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sub-Saharan Africa Topics specific to sub-Saharan Africa. (Includes all countries South of 17 degrees latitude)
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  #1  
Old 6 Nov 2008
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Congo / DRC Border

Does anyone know if there is a possible crossing at Londela-Kayes? Looking on google maps there are road networks both side of the border. I was wondering if this was a feasible route to Matadi rather than via Brazaville.

Also, the Pointe Noire to Brazzaville road is flagged as dangerous on the FCO website. How valid are these warnings? Anyone travelled these roads recently?

Cheers,
Will
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  #2  
Old 7 Nov 2008
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Hey Will,

I assume you are going south, but I don't know exactly how far you are at the moment. The road PN-Brazza is far away from being in good condition and there is a lot of traffic. Thats why there are certain road blocks by people demanding for money in a serious way. If you pay them they are satisfied. Don't count on help by passing vehicles. To avoid this road you only have two possibilities:
- Going via Cabinda-Boma-Matadi or and thats my suggestion to you
- Going via Franceville/Gaboon-Obouya-Brazza like described here

Don't know about your visa hassle in this region but if you like to obtain the angolan visa in Matadi you can not enter DRC with a transit visa.

Cheers Peter
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  #3  
Old 7 Nov 2008
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Cheers for that. Yes, we are going south, still in the UK at the moment though, leaving in just over a month.

I'm working on the assumption that we'll need to get the Angolan transit visa in Matadi, and then we're hoping to extent it in Luanda. So basically I'm fishing for a route into the DRC that's west of Brazza and east of Cabinda.

I don't really understand what you're saying in your last sentence. Please can you clarify.

Cheers,
Will
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  #4  
Old 7 Nov 2008
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Hey Will,

several travellers were rejected at the DRC border cause they didn't obtain a valid angolan visa. This might only be happen if you try to cross DRC with a transit visa. If you enter the DRC with a regular tourist visa they don't mind where you are going to leave the country. So you are able to go to Matadi where you will receive the angolan visa.

I was looking for a similar solution. When we were preparing this section I had contact to some NGOs living in Boma and they told me the smugglers use these roads (west of Brazza east of Cabinda) and he won't go there. But who knows what is the reality if nobody goes there. So maybe you are the first one ;-).

What is your resentment against the route via Franceville?

Cheers Peter
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  #5  
Old 8 Nov 2008
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Thanks for the info.

I've got nothing against the Franceville route, I'm just trying to establish all the possible options.

I've heard about not being able to get into the DRC without an Angola visa, and not being able to get an Angola visa without getting into the DRC. Seems like a bit of a chicken and egg situation to me!

How / where did you get your Angola visa in the end?

Cheers.
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Old 8 Nov 2008
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We went the Franceville-Obouya route earlier this year, and had no probs at all.
We got to Brazza, and tried to get Angolan visa at angolan embassy there, they would not give us a visa but did give us a covering letter to say that we could only obtain the transit visa in Matadi. This letter sufficed for both the congolese and DRC immigratopn officials.
I have since heard from a friend that they managed to get the transit visa from the angolan embassy in Brazza.

Hope that helps
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  #7  
Old 9 Nov 2008
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Cheers Patrick, we'll give that a go.

I'd really like to get a tourist visa rather than a transit. I know this is almost impossible, I have heard rumours of people getting transit visas and then extending them in Luanda. Has anyone actually managed this? Or got confirmation from someone else who has succeeded?
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Old 9 Nov 2008
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I have heard from a lot of people who had extended their visa in luanda (look for the related threads). I have heard also from germans (Pistenkuh – Auf Weltreise mit Sabine und Burkhard Koch) who arrived after seven days in Namibia at the border (the usual transit visa is valid for 5 days) and the only thing happend was, the delay was remarked in a book (for statistic purpose or what ever). But who knows if you can count on this. And, if you want a suggestion, this is something you can't decide at this phase of your journey. This is something you maybe will decide when you reach Luanda. Don't forget to listen to your stomach for this decision.

Cheers Peter
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Old 10 Nov 2008
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Do you know when these people managed to get extensions in Luanda? I've not found any evidence of this in 2008, tried trawling these forums and couldn't find anything.

This site here:
overlandy - Angola

Says they you are not able to extend transit visas.
Quote:
"Apply for a 5day transit visa from the consulate in Matadi (which is issued on the same day for US$80.00). This is the only visa being issued at the moment and is not extendable within Angola, regardless of what the Matadi staff tell you. We were even shown the visa rule book in Lubango."
So I was hoping someone could post here with recent experience of this process.

Another idea I read about was booking a flight to Luanda from Pointe Noire, getting a visa, which apparently you can do with a booked flight, then get a refund for the flight and drive across the border. But again, I've not actually heard of anyone managing this either.

Thanks again for all your help...
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Old 10 Nov 2008
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Hey Will,

investigated the net and... you might be right. Found only successfull attempts in 2007. The last one I found (two byciclists) got the stamps immedately but needed one week to get their passports back :-).
The last entry in 2008 (march) was telling he tried to extend the visa in Luanda but was rejected. He arrived in Namibia after 10 days and it was no problem at all.

Suprisingly everybody you meet in the country (officials or others) are allways friendly and polite in oppposite to the guys who are working in the embassies. Thats not only my impression. So don't be too worried about all that stuff you will discover more unlogical things in this continent.

Cheers Peter
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Old 11 Nov 2008
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Ok, last resort.... Anyone know if the dates on Angolan visas are done in biro? So if you time it so your visa expires in the first 9 days of the month, you can just stick a 2 at the front and magically get a 25 day visa!
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  #12  
Old 11 Nov 2008
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So, I got mine in Berlin. It is no stamp but a paper one espacially Transit-Visa. Nevertheless it must be filled out how many entries and the duration in days. Mine is filled out like this:

Valido para ___(1)___ entrada(s) e um total de permanecia de ___(05)__ dias.

Cheers Peter
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