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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 5 Oct 2010
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Tourist Visas Angola

does anyone know how i can get hold of a letter of invitation to get a tourist visa into Angola? I have tried emailing various people/ companies in Angola but no luck (no answer!!!!).

I am happy to bribe someone for an extension of a 5 day transit visa if it needs to be done?
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  #2  
Old 6 Oct 2010
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If you are coming down from the north, absolutely forget about it. 5 days is all you will get - others very well positioned have tried and had no luck.

You can get another 5 days for a lot of dollars in the country if you are lucky, but Luanda is not the best place, and you might eat up all of your 5 days trying to get it and then be denied. Sickness might be a good excuse etc

Nutshell - impossible, forget it.

If you are going north, Cape Town will do. Elsewhere it is mainly miss with a few hits.

Search, plenty of info on this already.
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  #3  
Old 6 Oct 2010
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Hi Desert Driver, are you still in the UK?

If so, dont bother getting the visa now. According to my notes, you can get it at Matadi in the DRC. 5 days visa only.

We are going to go UK -> SA west coast route and plan on getting the visa in DRC, or even before that, like Cameroon just in case. Will not apply for visas in london as they are more expensive and you need these invitation letters etc.

If you havent left, when do you plan on leaving? Our original plan was to leave 1st Jan but looks like we now have to leave end of March 2011!
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  #4  
Old 6 Oct 2010
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Matadi won't give you are 5 day visa usually. Your only guaranteed place is Abuja in Nigeria, so for the 20th time on this board:

GET YOUR ANGOLAN VISA IN ABUJA, NIGERA - DO NOT LEAVE NIGERIA WITHOUT IT, IT IS ONLY $30 & YOU MIGHT GET IT IN ONE DAY IF YOU GO EARLY AND ARE ORGANISED.

Some people have been able to get in it Kinshasa, but with considerable hassle. Matadi seems hit and miss, with most people missing lately and being sent back to Kinshasa (which is a fairly awful and unsafe place)
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  #5  
Old 6 Oct 2010
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I was planning on the 5 day in the worst case scenario but was hoping on getting time in Angola rather than just passing through, it seems such a waste to drive all that way and then have to drive flat out to get from 1 end to the other.

I have heard as well as Abuja, also Accra arrange visas and was hoping to hand all visa requests in at Accra and collect them 15 days later in Abuja or Matadi as apparently it takes 15 days to process!!! I can get a letter of invitation for $75! pricey but worth it if we can stay in the country for 30 days!!!

DrKev;
I am leaving around end of Nov from the Canaries, there is a ferry from Las Palmas to Layounne on the 27th Nov or the 4th Dec and i am planning on drving from the UK mid Nov and getting the ferry from Portimao to Las Palmas and that leaves every Sunday and is cheap.

I only have 3 months off starting on the whichever day i catch the ferry from Las Palmas a friend is doing the UK- Las Palmas for me...
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Old 6 Oct 2010
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You are wasting your time trying to get anything other than a 5 day visa from Abuja (& possibly Matadi/Kinshasa). Anything north of Angola, forget it.

*** Although they offer them, they don't issue them *** ;-)
(Maybe it will change though???)

I'm being blunt, sorry, but I know some very well connected people who couldn't do any better than 5 days etc etc etc etc.

They got a 30 day visa in South Africa and went back up.

As you say, a shame for all of us, but that is how they want it.
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  #7  
Old 6 Oct 2010
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With regard to letters of invitation, I would suggest you search google or some other search engine for "safaris Angola", or if you're not squeamish "hunting Angola". Booking a day or 2 in a lodge might just bring some rewards.
Incidentally, I was supporting an expedition earlier this year, and we got four 30 day tourist visas for Angola in Brazzaville. However, there was a huge amount of wrangling and face saving going on way above our heads and I think the Angolan Ambassador in Brazza finally caved in after 5 days of badgering from one of our more, erm, influential sponsors! We were in the embassy with a Spanish biker who managed to get a 7 day transit visa there too. Not sure if they thought he was with us, but his application was certainly separate to ours. Who can say?
roamingyak is right to suggest Abuja as the best bet, but I'm sure he would acknowlege that in Africa it depends on luck, who's in the office at the time, and whether the applicant strikes the right note at the start, as to how things pan out.
Safe travels...
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Old 6 Oct 2010
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I would normally, but not really with Angola.

Visa's are only approved in Luanda, not at the embassies themselves etc etc

I have read and meet so many people being affected by getting an Angolan visa that it has developed into some kind of pleasure to try and warn people on the hubb.

Eg:
nomad adventure
"So many people had told us different stories about the availability of an Angolan visa and the versions change depending on the time you apply so we were a bit apprehensive if we were able to get it in Kinshasa. The best place to get it would have been in Abuja, Nigeria which would have been relatively hassle free but from there you have 2 months before the visa expires so again you are limited with the rest of your journey getting to there. In Brazzaville only those that are flying to Angola can get their visa there which left us with either applying for it in Kinshasa or going straight to the border at Matadi. One of Joni’s friends an American cyclist had been refused entry at Matadi a few days earlier and so had to cycle 300km back to Kinshasa to get his visa so on that advice we went through the application process in Kinshasa.

The process we went through was as follows:....."
(long list of bs follows....)
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  #9  
Old 6 Oct 2010
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Fact remains: 4 x 30 day tourist visas and 1 x 7 day transit for a solo motorcyclist going by land entering at Matadi. We entered at Songololo.
April this year.
Sorry. Not meant to sound like a boast.
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  #10  
Old 7 Oct 2010
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Well you should boast about getting some 30 day visa's, but it sounds like you had exceptional help which isn't likely to be on offer to most.

I have heard of a few people getting 7 day visa's which is a bit better...
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Old 7 Oct 2010
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I have heard of a few people getting 7 day visa's which is a bit better...[/quote]

That was sort of the point I was trying to make, that although you're right about Abuja, I had 1st hand evidence that someone had managed to get a 7 day transit "north of Angola" in Brazza.

Good luck trying to get onto Madagascar btw. Like a challenge?
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  #12  
Old 9 Oct 2010
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If getting a longer visa is possible from the south, then why not do that?

5 days when heading south at full speed, reach SA, get longer visa for Angola and return at leisure?

Theres a lot about "how am I going to cross in only 5 days?", not so much on what happens if you don't? If we ever get there our truck will need more time unless we drive silly hours a day, which I won't consider.

Steve Lorimar had fuel starvation problems and was several days over but nothing happened, no fine.

OverAfrica - Angola

So if I end up a day or two late..................................? Chill

Last edited by grizzly7; 11 Oct 2010 at 19:22. Reason: Numpty typing :)
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  #13  
Old 9 Oct 2010
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Cyclists are often 20 odd days over the visa and they seem to get through ok.

Various people have been a day or two late and either just got stamped out ok or had to really argue to get off the fine.

I think you have more problems if you are caught in Luanda etc with an expired visa - they suspect you have been working etc etc.

But Angola is not straight forward, the average people are nice, but +some+ of the government people are awful. (I had no problems with the police, they were all very friendly and in Luanda went out of their way to help me etc)

Friends of mine have just gotten a 30 day visa in Cape Town - it's quite a few thousand km's back up to Angola though!

Go now is my advice before getting a visa is easy and the country is ruined by tourists ;-p
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Old 11 Oct 2010
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Thanks, I've amended my records - will apply in Abuja. Here I was thinking we would try our luck at a 30-day visa as my wife speaks Portuguese fluently...guess that was wishful thinking!

Wonder if it is possible to use a visa agent in SA to apply in Cape Town (courier your documents to agent in SA etc?)

Otherwise 5 days it is, if they dont want me for more then so be it. Will spend the 30 days in Namibia & Botswana instead
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  #15  
Old 11 Oct 2010
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Yip, its a sad realisation.

I know some extremely well connected people who spoke very useful language (they really could not have had better contacts) and all they got was a transit visa after much effort.

They have been given a visa in Cape Town but the whole process took 3 weeks and quite a few visits to the embassy.

Doing it remotely might be possible if you can cope without your passport for a long time?
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