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March 22, 2020

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August 6, 2020

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COVID-19 Alert
October 14, 2020

Update on U.S. Passport Operations

International Travel

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Country Information

Chad

Chad
Republic of Chad
Reconsider travel to Chad due to COVID-19, crime, terrorism, and minefields.

Reconsider travel to Chad due to COVID-19, crime, terrorism, minefields, and kidnapping.

Read the Department of State’s COVID-19 page before you plan any international travel.  

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a Level 3 Travel Health Notice for Chad due to COVID-19.

Chad has resumed most transportation options, including air and bus travel, reopened some border crossings, permitted most non-essential business to operate, and plans to reopen public schools in October. Other improved conditions have been reported within Chad. Visit the Embassy's COVID-19 page for more information on COVID-19 in Chad.

Country Summary: Violent crimes, such as armed robbery, carjacking, kidnapping, and muggings, have occurred in Chad.

Terrorists may attack with little or no warning, targeting foreigners, local security forces, and civilians. They can easily cross borders, including in the Lake Chad region; borders may close without notice.

There are unmapped and undocumented minefields along the borders with both Libya and Sudan.

The U.S. government has extremely limited ability to provide emergency services to U.S. citizens in Chad as U.S. government employees must obtain special authorization to travel outside of the capital, including the Lake Chad Basin.

Read the country information page.

If you decide to travel to Chad:

Last Update: Reissued with updates to risk indicators.

... [READ MORE]

Embassy Messages

Alerts

Quick Facts

PASSPORT VALIDITY:


6 months

BLANK PASSPORT PAGES:


2 pages

TOURIST VISA REQUIRED:


Yes, obtain in advance

VACCINATIONS:


Yellow fever

CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR ENTRY:


Declare amounts over 5 million CFA

CURRENCY RESTRICTIONS FOR EXIT:


Maximum of 5 million CFA

Embassies and Consulates

U.S. Embassy N’Djamena
Chagoua Roundpoint
B.P. 413
N'Djamena, Chad
Telephone:
+235 22 51 50 17 (Monday – Thursday, 7:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.; Friday, 7:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.)
Emergency after-hours telephone: +235 63 51 78 00
Fax: +235 22 53 91 02
Email: NdjamenaACS@state.gov

 

Destination Description

See our Fact Sheet on Chad for information on U.S. - Chad relations. 

Entry, Exit and Visa Requirements

Please visit the Embassy's COVID-19 page for more information on entry/ exit requirements related to COVID-19 in Chad.

Requirements for Entry:

  • Passport: Must have 2 blank pages and valid for six months after entry into country
  • Visa: Must be obtained before traveling
  • Immunizations: World Health Organization (WHO) card with yellow fever vaccination

Visit the Embassy of Chad website or the nearest Chadian embassy or consulate for visa information. Contact the National Police to extend your visa.

First time tourist or humanitarian/aid workers must:

  • Obtain a registration stamp through the National Police within 72 hours of arrival.
  • Bring two additional passport size photos for registration.

Previous tourists must reregister if you are issued a new passport.

Once registered, any subsequent visit using the same passport does not require a registration stamp.

The U.S. Department of State is unaware of any HIV/AIDS entry restrictions for visitors or foreign residents of Chad.

Find information on dual nationalityprevention of international child abduction, and customs information on our websites.

Safety and Security

Terrorism: Terrorist groups and those inspired by such organizations are intent on attacking U.S. citizens abroad. Terrorists are increasingly using less sophisticated methods of attack – including knives, firearms, and vehicles – to target crowds more effectively. Frequently, their aim is unprotected or vulnerable targets, such as:

  • High-profile public events (sporting contests, political rallies, demonstrations, holiday events, celebratory gatherings, etc.)
  • Hotels, clubs, and restaurants frequented by tourists
  • Places of worship
  • Schools
  • Parks
  • Shopping malls and markets
  • Public transportation systems (including subways, buses, trains, and scheduled commercial flights)

Areas of Concern:

  • The Lake Chad area, which shares a water border with Borno State, Nigeria, a Boko Haram stronghold: A state of emergency continues in the Lake Chad region. Chad remains vulnerable to attacks by Boko Haram, an extremist group based in northeast Nigeria, and its offshoot the Islamic State of Iraq and ash-Sham–West Africa, (ISIS-WA). U.S. citizen missionaries in northern Nigeria, the Far North Region of Cameroon, and Niger have been targeted by ISIS-WA/Boko Haram.

Because of the unpredictable security situation, U.S. Embassy personnel are subject to restrictions when traveling in certain areas of N’Djamena as well as outside of the capital, including the Lake Chad Basin.  

For more information, see our Terrorism page.

Crime: Crime, such as car jackings, continue to be a problem. No specific group appears to be targeted. The trend has shifted from primarily nighttime occurrences to both day and night.

General Precautions:

  • Avoid large concentrations of uniformed security elements, and use extreme caution when visiting areas in which the military operates. 
  • Avoid demonstrations and use vigilance during your movements around the city. Even events intended to be peaceful can become violent.
  • Maintain caution in areas frequented by foreigners, as they may present inviting targets for terrorists.
  • Be cautious when traveling outside of N’Djamena and avoid travel along border areas.
  • Monitor local news and consular messages.
  • Register your travel to Chad via the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP)
  • Borders including the regions of Ennedi-Est, Ennedi-Ouest, Borkou and Tibesti: Civil unrest in Central African Republic (CAR), Libya, Nigeria, and Sudan, occasionally result in cross-border clashes. A permit from the Chadian government is required for visiting the border zones near Libya and Sudan. Travelers may encounter increased border patrols and tightened border security.
  • Zakouma National Park: Heed all instructions given by guides or trackers. Poachers have targeted rangers.
  • The Presidential Palace Compound on Avenue Felix Eboue in N’Djamena: Do not stop your vehicle in front of this compound; avoid driving by it at night.

International Financial Scams: See the Department of State and the FBI pages for information.

Victims of Crime: U.S. citizen victims of sexual assault may contact the U.S. Embassy for assistance. Report crimes to the local police at 2020 throughout Chad (French/Arabic) and contact the U.S. Embassy at (235) 22 51 50 17. Remember that local authorities are responsible for investigating and prosecuting crime. Legal response or recourse for victims of crime in Chad is extremely limited.

See our webpage on help for U.S. victims of crime overseas.

We can:

  • Help you find appropriate medical care
  • Assist you in reporting a crime to the police
  • Contact relatives or friends with your written request
  • Provide general information regarding the victim’s role during the local investigation and following its conclusion
  • Provide a list of local attorneys
  • Provide our information on victim’s compensation programs in the U.S.
  • Provide our information on victim’s compensation programs in Chad.
  • Provide an emergency loan for repatriation to the United States and/or limited medical support in case of destitution
  • Help you find accommodation and arrange flights home
  • Replace a stolen or lost passport

Tourism: Limited formal tourism industry infrastructure is in place. Tourists are considered to be participating in activities at their own risk. Emergency response and subsequent appropriate medical treatment is not available in-country. U.S. citizens are encouraged to purchase medical evacuation insurance. See our webpage for more information on insurance providers for overseas coverage.

Local Laws & Special Circumstances

Criminal Penalties: You are subject to local laws. If you violate local laws, even unknowingly, you may be expelled, arrested, or imprisoned. Individuals establishing a business or practicing a profession that requires additional permits or licensing should seek information from the competent local authorities, prior to practicing or operating a business.

You may be detained for questioning by the police if unable to produce an acceptable form of identification. Convictions for possessing, using, or trafficking in illegal drugs (including marijuana, which is illegal) result in long prison sentences and heavy fines.

Furthermore, some laws are also prosecutable in the United States, regardless of local law. For examples, see our website on crimes against minors abroad and the Department of Justice website.

Arrest Notification: If you are arrested or detained, ask police or prison officials to notify the U.S. Embassy immediately. See our webpage for further information.

Photography: All photography requires a permit issued by the Ministry of Public Security and Immigration. Additionally, it is illegal to take pictures of military sites, official buildings, airports, and public monuments. Such sites are not always clearly marked.

Telecommunications and Satellite Phones: Satellite phones are illegal. Travelers using satellite phones risk arrest and seizure of phones. Cellular phones are widely used. SIM cards can be purchased locally and used with a compatible cell phone. The two major providers are Tigo and Airtel. Chadian networks use GSM technology.

Military Service for Dual U.S. – Chadian citizens: Article 56 of the Chadian Constitution states that military service is obligatory for both men and women. The conditions for fulfillment of this duty are determined by local authorities.

Currency: The Central African CFA franc (XAF) is the official currency. ATMs are unreliable. There are several Western Union and Money Gram offices in N’Djamena. Exporting local currency is prohibited and the export of foreign currency is limited to the amount declared upon arrival.

Travel authorization (“autorisation de circuler”): Before traveling to a humanitarian zone or refugee camp, anyone planning to take photos, including journalists, need prior approval from HAMA (Haute Autorité des Médias et de l’Audiovisuel) and ANS (Agence Nationale de Sécurité). NGO humanitarian workers must submit a request for a travel authorization to the Ministry of Public Security via the “Commission Nationale pour l’Accueil et la Reinsertion des Refugies et Rapatries” (CNARR). Allow 3-4 days for processing and the request should include:

  • Visitor’s or institution’s request letter
  • Copies of the passport’s biographical and visa pages
  • CNARR application form

Faith-Based Travelers: See the following web pages for details:

LGBTI Travelers: Strong social and cultural strictures against homosexuality exist, and LGBTI organizations do not operate openly in the country. Chadian law punishes same sex sexual relations with prison and a fine.

See our LGBTI Travel Information page and section 6 of our Human Rights Report for further details.

Travelers Who Require Accessibility Assistance: Access to transportation, lodging, and public buildings is limited. There are few sidewalks and no curb-cuts, and most buildings lack elevators.

Students: See our Students Abroad page and FBI travel tips.

Women Travelers: In addition to the safety and security measures outlined elsewhere, women travelers should never go walking or jogging alone in secluded areas, particularly at night; and never tell strangers, however friendly, where you are staying or disclose travel plans.

While the law prohibits marriage before the age of 18, forced marriage of underage girls and women remains a serious problem. The law also prohibits female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C), but the practice remains widespread.

Domestic violence, including spousal abuse, is widespread. Wives have limited legal recourse in cases of abuse. There is no reliable data on the extent of sexual assault though it is widely acknowledged as a problem. Cultural and social biases often lead to rape not being reported.

See our travel tips for Women Travelers.

Health

Please visit the Embassy's COVID-19 page for more information on COVID-19 in Chad .

Consult the CDC website for Chad prior to travel.

Medical facilities are limited throughout the country. In the capital, International SOS offers limited U.S. standard medical and emergency care including ambulances, referrals, and evacuation. Membership is required and should be purchased prior to arrival in country. There are five hospitals in N’Djamena. Hopital de la Renaissance is the only one recommended for use by U.S. citizens; however, adequate care is contingent upon personnel availability, some medical equipment is nonoperational and medical supplies and medical personnel can vary.

Carry your prescription medication in the original packaging that is labeled with your name, medication name and prescribing provider. Carry all over the counter medication in original packaging.

In the summer, temperatures can reach 130 degrees Fahrenheit, and dehydration is a concern. 

Ambulance services are:

  • not widely available and training and availability of emergency responders may
  • be below U.S. standards.
  • not equipped with state-of-the-art medical equipment.
  • not staffed with trained paramedics and often have little or no medical equipment.
  • Injured or seriously ill travelers may prefer to take a taxi or private vehicle to the nearest major hospital rather than wait for an ambulance.

We do not pay medical bills. Be aware that U.S. Medicare/Medicaid does not apply overseas. Most hospitals and doctors overseas do not accept U.S. health insurance. All care providers expect payment in U.S. dollars before treatment.

Medical Insurance: Make sure your health insurance covers you overseas. Most care providers overseas only accept cash payments. See our webpage for more information on insurance providers for overseas coverage. Visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for more information on type of insurance you should consider before you travel overseas.

We strongly recommend supplemental medical insurance with medical evacuation coverage.

Vaccinations: Be up-to-date on all vaccinations recommended by U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Air Quality: Visit AirNow Department of State for information on air quality at U.S. Embassies

and Consulates.

During the dry season (November-April), dust storms may diminish air quality.

Air pollution is a significant problem in several major cities in Chad. Consider the impact seasonal smog and heavy particulate pollution may have on you and consult your doctor before traveling if necessary.

The air quality varies considerably and fluctuates with the seasons. It is typically at its worst in the dry season.  People at the greatest risk from particle pollution exposure include:

  • Infants, children, and teens
  • People over 65 years of age
  • People with lung disease such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), which includes chronic bronchitis and emphysema
  • People with heart disease or diabetes
  • People who work or are active outdoors

Health facilities in general:

  • Health facilities in N’Djamena and in rural Chad are below U.S. Standards.
  • Public medical clinics lack basic resources and supplies.
  • Hospitals and doctors may require payment “up front” prior to service or admission. Credit card payment is not available. Most hospitals and medical professionals require cash payment.
  • Private hospitals usually require advance payment or proof of adequate insurance before admitting a patient.
  • Medical staff may speak little or no English.
  • Generally, in public hospitals only minimal staff is available overnight in non-emergency wards. Consider hiring a private nurse or having family spend the night with the patient, especially a minor child.
  • Patients bear all costs for transfer to or between hospitals.
  • Psychological and psychiatric services are limited, even in the larger cities, with hospital-based care only available through government institutions.

The U.S. Embassy maintains a list of doctors and hospitals. We do not endorse or recommend any specific medical provider or clinic.

Pharmaceuticals       

  • Exercise caution when purchasing medication overseas. Pharmaceuticals, both over the counter and requiring prescription in the United States, are often readily available for purchase with little controls. Counterfeit medication is common and may prove to be ineffective, the wrong strength, or contain dangerous ingredients. Medication should be purchased in consultation with a medical professional and from reputable establishments.
  • U.S. Customs and Border Protection and the Food and Drug Administration are responsible for rules governing the transport of medication back to the United States. Medication purchased abroad must meet their requirements to be legally brought back into the United States. Medication should be for personal use and must be approved for usage in the United States. Please visit the U.S. Customs and Border Protection and the Food and Drug Administration websites for more information.

Water Quality

Tap water is not potable. Bottled water and beverages are generally safe, although you should be aware that many restaurants and hotels serve tap water unless bottled water is specifically requested. Be aware that ice for drinks may be made using tap water.

Adventure Travel

  • Visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for more information about Adventure Travel.

The following diseases are prevalent:

Use the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended mosquito repellents and sleep under insecticide-impregnated mosquito nets. Chemoprophylaxis is recommended for all travelers even for short stays.

There are shortages of food, water, medicine, medical supplies, etc. throughout Chad.

Visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for more information about Resources for Travelers regarding specific issues in Chad.

Further health information:

Travel and Transportation

Road Conditions and Safety: In N’Djamena, main roads are paved; others within the city are dirt and gravel roads that have large ruts and potholes. During the rainy season, mid-June to mid-September, many roads become impassable. Numerous traffic accidents occur daily. Excessive speed, erratic driving habits, and chronic lack of road signs make driving dangerous. Street lighting is limited, and it is difficult to see pedestrians, cyclists, wheelchairs, and animals at night.

Other risks include:

  • Poor vehicle maintenance
  • Headlights that are not used
  • Vehicles with only one operable head light that give the appearance of being a motorcycle at night, often with deadly consequences for on-coming traffic

To mitigate the threat of roadside crime or becoming stuck in sand/mud when driving outside of N’Djamena, travel in daylight hours only.

Carry:

  • Spare tires
  • Food and water
  • Maps and navigation equipment
  • Extra fuel as it may be scarce in rural areas.
  • Professional roadside assistance service is not available.

Traffic Laws: An international driving permit is required. Use of cell phones while driving and/or driving a vehicle with tinted windows is illegal.

Roadblocks: Security forces set up spontaneous roadblocks in and around N’Djamena, especially after dark, to conduct vehicle searches and check passengers for identity papers. They may also solicit bribes and require drivers to submit to pat-down body searches.

  • Dim headlights as you slowly approach the check point.
  • Do not permit soldiers or police officers to enter your vehicle, and do not get into the vehicle of anyone purporting to be a security official.
  • Comply with the local authorities, and remain courteous and calm. If threatened, do not resist.
  • Remain inside your vehicle with doors locked and open the window slightly to communicate.
  • Show documents through the window. Carry color photocopies of your passport and other identity documents to give to police.
  • Keep original documents in a secure location.
  • Report harassment to the U.S. Embassy.

Accidents: Remain inside the vehicle, and call for police. Although it is illegal to move your vehicle before police arrive, if a hostile mob forms or you feel your safety is in danger, leave the scene and proceed directly to the nearest police station to report the incident.

Public Transportation: Public transportation is not recommended for tourists. Privately operated minibuses are often not properly maintained and dangerous. Although taxis are available throughout N’Djamena, they are unsafe and should not be used. Hire private transport from reliable sources; travel agencies and local hotels may also be able to arrange private transport for you.

  • Do not accept rides that are not prearranged.
  • Confirm identity of the assigned driver.
  • Decline, politely but firmly, unofficial airport assistance with your luggage.

See our Road Safety page for more information.

Aviation Safety Oversight: As there is no direct commercial air service to the United States by carriers registered in Chad, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has not assessed the government’s Civil Aviation Authority for compliance with International Civil Aviation Organization aviation safety standards. Further information may be found on the FAA’s safety assessment page.

For additional travel information

International Parental Child Abduction

 For additional IPCA-related information, please see the International Child Abduction Prevention and Return Act (ICAPRA) report.

Last Updated: September 30, 2019

Travel Advisory Levels

Assistance for U.S. Citizens

U.S. Embassy N’Djamena
Chagoua Roundpoint
B.P. 413
N'Djamena, Chad
Telephone
+235 22 51 50 17 (Monday - Thursday, 7:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.; Friday, 7:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.)
Emergency
+235 63 51 78 00
Fax
235 22 53 91 02

Chad Map