Somalia Basics

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The Basics


Time: Local time is GMT +3.
Money: Local time is GMT +3.

Note: These rates are not updated daily and should be used as a guideline only.

Language: The official languages of Somalia are Somali and Arabic, but many other languages are spoken.

Entry requirements for Americans: A passport valid for six months and visa are required. Visas can be acquired on arrival for a maximum stay of 30 days.

Entry requirements for UK nationals: A passport valid for six months and visa are required. Visas can be acquired on arrival for a maximum stay of 30 days.

Entry requirements for Canadians: A passport valid for six months and visa are required. Visas can be acquired on arrival for a maximum stay of 30 days.

Entry requirements for Australians: A passport valid for six months and visa are required. Visas can be acquired on arrival for a maximum stay of 30 days.

Entry requirements for South Africans: A passport valid for six months and visa are required. Visas can be acquired on arrival for a maximum stay of 30 days.

Entry requirements for New Zealanders: A passport valid for six months and visa are required. Visas can be acquired on arrival for a maximum stay of 30 days.

Entry requirements for Irish nationals: A passport valid for six months and visa are required. Visas can be acquired on arrival for a maximum stay of 30 days.

Passport/Visa Note: Upon arrival all visitors over 18 years of age must exchange USD 100 or equivalent of other freely convertible foreign currencies into local currency. Some nationalities can obtain visas on arrival for a maximum stay of 30 days, at Bosaso Airport, Abdullahi Yusuf Airport, and Aden Adde Airport, but to qualify an invitation letter issued by a local sponsor has to be submitted to the Airport Immigration Department at least two days before arrival. It is highly recommended that passports have at least six months validity remaining after your intended date of departure from your travel destination. Immigration officials often apply different rules to those stated by travel agents and official sources.

Travel Health: Hepatitis A, hepatitis B, typhoid, and meningococcus vaccinations are recommended for all travellers and malaria medication is recommended for travel to all regions. A yellow fever vaccination is recommended for some parts of the country and is required for those arriving from countries with a risk of yellow fever transmission. Travellers should also be up to date on vaccinations for MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) and tetanus-diphtheria. Medical facilities are extremely limited and most doctors and hospitals will expect immediate cash payment regardless of medical insurance policies. Serious illness or injury is likely to require evacuation out of the country for treatment.

Local Customs: Somalia practises very strict and conservative Islamic cultural traditions. Avoid religious debates and respect Islamic traditions such as the call to prayer and fasting during Ramadan. Alcohol is prohibited in Somalia. Always dress conservatively, men should wear long pants, and women should keep their arms and legs covered. Homosexuality is illegal and penalties can be extreme. In greeting, only members of the same clan exchange handshakes or kisses.