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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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Old 15 Oct 2003
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Location: Lubumbashi, DRC
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Senegal border - live update - good news

Following all discussions, rumours, opinions etc. having taken place here on the forum, I can let you know that entering Senegal with a bike older than 5 years is no problem at all.

Yesterday I crossed from Mauritania into Senegal (via the infamous border of Rosso due to uncertainty about the state of the road to Djama) without any problem (apart obviously from the usual hassling etc.) with my 6-year old BMW, so everybody planning to go to Senegal by bike can stop worrying (unless they change again off course).

Hope this takes away some of the worrying of Africa-bikers...

Good luck, and safe driving.

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Old 17 Oct 2003
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Location: gambia
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I also entered Senegal yesterday via Djama.
But for cars / buses it is still the same problem. I only could enter using my carnet
de passages with my 25 years old car.

from Rosso a transit to gambia with customs
escort is also still possible, but they charge 150,- euro per car.
But it is a lot of discussions here and it seems they may change the law within the next
8 weeks again.
Djama road actually is better than ever, they
did a lot of work after the rain.
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Old 17 Oct 2003
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JEF, did you have a carnet?

If any of you meet other tourists please ask if they got in with an older car WITHOUT a carnet.

I was in Dakar last week and they said that there was an extension given until 17.10 which should be extended to 31.10 for all cars arriving by ship.

The reason for the law is that they are building a factory to produce Tata cars or mimibuses in Thies (70km east of Dakar), but from what I gather it won't hold out the way it is for much longer.

There is also a posting on www.sahara-info.ch about people arriving on 06.10 and needing a convoy and others arriving on 10.10 and being given a passavant but it doesn't say what kind of vehicles or how old they were.
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Old 19 Oct 2003
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After talking to some people here in Senegal it is clear that there remains definitely a lot of confusion. Also very important is that the situatin with legislation and rules can change every minute...

But, the info I got sofar over here:

1. yes, you do need a Carnet (luckily I had one) to cross the border Mauri-Senegal
2. apparently Gambia-Senegal is hardly a problem, so an option seems to be to hire the 'escort' up to Gambia and then return to Senegal if you don't have the carnet (but this is not confirmed)
3. reason for the whole thing seems to be that there are too many old cars in Dakar waiting to be sold, so primarily the rule is aimed at those import, but the Chef de Douane of the northern region (so including Rosso and Diama) just plays hard ball with people coming from the north (that's why Gambia-Senegal seems to be less problem)
4. there are definitely a lot less overlanders and bikers in Senegal for the moment - which could make it easier to bargain for campement prices etcetera - although you wonder if you want to 'punish' the touristic sector that way...

If I receive some more (reliable) info I will let you guys know, but I would say not to let the whole situation stop you from coming south - although keep an eye on latest info wherever possible...

Good luck and safe travelling,

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Old 19 Oct 2003
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Addendum to my last message:

Carnet is definitely needed for +5 year old cars, although nobody could 100% ensure me it was needed for +5 year old motorbikes - but better don't take any risk...

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