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Asmara (Asmera)
Agordat (Akordat)
Assab (Asseb)
Barentu
Dahlak islands
Dekemhare (Decemhare)
Ghinda (Ginda)
Keren (Cheren)
Massawa (Massauwa)
Mendefera (Adi Ugri)
Nakfa (Nacfa)
Semenawi Bahri (Filfil)
Tessenei (Teseney)

 

Eritrean Airlines logo

Egyptair logo

Yemenia logo

Sudan Airways logo

Nova Airways logo

British Airways logo

Ethiopian Airlinrs logo

   

 

Transport in / to Eritrea

 

Visas and travel permits

Visa's are required for all visitors and should be obtained in advance from an Eritrean Embassy or Consulate before entering Asmara. To obtain your visa, you need to bring your passport, valid for at least six months from your date of visa application and one recent passport-size photo. For visa extensions you will need a photo. A fee must be paid in euro's or dollars. The original visa can be renewed twice. Extension of your visa should be arranged before your visa for Eritrea expires. Immigration Department tel. 118380, visas tel. 162154.

On arrival at Asmara International Airport you will have to complete an immigration card, and any major electronic devices may be registered at the customs desk. You will describe the details of these items on a passengers declaration form. The serial number of this form will be registered in your visa. This form must be returned to the customs officer when leaving Eritrea. The traveler may have to fill a currency declaration form, declaring the foreign exchange in his or her possession at the time of arrival in Eritrea. A similar form has to be filled upon departure. The two forms and the amount exchanged have to be consistent. This is to deter black-market business. 

Be sure to get updated information from an Eritrean Embassy if you are planning to travel to Eritrea. You are kindly advised to visit the office of the Eritrean Ministry of Tourism (Harnet Avenue, Asmara) to inquire for necessary documents to travel through Eritrea (Foreigners Permit to Travel, which can be obtained from the Tourism Service Center. Harnet Avenue Asmara or from any regional administration).

The tense situation between Ethiopia and Eritrea resulted in a lot of check-points and travel restrictions (Temporary Security Zone). The checks are aimed at Eritrean deserters and Ethiopian infiltrators and not emphasize especially on tourists. The Eritrean military police will politely ask you to enter small "immigration offices" where they will log the movements of anyone of foreign origin for security reasons.

To visit monasteries of the Eritrean Orthodox Church (e.g. Debre Bizen and Debre Sina), the visitor needs a permit issued by the Patriarchate of the Eritrean Orthodox Church (Warsai Street, Tiravolo Asmara, telephone 182098 or 182199) for 150 Nakfa (2007). To visit Eritrea's archeological sites, the visitor needs a permit issued by the National Museum (close to the Selam Hotel, telephone 1122389) for 150 Nakfa (2007). A permit to visit the Dahlak Islands can by obtained from the Ministry of Tourism in Massawa (Taulud Island, telephone 552797) for 300 Nakfa (2007). 

When leaving Eritrea, you are charged a departure tax (embarkation fee) of 20 US dollar/euro. Please check the exact amount upon arrival on Asmara International Airport, since the fee may be subject to change. You also will have to complete an exit form. All electronic items and video camera’s should be declared on arrival and are signed of on departure.

 

Air transport

Airlines that offer services to Asmara (October 2014):

Arrivals & Departures from Asmara International Airport (October 2014)
             
Arrivals Airline from Departures Airline to
Mon MS833 EgyptAir Cairo MS834 EgyptAir Cairo
UE102 NasAir Massawa UE101 NasAir Massawa
UE602 NasAir Jeddah UE601 NasAir Jeddah
IY630 Yemenia Sanaa IY631 Yemenia Sanaa
             
Arrivals Airline from Departures Airline to
Teu MS833 EgyptAir Cairo MS834 EgyptAir Cairo
UE102 NasAir Massawa UE101 NasAir Massawa
UE202 NasAir Nairobi UE201 NasAir Nairobi
UE206 NasAir Khartoum UE205 NasAir Khartoum
IY630 Yemenia Sanaa IY631 Yemenia Sanaa
             
Arrivals Airline from Departures Airline to
Wed MS833 EgyptAir Cairo MS834 EgyptAir Cairo
TK578 Turkish Airlines Istanbul TK579 Turkish Airlines Istanbul
UE102 NasAir Massawa UE101 NasAir Massawa
UE602 NasAir Jeddah UE601 NasAir Jeddah
O9 214 Nova Airways Khartoum O9 215 Nova Airways Khartoum
UE502 NasAir Aden UE501 NasAir Aden
             
Arrivals Airline from Departures Airline to
Thu MS833 EgyptAir Cairo MS834 EgyptAir Cairo
UE102 NasAir Massawa UE101 NasAir Massawa
B8 357 Eritrean Dubai B8 356 Eritrean Dubai
UE602 NasAir Jeddah UE601 NasAir Jeddah
UE206 NasAir Khartoum UE205 NasAir Khartoum
             
Arrivals Airline from Departures Airline to
Fri TK578 Turkish Airlines Istanbul TK579 Turkish Airlines Istanbul
MS833 EgyptAir Cairo MS834 EgyptAir Cairo
B8 385 Eritrean Khartoum B8 384 Eritrean Khartoum
UE102 NasAir Massawa UE101 NasAir Massawa
UE602 NasAir Jeddah UE601 NasAir Jeddah
UE212 NasAir Entebbe UE211 NasAir Juba
IY630 Yemenia Sanaa IY631 Yemenia Sanaa
             
Arrivals Airline from Departures Airline to
Sat MS833 EgyptAir Cairo MS834 EgyptAir Cairo
UE102 NasAir Massawa UE101 NasAir Massawa
UE602 NasAir Jeddah UE601 NasAir Jeddah
B8 331 Eritrean Jeddah B8 330 Eritrean Jeddah
O9 214 Nova Airways Khartoum O9 215 Nova Airways Khartoum
UE502 NasAir Aden UE501 NasAir Aden
UE206 NasAir Khartoum UE205 NasAir Khartoum
             
Arrivals Airline from Departures Airline to
Sun TK578 Turkish Airlines Istanbul TK579 Turkish Airlines Istanbul
IY630 Yemenia Sanaa IY631 Yemenia Sanaa
MS833 EgyptAir Cairo MS834 EgyptAir Cairo
B8 375 Eritrean Dubai B8 374 Eritrean Dubai
UE102 NasAir Massawa UE101 NasAir Massawa
UE602 NasAir Jeddah UE601 NasAir Jeddah
 
 
 

  

 

Asmara International Airport

Asmara International Airport.

Eritrean Airlines & Sudan Airways - Asmara International Airport.
 

 

Railways

Eritrean Railways successfully rehabilitated part of its historic railway service. The 117 kilometer line between Massawa and Asmara was completed in February 2003. There are currently at least eight locomotives in working order.

The railway is a proud symbol of unity, perseverance and a triumph of engineering for all the people of Eritrea, and one of the world's most spectacular journeys for railway enthusiasts, looking for new adventure. The sharp decrease in altitude within a short distance is one of the unique characteristics of the railroad. The scenery also changes with the rise of altitude. The vegetation changes from scrub bush and sand near Massawa, to pine trees near Asmara, with prickly pear cactus covering many of the cliff sides between.

Since the train is not competitive to bus transport, there is no regular service. The trains can be chartered by groups. Apart from its chartered services, Eritrean Railways has began to provide round trip services from Asmara to Nefasit and Arberebu on Sundays.

More information: Eritrean Railways (phone 00291 123365 fax 201785) or one of the official tour operators in Asmara. 

 

One of the many bridges of the Eritrean railway

More about the Eritrean Railway >>>

 

Public bus

Buses are reasonably comfortable and certainly affordable. But there is no set timetable. You pay your fair and just wait until the bus is full, when it will depart. For some of the long distance buses advance reservations are recommended.

For comprehensive information on public buses in Eritrea and taxi's please visit our pages on the Asmara buses.

 

Map of Eritrea - Intercity transport in Eritrea by public bus - main routes. 

Intercity transport in Eritrea by public bus - main routes.

 

By sea

Eritrea has two major ports on the Red Sea, Massawa and Assab. A car/passenger ferry floats once a week between Massawa and Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

You can hire a boat in Massawa for a trip to the islands or for diving in the Red Sea. However, you need permission to visit the islands by the Eritrean Shipping Lines representative in Massawa. If you are on an organized tour through an official tour operator, the permits should be arranged for you.

 

Motoring and Car rentals

Eritrea has a good network of roads. Asphalt all-weather roads connect the capital city Asmara with one of the principal Eritrean ports, Massawa, and several other provincial towns. In addition, there are hundreds of kilometers of all-weather dirt roads linking other villages of Eritrea. Over long distances in Eritrea, cars can be twice as quick as buses.

Africa Rent Car and Fontana Rent A Car have the largest fleet of cars available for hire starting with $60 per day for a saloon car (only adequate for traveling from Asmara to the coast, to Keren or to the south) up to $200 for a Land Cruiser. Driving is on the right-hand side of the road and a valid international driving license is required. In some areas driving at night is prohibited. Fuel is easily obtainable everywhere.

 

Africa Rent Car Nakfa p/day Free kms Rate for extra kms
1 Toyota Land Cruiser 4WD 1997-2008 diesel 3,100 100 km 3
2 Pick up 4WD 2003-2008 diesel 2,800 100 km 3
3 Toyota Corolla 2008-2010 gasoline 1,200 100 km 3
4 Toyota Corolla 2004-2007 gasoline 1,000 100 km 3
5 Toyota Corolla 1998-2003 gasoline 1,500 100 km 3
6 Toyota Corolla 1992-1997 gasoline    900   50 km 3
     
     
Zighe and her brother Sammy in their Africa Garage

Zighe and her brother Sammy - Africa Car Rental

Africa Rent Car
Tel +2911 121755, 202597 (office)
Tel +2911 161825 (residential)
Fax +2911 202597
Mobile (07) 138483 or 113417

 

  • All prices include insurance and maintenance services.

  • All 4WD vehicles come with driver (included in price).

  • We provide drivers for other cars at clients request for 300 Nakfa per day/driver.

  • For trips to Southern Red Sea, additional 1000 Nakfa for 4WD vehicles will be charged.

  • The hirer shall refill the tank to correspond the initial page of fuel indicator reading (or fuel will be charged).

  • All small and sedan cars are operated on asphalt rads only

  • 10% sales tax will be added to the final invoice.

  • All cars have passed annual road safety test for 2014, given a certificate and a new plate by Road Transport Authorities.

 

P.O. Box 6660 - Asmara Eritrea
176 Nora Street 29 - Asmara
(Near the Red Sea Trade Building)
E-mail: afrecar@yahoo.com
All prices quoted in October 2014 when 1 US$ = 15 Nakfa
Prices and exchange rates may be subject to change
 
 
Fontana Car Rental Nakfa p/day Free kms Rate for extra kms
1 Toyota Land Cruiser 2007 3,300 100 km 4 Nakfa
2 Toyota Hilux Pick up double cab 2010 3,000 100 km 4 Nakfa
3 Toyota Hilux Pick up double cab 2005 2,800 100 km 4 Nakfa
4 Toyota Corolla 2011 1,200   50 km 3 Nakfa
5 Toyota Corolla and Honda 2007 1,000   50 km 3 Nakfa
6 Nissan 2005    900   50 km 3 Nakfa
7 Toyota Corolla 1997    800   50 km 3 Nakfa
     
 
Entrance of Fontana Rent A Car - Asmara Eritrea
  • Toyota Land Cruisers are always rented with our driver and driver fee is included.

  • If the Toyota Land Cruisers are needed for the Southern Red Sea Trip, 1000 Nakfa per day is added.

  • If the Toyota Corolla / Corona and Honda / Nissan are ordered with driver, 250 Nakfa per day is added.

  • Diesel: we deliver with a full tank, and when you return it, you will pay to refuel it to full.

  • Petrol: we deliver with a full tank, and when you return it, you will return it with a full tank.

  • 10% service tax is not included in the prices listed.

Fontana Rent A Car
Tel  +2911 120052
Fax +2911 127905

66 Ras Beyene Beraki Street, Asmara
P.O. Box 6050 - Asmara Eritrea
e-mail: fontana@gemel.com.er

Entrance of Fontana Rent A Car - Asmara Eritrea All prices quoted in October 2014 when 1 US$ = 15 Nakfa
Prices and exchange rates may be subject to change
   

Total fuel station and motel
Asmara Eritrea.

Diesel 45 Nakfa  and petrol 50-80 Nakfa per liter.

All prices quoted in October 2014 when 1 US$ = 15 Nakfa
Prices and exchange rates may be subject to change
 
Other agencies renting vehicles E-mail Tel. +2911 Fax +2911
Leo Car Rent dilorenzo@cts.com.er 125859 202306
Travel House International travelhouse@gemel.com.er 201881 / 201882 120751

 

Traveling through rough Eritrea with a Toyota Land Cruiser

Traveling through rough Eritrea with a Toyota Land Cruiser.

 

Cycling

Although the bicycle is popular in Eritrea it is not usual to rent them to tourists. The main streets in the center of Asmara are closed for bicycles. Entering them is prohibited and trespassers may be fined. The bicycle will be confiscated. These rules date from the time when the Eritrean resistance harassed Ethiopian targets and collaborators using their bicycles. The Ethiopian authorities then banned these bicycles from the center of Asmara. The rules survived more then ten years of liberation.

If you decide to rent a bike, be prepared to pay the equivalent of two dollar per day (long term rent) or three dollars for one day. Test the bike before renting it. Brakes are important if you are planning the bike in mountainous areas!

 

The Asmara-Massawa cableway

The Italians also built a cable-car line. This was the longest cableway in the world and was used to transport supplies direct from the port in Massawa to Asmara city center (75km). It had 1,620 trolleys, each 100m apart and able to carry 300kg and moved at 9km per hour. It could carry 720 ton of goods per day. It did take passengers as well. It suffered extensive damage during World War II and was looted of materials by the British 'caretaker' administration of 1941-52, which sold the metal as scrap to Sudan and Pakistan.

 

The Asmara-Massawa cableway

More about the Eritrean Ropeway > > >

 

Other

Horse-drawn gharis and camels are also plentiful although they tend to be used functionally rather than as transport for tourists.

 

Telecommunications

Public telephones are easy to find in Eritrea's major city's. Although coin phones are available, it is more convenient to use telephone cards, which are available from the telecommunications offices in service values of 14, 27, 34, 62 or 121 Nakfa. At the telecommunications building in Harnet Avenue, you can make international calls.

Mobile phones have been introduced in Eritrea in 2003 and are now widely used. Prepaid cards are available from the telecommunications offices in service values of 100, or 300 Nakfa (plus 10 Nakfa per card)

For more information please call Eritel customers office Asmara Eritrea +2911 202128 / 127800

Information operator (local) 97 

Eritrea Telecommunication Services Corporation - Eritel

E-mail & Internet

There is a rapidly expanding number of places offering Internet access in Asmara, Keren and Massawa. the charge is 10 Nakfa per hour (June 2011). Connections are slow. TSE Cyber Cafe (Telecomunications Office) and TFanus Enterprises offer the best internet connections in Asmara.

 

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