoon in Abidjan is a toll bridge. For normal vehicles it costs CFA500.00 XOF to cross either way. Be prepared with small change as they do not accept CFA bills larger than 2000 CFA. Be prepared to have exact change to pay for all peage (toll booths) as there is a shortage of small coins and bills in the country and they often don't have change.
Bribery in Ivory Coast
Bribery is common, so keep your wits about you. Be polite, and don’t pay. See the bribery tips page for general advice.
There are many checkpoints and random stops where Police will check all your paperwork. Don't pay.
Traveling with pets
List the entry requirements and anything else required to travel with a pet.
Gas price in Ivory Coast and Diesel price in Ivory Coast
Last updated: September 2018
Currency and unit to display:
|Unleaded (called Essence||CFA620.00 XOF per Liter|
|Diesel (called Gasoil)||CFA610.00 XOF per Liter|
Gas and Diesel Availability / Frequency
All towns have stations, all stations always have gasoline and diesel. Both are also available in small containers on the side of the road. Quality is likely very bad when bought like that.
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 armed ambushes, hazards on the road, vehicles without lights and extremely bad roads.
Vehicles are safe enough on the street during the day, secure overnight parking is recommended elsewhere, particularly the larger towns.
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 Ivory Coast - Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
Camping in Ivory Coast
There are a few campsites in Ivory Coast, and a few hotels allow camping.
Expect to pay between CFA2,000.00 XOF and CFA5,000.00 XOF per person per night.
Wildcamping is possible in Ivory Coast, 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. If you do camp in a town, ask the Chief of the village for permission first (he will always say yes).
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 outside of Abidjan. In Abidjan it should be no problem.
Reise Know-How are amoung the best paper maps. Purchase paper maps before arriving in Ivory Coast
GPS Maps of Ivory Coast
- 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 Ivory Coast
- 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.
Link to sites that have a list of GPS co-ordinates (or directions) for camping locations (including "wild" campsites), propane filling, gas stations, repair shops, places of interest, etc.
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 Ivory Coast
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.