Travel.State.Gov > International Travel > Country Information > Chad International Travel Information
Requirements for Entry:
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:
Once registered, any subsequent visits 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.
See Travel Advisory for Chad warning of ongoing tensions and potential terrorist activities.
Crime: 400,000 refugees and 150,000 displaced Chadians add to Chad’s volatile security environment. U.S. Embassy personnel are subject to restrictions when traveling in certain areas of N’Djamena and outside the capital, including Lake Chad Basin. Carjackings occurring day and night outside N’Djamena increased without targeting specific groups.
Avoid following areas:
Areas of Concern:
Lake Chad: A state of emergency continues in Lake Chad region. Chad remains vulnerable to attacks by Boko Haram. U.S. citizen missionaries in northern Nigeria, the Far North Region of Cameroon, and Niger have been targeted.
Borders: Civil unrest in Central African Republic, Libya, Niger, 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.
Victims of Crime: Legal response/recourse for victims of crime is extremely limited. The Embassy’s role in local legal matters is strictly limited.
U.S. citizen victims of sexual violence should first contact the U.S. Embassy. Report crimes to the local police at 2020 throughout Chad (French/Arabic) and contact the U.S. Embassy at (235) 22 51 50 17.
See our webpage on help for U.S. victims of crime overseas.
Domestic Violence: U.S. citizen victims of domestic violence may contact the Embassy for assistance.
For further information:
Criminal Penalties: You are subject to local laws. If you violate local laws, even unknowingly, you may be expelled, arrested, or imprisoned. You may be taken for questioning by police if unable to produce acceptable forms of identification. Convictions for possessing, using, and/or trafficking illegal drugs result in long prison sentences and heavy fines.
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 Ministry of Public Security and Immigration. It is illegal to take pictures of military sites, official buildings, airports, and public monuments - not always clearly marked.
Telecommunications and Satellite Phones: Thuraya satellite phones are illegal. Travelers using them risk seizure of phones and arrest. Iridium satellite phones are legal. Cellular phones are widely used. SIM cards can be purchased locally. Major providers: Tigo and Airtel.
Military Service for Dual U.S. – Chadian citizens: Military service is obligatory. 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. Several Western Union and Money Gram offices operate in N’Djamena.
Travel authorization (“autorisation de circuler”): Before traveling to humanitarian zones or refugee camps, NGO humanitarian workers must submit a request for travel authorization to the Ministry of Public Security and Immigration via the “Commission Nationale pour l’Accueil et la Reinsertion des Refugies et Rapatries” (CNARR). Allow 3-4 days for processing.
Faith-Based Travelers: See our following webpages for details:
LGBTI Travelers: Strong social and cultural strictures against homosexuality exist, and no known LGBTI organizations operate in the country. The law does not define “unnatural acts,” which has been used against LGBTI persons in the past.
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.
Women Travelers: Women should be extremely cautious when traveling in Chad, particularly if traveling alone. Never walk or jog alone in secluded areas, particularly at night; never disclose to strangers your lodging location or travel plans.
While the law prohibits marriage before age of 18, forced marriage remains a serious problem. The law also prohibits female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C), but the practice remains widespread.
Although the law prohibits violence against women, domestic violence is widespread. Wives have limited legal recourse in cases of abuse. Cultural and social biases often lead to rape cases not being filed.
See our travel tips for Women Travelers.
Consult CDC’s website for Chad.
Medical facilities are limited. In N’Djamena, International SOS offers limited U.S. standard medical/emergency care including evacuation. Membership required. Only Hopital de la Renaissance is recommended. Adequate care is contingent upon availability of personnel, medical equipment/supplies.
We do not pay medical bills. Be aware that U.S. Medicare does not apply overseas.
Medical Insurance: Make sure your health insurance plan provides coverage overseas. Most care providers overseas only accept cash payments. See our webpage for more information on insurance providers for overseas coverage.
We strongly recommend supplemental medical insurance to cover medical evacuation.
If traveling with prescription medication, check with the government of Chad, to ensure the medication is legal in Chad. Always carry your prescription medication in original packaging with your doctor’s prescription.
Breathing masks are recommended November-April when dust storms diminish air quality.
The following diseases are prevalent:
Vaccinations: Be up-to-date on all vaccinations recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Further health information:
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 on a daily basis. 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, especially at night.
Other risks include:
To mitigate the threat of roadside crime or becoming stuck in sand/mud when driving outside of N’Djamena, travel in daylight hours only.
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.
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. Taxis are are unsafe and should not be used. Hire private transport from reliable sources such as travel agencies and local hotels.
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.