HOW TO COME ?
All major airlines and several charter flights provide regular flights to Dakar. Count five to six hours flying from Europe and a price for the return trip from 500 euros.
By road, it is possible, crossing Morocco and Mauritania. Inquire beforehand to complete the formalities required for the crossing of these two countries. In Mauritania, the road from Nouhadibou to Nouakchott is now paved.
Yellow fever vaccine is no longer required to enter Senegal except for passengers from yellow fever endemic areas. Vaccines against yellow fever, hepatitis A and B, however, are advised as well as an antimalarial treatment.
For animals, a rabies vaccination certificate and a certificate of good health are required.
Check that your vaccines are up to date. On the spot, pay attention to what you eat and what you drink. Gastric and intestinal disorders are common, although most of the time they are not serious. But do not be paranoid. Do not bathe in stagnant water, bilharziasis is a common disease in Senegal. Consult your doctor for antimalarial treatment.
CURRENCY AND EXCHANGE
Senegal is part of the African Financial Community (CFA) zone. The CFA franc has a fixed parity with the euro (1,000 FCFA = 1,524 euros, 1 euro = 655,957 FCFA). Checkbooks and bank cards will allow you to withdraw money in most banks.
POST, MONEY TRANSFERS
The postal service is reliable. Post offices open from 8:30 am to 4:00 pm. Additional services (express mail, money transfer) are offered. The website of the Post Office: http://www.laposte.sn
Check that you are properly insured for your trip. On the spot, insurance companies represent French agencies.
LANGUAGE, US AND CUSTOMS
The official language is French, understood by a good part of the population. There are a dozen national languages (wolof – the most widespread – serere, diola, puular, soninké, mandingue …) and several others less practiced. Greetings are important: do not deceive yourself, use the traditional Arab salutations (Salaam aleikoum, Aleikoum asalaam).
Senegal is at GMT time (Universal time).
220 V and two-pin plugs.
TELEPHONE AND INTERNET
Indicative of Senegal: 221
The telephone network is of very good quality and you will find telecentres everywhere for your national or international communications, and for sending faxes. Three operators (Orange, Tigo and Expresso) offer cellular telephone services (subscription or card).
Cyber-cafes are very numerous, in Dakar and in the regions. Rates range from 500 to 1,000 CFA francs per hour.
The hotels offer more and more Wifi connection.
The population is made up of 80% Muslims, mainly Wolofs, Toucouleurs, Lebous, Fulani and Madingues. The Diolas and the Sereres practice Christianity, although many mix it with traditional beliefs.
TAXES, TIPS AND MARKETS
Hotels and camps are required to charge a tourism tax of 1,000 CFA francs per person per night, sometimes included in the posted rates. In “modern” restaurants, it is customary to leave a tip, but not in the gargotes. In taxis, you generally do not pay tip, but you sell, as for any purchase in a shop or on the street …