Country-specific safety instructions
Travel to Niger is strongly discouraged.
The Islamist terrorist organization Boko Haram is also attacking targets in southeast Niger (Diffa region). It cannot be ruled out that terrorist attacks could also occur in other cities in the country. Particular caution is therefore called for in Niamey too.
Demonstrations by civil society and other groups are still to be expected. Even if these are mostly peaceful, their dynamics are difficult to assess. It is therefore urgently advised to stay away from large gatherings of people, to exercise caution when driving in the city and also to follow reports in the local media.
According to timedictionary, in the North African countries and the countries bordering south of the Sahara there is generally an increased risk of acts of terrorist violence, targeted kidnappings and criminal attacks. In remote areas of Niger in particular, there is an increased risk of attacks and kidnappings for nationals of western countries, both from criminal gangs and from Al-Qaida in the Maghreb (AQM). The Islamist terrorist organizations active in northern Nigeria, especially Boko Haram and Ansaru, also pose a risk. There is a significantly increased risk of attacks and kidnapping, among other things, for destinations where Western nationals regularly visit.
We therefore warn against traveling outside of Niamey. This also applies expressly to the National Park “W”. It is pointed out that there is an incalculable risk of attack and kidnapping in Niamey, even if the security situation in the city has stabilized due to the increased police and military presence. Large crowds in particular should be avoided.
Due to the attacks in Boko Haram, the Diffa regions, but also Maradi and Zinder in the south and southeast of the country, are classified as particularly endangered.
After the military seized power by force in 2010, the promised return to democracy with free and democratic elections was implemented in spring 2011. With the swearing-in of President Issoufou in April 2011, Nigerien politics returned to normal. After being re-elected in March 2016, he is now in his second term. However, tensions between the opposition and the government persist. The local elections planned for May 9, 2016 have been postponed to January 2017, actions or demonstrations cannot be ruled out. The situation in Libya, northern Mali and northern Nigeria and the associated consequences for Niger are of major concern. There is a risk that active Islamist terrorist organizations there are expanding their activities to Niger and that organized crime is increasing in the region. The border area between Mali and Niger and the country triangle Mali-Niger-Burkina Faso are particularly endangered.
The mines laid in the course of the officially resolved armed conflict between rebel groups and the military, which are not limited to the Agadez region, pose particular dangers. There is a risk of accidental victimization.
There is still a risk of mines in the Aïr and parts of the Djado Mountains (extreme northeast of Niger). The affected zones are known to local guides and the military and must be bypassed extensively.
Travel over land
The roads in Niger are often in poor condition. Well-developed sections turn into sections with deep potholes or slopes without warning. Risky driving, animals roaming free and vehicles in poor technical condition can also cause danger. There is also a risk of roadblocks by bandits on certain routes.
We strongly advise against driving in the dark outside of cities. Depending on the season, darkness begins at 6 p.m. and sets in very quickly without long periods of twilight.
Even if petty crime turns out to be very low despite the precarious poverty situation, activities without escort should be avoided in lonely city districts and in the entire city area when it is dark.
1 CFA (Communauté Financiaire Africaine) Franc * = 100 Centimes. Currency abbreviation: CFA Fr, XOF (ISO code). Banknotes are in circulation to the value of 10,000, 5000, 2000, 1000 CFA Fr. Coins are available in denominations of 500, 250, 200, 100, 50, 25, 5 and 1 CFA Fr.
Note: [*] The CFA Franc (XOF) is issued by the Banque des Etats de l’Afrique de l’Ouest (BCEAO, State Bank of West African States) and used by the 8 members of the African Economic and Monetary Union (UEMOA) Benin, Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Guinea-Bissau, Mali, Niger, Senegal and Togo. The CFA Franc (XAF) issued by the Banque des Etats de l’Afrique Centrale (BEAC, State Bank of the Central African States) is not legal tender in Niger. The CFA Franc is pegged to the Euro.
Visa, MasterCard and Diners Club are accepted to a very limited extent, including in some hotels and restaurants. Details from the issuer of the credit card in question.
ec / Maestro card / Sparcard
ATMs are only available in the capital Niamey, where EC cards with the Maestro symbol are accepted for withdrawals.
Attention: Travelers who pay with their bank customer card abroad and want to withdraw money should find out about the options for using their card from their bank prior to departure.
Bank opening times
- General Mon-Fri 8 a.m.-12 p.m. and 3.30 p.m.-7 p.m.Partly also on Sat 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Foreign exchange regulations
Unrestricted import of local currency, obligation to declare from 500,000 CFA Fr. Export of local currency is limited to 25,000 CFA Fr. The import and export of foreign currencies is unrestricted, no declaration obligation.
It is recommended that you bring euros with you, which can be changed at the airport as well as in larger banks and hotels. US $ can also be exchanged in exchange offices and in larger banks.