What to wear in Ethiopia. However, petty theft and confidence tricks are problematic. Public buses are a popular way to get around, but try to avoid travelling at night. Muggings, armed assaults and theft from parked cars happen. hostels are an affordable and great way to meet other like-minded travellers. Is the tap water safe to drink in Ethiopia? , but there are many insurance providers to choose from, so make sure to shop around to find the best deal. Shared taxis follow a fixed route, and stop and pick people up when signalled, similar to how a bus would operate. For general purposes such as washing, cleaning, showering, and brushing your teeth, the tap water is safe to use. Decide for yourself what the personal level of risk is to you as an individual and takes steps to reduce it. Review the. There are many expats working in Ethiopia, the pay is quite good, the standard of living is high and it is a relatively safe country. Incidents of civil unrest and ethnic violence may occur without warning. Although tourists were never the target, some foreign-owned businesses were struck and destroyed during the demonstrations. © 2021 Journeying The Globe. Apparently, there have been records of kidnappings in these areas in the past. If how safe is Ethiopia for tourists when it comes to kidnapping, you’re about to find out. So much so that it might be depressing returning to your home country. You will love your time here, but remember to apply common sense during your stay. Many past travellers have expressed how safe they felt when travelling in Ethiopia alone. In some more remote areas, which include the Ogaden desert in the southeast, near the Kenyan border or the Awash-Mille road at night, the so-called shiftas (bandits) often prowl. Some people are very desperate for money and they will try to get it from you by all means. Serious or violent crime is rare; against travelers, it’s extremely rare. Cutlery can hardly be found (even in restaurants), but there are handwashing stations for you to clean your hands before and after eating. Because it’s essential to travel smart, we’re going to share our insider travel tips for Ethiopia. The main problems here are related to the theft of things, attacks, car theft, vandalism, and corruption. There are plenty of family-friendly hotels where you and your children can stay throughout Ethiopia. Healthcare standards are generally lower than in western countries, and we advise taking out healthcare insurance before moving here. When people think of travelling to Ethiopia the question of safety and security always comes up thanks to outdated stereotypes of civil war, poverty and famine. Similar to other countries in East Africa, it is best to dress conservatively in … Perhaps because there’s not many of us ladies backpacking Ethiopia solo. Your message. Enjoy your stay in Ethiopia, but always make sure to get travel insurance! Regardless of your concern, our guide is here to help. Civil unrest and armed conflict have resulted in injuries and deaths around the border between Benishangul Gumuz and the western part of Oromia State. A simple tip for travelers: always look as if you know where you’re going. In fact as long as you take reasonable personal precautions just like you would at home it is a very safe country to travel in by any standards. Most of the vehicles for hire are either 4×4’s or minibuses and expect to pay a large deposit upfront. But As a country in Africa, Ethiopia is generally considered an unsafe destination. However, this is seldom enforced, and many expats still drive without the necessary legal requirements – but do so at your own risk. Of course, Ethiopians want to keep the country safe, as it’s beneficial for the economy and portrays a good image to the public. In 2016, violent anti-government protests in some of the countries regions led to authorities advising against travel to Ethoipia. Just be ready for them, so you’re not disappointed. There are are no significant health risks, and violent crime (outside of borders with tribal conflicts) is mainly non-existent. I never felt in danger while I was there. I’m a digital nomad and I’ve been travelling for the past three years. Ethiopian Airlines, the national airline of Ethiopia, has a good safety record. CNN is not able to independently verify Huyeet's story but all the refugees we spoke to told a similar story. If you wish to remain on travel.state.gov, click the "cancel" message. And you know what? Compared with other African countries, Ethiopia is incredibly safe. Fact Sheet – The U.S. Always agree on a price before entering the vehicle. Look for restaurants with a high volume of people –. There is a threat of kidnapping on the southern border with Kenya and in Ethiopia’s Somali region, particularly in the eastern areas to which the FCDO advise against all travel. Ethiopia is a very safe place for families. Solo travel can become lonely, particularly during the late evenings. Violent crime in Addis Ababa is fortunately rare, particularly where visitors are concerned. In a word: yes. Some areas have increased risk. Nevertheless, just because you can drive doesn’t mean you should. The main risks are petty fraud and theft. Our guide covers a range of topics, from the safety of the roads, to if it’s safe for a solo traveller in Ethiopia – and almost everything in-between. Compared with many African countries, Ethiopia is remarkably safe – most of the time. But whatever you do, don’t e… A simple tip for travellers: always look as if you know where you’re going. Avoid some areas with stray dogs and be careful at night - blackouts are not uncommon. So, as much as it is safe to travel around Ethiopia, you need to realise that sometimes not-so-nice situations may happen - as they can and do happen in any city in the world. Tourists are rarely a target, but it can happen. Their buses are equipt with aircon, spacious seating, seatbelts, and drivers with a reasonable safety record. In Ethiopia, there are two main kinds of taxi services: ‘private taxis’ and ‘shared taxis’. But either way, for solo female wanderers looking to travel Ethiopia alone and wondering if it’s safe, here’s the full personal lowdown based on my own experience. The growth in tourism is rising, and the locals are reaping the benefits of increased business. A large part of Ethiopian culture is the food. There is nowhere like Ethiopia, a magnificent country that boasts a culture rich in history, spectacular wildlife, and also the motherland of where the coffee bean originated. Visit the Embassy's COVID-19 page for more information on COVID-19 in Ethiopia. Preview. Ensure that your children are up to date with any necessary vaccines that you might need before visiting. Ethiopia safety, Is Ethiopia Safe for tourists and travel answered. Are travellers in danger if they go? Monitor local media for breaking events and be prepared to adjust your plans. It’s off the beaten path, but millions of tourists still visit the country every year. Ask a question Recent Conversations. There are plenty of places to eat in Ethiopia; just remember to look for trusted and highly-rated restaurants. Private taxis are for individuals or groups who flag down a cab and are travelling to a custom destination. The cost of living is low. However, Ethiopian cities are safer than many big cities like London, New York, or Los Angeles. Top 10 Safety Tips for Travelling to Ethiopia, Is Albania Safe? With an estimated population of 86 million people, 78% of Ethiopians struggle with an income below … Many expats move to Ethiopia for the beautiful scenery, friendly people, and diverse culture. Ethiopia is a very safe country. Of course, you have to be much more organised which can be challenging, but in regards to safety, it’s very safe. How Safe Is Ethiopia for Tourists? Addis Ababa is generally much safer than other cities in Ethiopia. However, it is important to note that Ethiopia can be harder to travel in than many countries in Africa. Read the entire Travel Advisory. The tap water is not safe to drink anywhere in Ethiopia. (Everything You Need To Know), Koh Tao Vs Koh Samui (Where Is Better To Visit? Read the Department of State’s COVID-19 page before you plan any international travel. 2. Every country has its upside and downside, and Ethiopia is no different. Latest travel advice for Ethiopia, including how to stay safe during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and information on returning to the UK. When compared with other African countries, Ethiopia is actually pretty safe. The food in Ethiopia is safe to eat, but like with anywhere, it is essential to apply some safety precautions: You’re in for a treat in Ethiopia. Crime, armed conflict, and the potential for ethnic conflict exist near the Ethiopian borders with Kenya, Sudan, South Sudan, and Eritrea. Beautiful scenery, tall mountains, incredible history, and diverse culture; Ethiopia is not to be missed. Exercise increased caution in Ethiopia due to civil unrest and communication disruptions. To hire a car in Ethiopia, you will need a local driving license. Outside the capital, the risk of petty crime drops still further. The ancient art of pickpocketing is a constant threat in Ethiopia and is the … While Ethiopia is generally safe for solo adventurers, travelling anywhere alone comes with its own set of dangers. Yes, Ethiopia is reasonably safe to visit. This country is a stunning place, but it comes with its drawbacks. Do Not Travel To: Border area with Somalia due to potential for terrorism, kidnapping, and landmines. U.S. DEPARTMENT of STATE — BUREAU of CONSULAR AFFAIRS, Border area with Somalia due to potential for, Border areas with Kenya, Sudan, South Sudan, and Eritrea due to, Somali Regional State due to potential for, Ethiopia’s Southern Nations, Nationalities, and People’s Region (SNNPR) due to, The East Hararge region and the Guji zone of Oromia State due to, Benishangul Gumuz and the western part of Oromia State due to. when choosing where to eat, look at trusted review websites such as TripAdvisor to see the top-rated restaurants in your area. Civil unrest in the region has resulted in deaths, looting, and the burning of buildings. These restrictions impede the U.S. Embassy’s ability to communicate with, and provide consular services to, U.S. citizens in Ethiopia. All Rights Reserved. But in all, we still have no problem saying that Ethiopia is a safe place to visit. We are covering it all. Addis Ababa Warnings and Dangers. It has the highest risk in the border regions of eastern Ethiopia, Ethiopia’s Somali region and along the border with Eritrea. Violent and serious crime rates are much lower than in neighboring countries and these offences are extremely rarely committed against foreigners. Take our word for it: travel insurance can save you thousands of pounds – so make sure to purchase it before you start your trip. Some cases of the rarer vaccine-derived strain of polio have been found in Ethiopia. Compared to Kenya, South Africa and some other countries in Africa, Ethiopia actually has relatively low crime rates. Links to external websites are provided as a convenience and should not be construed as an endorsement by the U.S. Department of State of the views or products contained therein. All forums . Ethiopia’s Southern Nations, Nationalities, and People’s Region (SNNPR)—Reconsider Travel. (The Ultimate Safety Guide). Stick to drinking bottled water which is reasonably priced and readily available throughout the country. If you add human threats such as pickpockets into the mix, then you can see why safety in Ethiopia may be a concern. However, be wary of drivers trying to overcharge you, especially in large tourist areas such as airports, bus stations, and shopping malls. They lack access to life’s most critical resource – water. Exercise increased caution in Ethiopia due to civil unrest and communication disruptions. Get notified by e-mail when a reply is posted. We have created this guide on staying safe in Ethiopia so that you don’t need to worry. The crime statistics in Ethiopia are relatively low, with petty theft usually being the most significant threat. Civil unrest and armed conflict have resulted in injuries and deaths in parts of Oromia State. Hi, I’m Reece, founder of Journeying The Globe. Selam Bus and Sky Bus are two reputable and luxury bus operators. Serious or violent crime is rare; against travellers it’s extremely rare. Last Update: Reissued with updates to COVID-19 information. As a precaution, U.S. government personnel must request permission for any travel outside of Addis Ababa (personal and official), and are required to carry personnel tracking devices and, in some cases, satellite phones. Border Areas with Kenya, Sudan, South Sudan, and Eritrea—Do Not Travel. Is Koh Tao Safe? I thought Ethiopia was a great place to visit and the people were friendly overall. Outside the capital, the risk of petty crime drops still further. Critical Infrastructure. However, the disease may still come in from nearby countries. Although the severity of these protests has since calmed down, always check recent safety reports published by the British Foreign Office before your travels. Violent crimes rarely occur in many parts of the country. Check your vaccinations are up to date before you travel. Ensure that your personal be… Generally, Ethiopia is safe, especially for an African country. Terrorists maintain a presence in Somali towns near the Ethiopian border, presenting a risk of cross-border attacks and kidnappings. If you do that, along with applying common sense, you will be fine. Have evacuation plans that do not rely on U.S. government assistance. Asides from that, Ethiopia is an entirely safe place to live. As of March 2019, the Aviation Safety Network records 64 accidents/incidents for Ethiopian Airlines that total 459 fatalities since 1965, plus six accidents for Ethiopian Air Lines, the airline's former name. Read our community guidelines. Travelling by yourself is an enriching experience, and something everyone should try at least once. Taxi is still one of the most preferred ways to travel. A Travel Safety Belt is an effective and affordable way of protecting your notes, cards, and cash. In Ethiopia and around the world, people are navigating the COVID-19 pandemic, and millions are striving to endure this crisis with an added challenge. Shiftas in Ethiopia. So by all means listen to to official advice and take heed of it, that is the sensible thing to do, but look a little bit deeper as well and use your own judgement. The first rule of thumb to remember when visiting a foreign land is to never get too comfortable with your surroundings. Ethiopia is overall a very safe country, in fact, one of the safest in the area. Benishangul Gumuz and the western part of Oromia State— Reconsider Travel. On the whole, Ethiopia is a safe destination to visit. Pickpocketing in Ethiopia. a high turnover of customers usually means the food is fresh and not stuck in storage. Keeping your money safe from theft and pickpockets is essential when traveling on the road. Stay alert in locations frequented by Westerners. Carry a copy of your passport and visa and leave originals in your hotel safe. Most expats live and work in the capital, Addis Ababa, and while they say that the cost of living is relatively low and you can … The country is also home to over 100 million people, making it the 14th most populous country on the planet. Response to COVID-19 (Updated August 21, 2020) Latest Updates: Effective October 5, 2020 Traveler with a test result of RT PCR coming through international airports in Ethiopia Any international traveler … The country welcomes thousands of new visitors every day and over one million visitors each year. Ethiopia is one of the safest countries in the world and by far the safest in Africa. Ethiopia has lifted stay at home orders and resumed some transportation options and business operations. I'm sorry about your experience here and I hope you'll do some research and come here some day. Ethiopia is located in the Rift Valley, and there is a risk of earthquakes, although none have occurred recently. Serious and violent crimes are rare. The National WASH Inventory (NWI) report of 2012 also indicates that the majority of health facilities in Ethiopia lack access to clean water and only about 32% have access to safe water. Ethiopia is one of the most stable countries in Africa which was never colonized. Now more than ever access to safe water is critical to the health of families in Ethiopia. Ethiopia is a relatively low-crime country compared to other countries. Indonesia Safety 2020 Albania Safety 2020 Is Lombok Safe? Solo travel can be fun and safe at the same time. Country-Specific Information: As of January 4, the Ethiopian Public Health Institute announced the presence of 125,919 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Ethiopia. There are plenty of cheap hostels to choose from, especially in Addis Ababa. Thieves will sometimes operate in these areas, targetting locals as well as tourists. Somali Regional State is close in proximity to terrorist organizations in Somalia, which have aspirations to conduct terrorist attacks in Ethiopia. Public transport is an affordable and reliable way to get around Ethiopia – and relatively safe, too. Pickpocketing is probably the biggest problem to contend with, but that’s mostly in the capital and other large towns. Perhaps you’re travelling as a family and wondering if Ethiopia is a family-friend place, or maybe you simply want to know if the country is safe to explore alone. Pickpockets and thieves are active throughout the city, but particularly on Bole Road and in the Piazza, the Merkato (market), the Entoto and other areas frequented by tourists and foreigners. Government security forces have used lethal force in some areas. The Government of Ethiopia has restricted or shut down internet, cellular data, and phone services during and after civil unrest. Travel Safety Unofficial guides in Ethiopia a rule of thumb in most countries, and also applicable to Ethiopia. 1. Compared with many African countries, Ethiopia is remarkably safe – most of the time. Buildings are not built to earthquake safety codes and may collapse due to strong tremors. Addis Abada, the capital of Ethiopia, is both the cultural and commercial hub of the country.Tourists from all over the world go … The bus drivers are also known for their careless driving. Ethiopians are generally very friendly people and will love chatting with you and your children. There is a moderate level of crime in Ethiopia, including in Addis Ababa. Many protestors were killed in the clashes by police officials. Life in Ethiopia continues as usual. Generally, taxis are safe in Ethiopia. Ethiopia is also the place for the first Hijrah (615 AD) in Islamic history where the Christian king of Ethiopia accepted Muslim refugees from Mecca sent by the prophet Mohamed. There are certain areas you will need to avoid, particularly around some of the borders. Is Ethiopia safe to travel to? The primary thing to remember is trusting your intuition. We highly recommend using World Nomads, but there are many insurance providers to choose from, so make sure to shop around to find the best deal. Some areas have increased risk. Even if you are only visiting for a few days, you should always take out travel cover. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a Level 4 Travel Health Notice for Ethiopia due to COVID-19. Ethiopia is free of wild poliovirus. The growth in tourism is rising, and the locals are reaping the benefits of increased business. Let me be very clear on this, Ethiopia in general is not a dangerous country to travel to. Ethiopia isn’t normally the first place people think of to travel, but it should be on your radar. There are a plethora of exciting things to do in Ethiopia. Reconsider travel to Ethiopia due to COVID-19. Ethiopia is the oldest independent country in Africa and the second-oldest official Christian nation in the world after Armenia. Reply to: Is Ethiopia safe for tourists? How safe is it to travel to Ethiopia? Most of the food is eaten with your hand, often using a piece of the Injera as a spoon. The threat of kidnapping is high. Street crime, such as pickpocketing and purse snatching, are prevalent in the capital. Perhaps there should be more! The East Hararge Region and Guji Zone of Oromia State— Reconsider Travel. Although you can find metered taxis in Ethiopia, they are only really found in Addis Ababa. The U.S. Embassy has limited ability to provide emergency services to U.S. citizens outside of Addis Ababa. Yes, Ethiopia is reasonably safe to visit. We’re believers in responsible travel at Journeying The Globe, and you should be too. Amhara Region forums . Is it too dangerous to travel in Ethiopia? You will also need to watch out for scammers and con artists, particularly around tourist areas. Ridesharing apps like Uber and Grab hardly exist due to unreliable internet connectivity. The country welcomes thousands of new visitors every day and over one million visitors each year. Hence the importance of informed travel. ), Keramas Surf, A Surfer’s Paradise in Bali: A Complete Guide, 9 Of The Best Hotels To Stay In At Iguazu Falls Brazil (2021), Snorkeling in Bali: The 7 Most Incredible Snorkel Spots, Cheapest Places To Stay In Bali: 9 Affordable Budget Hotels, Puerto Vallarta Snorkeling: 5 Incredible Snorkel Spots. Get answers to your questions about Amhara Region . Of course, nothing is 100% risk-free, which is why you need to exercise caution at all times. Not only does the country offer many beautiful sights, but the food is also DELICIOUS. Ethiopia is not without risk, but that doesn’t mean it’s not safe to live here. Visit our website for Travel to High-Risk Areas. You should beware of people who distract you and carefully monitor their pockets. Though like anywhere in Africa, it is still very important to remain vigilant at all times, as far as crime goes, Ethiopia is not that dangerous of a country. Read the entire Travel Advisory. However, Ethiopia is exposed to many natural hazards, including flooding, volcanoes, and earthquakes. Don't expect the conveniences of your country here. Crime significantly increases after dark. Is Ethiopia Safe? Once you head out of the capital Addis Ababa, the roads can be extremely challenging to navigate. Road signs and road names are almost non-existent, which is why we always recommend hiring a driver. Amhara Region forums . Ethiopia does not conform to Western standards for workplace security. Theft is one of the most significant threats, which is why it’s important not to parade an outrageous display of wealth. You are about to leave travel.state.gov for an external website that is not maintained by the U.S. Department of State. U.S. citizens who travel abroad should always have a contingency plan for emergency situations. Visit the Embassy's COVID-19 page for more information on COVID-19 in Ethiopia. Foreigners are entitled to three months driving under their international license when using their own car, after which you need an Ethiopian license. Government security forces have used lethal force in some areas. Ethiopia has an average crime rate. Keep an eye on your possessions at all times, always take caution around busy areas such as bus stations, markets, and other large functions. Thousands of people visit the country every day, without ever encountering any problems. Avoid walking alone after sundown. Injera is the staple dish, which is a pancake-like flatbread, made from incredibly nutritious and gluten-free grain. The Merkato has the worst reputation for pickpockets abound – targeting not just faranjis (white foreigners) but Ethiopians as well. Ethiopia has lifted stay at home orders and resumed some transportation options and business operations. I meet many solo women who come here for an intern or visiting and I haven't came across anyone who complained. 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