All visitors to Ethiopia (except for Kenyan and Djiboutian nationals) are required to obtain an entry visa. Since 2002, tourists from 33 countries (listed here: with additional information) are able to obtain entry visas upon their arrival at Bole International Airport in Addis Ababa, and at the airport in Dire Dawa. In September 2009, the fees for visa-upon-arrival was US$20, regardless of whether one is applying for a Tourist, Business or Transit Visa.
The procedure is relatively quick and painless; just look for a door with a sign "Visa" on the left hand before the immigration counters. Please note, that currently those travelling into Ethiopia by land border will face EXTREME DIFFICULTY in obtaining a Visa at an overseas consulate (e.g. Kampala) as there is a backwards policy of not granting visas to non-residents. Thus, the only true way to gain a visa if in Africa is by flying in, or posting your passport back to your home consulate. Be warned, that Ethiopian consulates are currently upholding this policy with no negotiation.
Ethiopian Airlines is one of the most successful and reputable airlines in Africa. Bole International Airport in Addis Ababa is the main hub for Ethiopian Airlines and also hosts Lufthansa, Sudan Airways, Kenya Airways, British Airways, KLM, Turkish Airways, Emirates, Gulf Air,Egypt Air and fly Dubai. A new runway and international terminal, which was said to be the largest in Africa, opened in 2003.
CAUTION Arriving in the country without a major currency such as Euros or American Dollars is not recommended, especially if one has not obtained a visa prior to arrival. Travellers cheques and cash can be exchanged at the airport.
- If you have a prior arrangement, many hotels will send a vehicle to pick up pre-booked guests from the airport.
- There are also other international airports in Dire Dawa, Mekele, Bahir Dar