Kigali International Airport is serviced daily by a number of International airlines, including SN Brussels, KLM, South African Airways, Qatar Airlines, Rwandair, Kenya Airways, Turkish Airlines and Ethiopian Airlines. Rwanda can also be reached by land from Kenya, Uganda, Burundi, DR Congo and Tanzania. www.rwandair.com
Passport and Visas
INFORMATION FOR VISA APPLICANTS
Class T2 Tourist
Click here for application form
A person who is NOT a citizen of Hong Kong, Philippines, Mauritius, Singapore and Democratic Republic of Congo visiting for holiday, sightseeing, social or recreational purpose or other short term non work purpose.
An applicant who is a citizen of any of the countries listed above applies for a visa Class T1 Tourist.
All persons must apply in their own right.
Where applications can be made:
At the Directorate General of Immigration and Emigration or at Rwandan Embassy or Diplomatic Mission.
Any genuine acceptable travel document valid not less than 6 months.
30,000 Frw in Rwanda
50 USD or equivalent accepted foreign currency in Rwandan foreign Diplomatic Mission.
Validity period of visa:
Single or Multiple entry:
Work or No Work:
Work is prohibited
Change of Status:
- T2 holder may change his/her status
A class T2 visa can be extended for a further 90 days at the Directorate General of Immigration and Emigration offices.
An initial visa issued by a Rwandan Diplomatic Mission will be valid for 90 days.
Applications should be made whilst the current visa remains valid.
*One clear colored passport size photo with white background, recently taken without glasses, caps and scurf; (the photo should be attached to the application form by use of glue stick. Stapling and clipping the photo to the application form is not advisable).
*A complete filled application form : click here to download application form
*An application letter addressed to the Director General of Immigration and Emigration.
To avoid penalties, the applicant should apply/renew visa in time before expiration of current visa. Penalty fee is 20,000 Frw in a period of 06 to 15 days of the delay.Article 34 of the Ministerial Order establishing procedures and regulations categorizes other penalties from 16 days to 9 months and above.
A single visa costing USD 100 is enough to visit Rwanda, Uganda and Kenya and can be obtained from any immigration office in these 3 countries or from Rwanda immigration. See Visa Requirements
The unit of currency is the Rwanda franc. The US dollar is the hard currency of preference. It may be impossible to exchange travellers' cheques away from the capital. Credit cards are usually only accepted at the major hotels inKigali.
In addition to the indigenous language of Kinyarwanda, French and English are official languages. French is widely spoken throughout the country. In the capital and other tourist centres, many people speak English.
Good Friday and Easter Monday, which fall on variable dates, are recognised in Rwanda. Other public holidays are :
January 1 (New Year's Day); February 1(National Heroes Day); April 7 (Genocide Memorial Day); May 1 (Labour Day); July 4 (National Liberation Day); August 15 (Assumption Day); October 1 (Patriotism Day); December 25 (Christmas Day).
When to Visit
Rwanda can be visited throughout the year. Gorilla trekking and other forest walks are less demanding during the drier months. The European winter is the best time for birds, as Palaearctic migrants supplement resident species.
What to Wear
Dress codes are informal. Daytime temperatures are generally warm, so bring lots of light clothing, supplemented by light sweaters for the cool evenings and heavier clothing for the Parc des Volcans and Nyungwe. When tracking gorillas, wear sturdier clothing to protect against stinging nettles, and solid walking shoes. A hat and sunglasses provide protection against the sun, and a waterproof jacket may come in handy in the moist mountains.
What to Bring
Binoculars will greatly enhance game drives and forest walks. Bring a camera too. Toiletries and other essentials can be bought in the cities.
Rwanda has an excellent cell phone network covering almost the entire country. International phone calls can be made easily. Appropriate SIM cards for the network are readily available everywhere, even in remote towns, and cell phones can be purchased or rented from major shops in Kigali. Most towns of any size will have several Internet cafes and computer centres.
Rwanda has possibly the best roads in East Africa. Most visitors who have booked through a tour company will be provided with good private vehicles, usually 4-wheel drive. All of the major centres are connected with local and luxury bus services. Air charter services are available anywhere in the country.
Hiking and Biking
The fine road network, with little traffic, offers wonderful opportunities for long bicycle trips across the verdant hills and valleys. Mountain biking and hiking can be enjoyed on the thousands of kilometres of fine rural trails linking remote villages, criss-crossing the entire country.
Gorilla Permits can be arranged by Gerry Tours & Safaris, or can be purchased directly through the office of Rwanda Development Board (RDB) at their headquarters in Kigali.
Safety and Health
A certificate of yellow-fever vaccination is required. Much of Rwanda lies at too high an elevation for malaria to be a major concern, but the disease is present and prophylactic drugs are strongly recommended. It is advisable not to drink tap water. Bottled mineral water can be bought in all towns. Hospitals are located in all major towns.
Seasons and Climate
A combination of tropical location and high altitude ensures that most of Rwanda has a temperate year-round climate. Temperatures rarely stray above 30 degrees Celsius by day or below 15 degrees Celsius at night throughout the year. The exceptions are the chilly upper slopes of the Virunga Mountains, and the hot low-lying Tanzania border area protected in Akagera National Park. Throughout the country, seasonal variations in temperature are relatively insignificant. Most parts of the country receive in excess of 1,000mm of precipitation annually, with the driest months being July to September and the wettest February to May. See today's weather here
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