Rwanda Entry Requirements
Rwanda Entry Requirements specify all the rules that a traveler wishing to visit Rwanda must meet to enter the country hassle-free. These requirements include, i.a., the list of necessary documents that must be arranged prior to the planned trip.
All travelers to Rwanda must be holders of valid passports that will not expire for at last 6 months from the date of their intended arrival in Rwanda.
Another equally important document required of most international travelers is a valid visa. According to the Rwandan visa policy, different types of visas may be applicable depending on the traveler's nationality, travel purpose as well as the planned duration of stay in the country.
Citizens of the majority of countries worldwide are eligible for Rwanda e-Visa. The electronic visa for Rwanda saves plenty of time since no embassy visits are required.
Rwanda also offers the Visa on Arrival facility. Travelers from particular countries can obtain a visa at the border. This visa option, however, means waiting in long lines, and actually, no one can be sure whether the visa will be granted or not. Whenever an applicant can apply for a visa for Rwanda before the trip, it is recommended not to leave visa formalities to the last moment.
Additionally, nationals of certain countries are required to apply for a Rwandan visa directly at an embassy. It applies to applications for a tourist visa as well as other types of visas.
All foreigners who consider working and/or living in Rwanda must contact the nearest Rwandan diplomatic mission and apply for a long-term visa there. Moreover, after their arrival, they must apply for a residence permit and/or work permit in Rwanda.
Rwanda introduced some Covid-19 restrictions amid the ongoing pandemic. Nevertheless, most of them have already been lifted. Travelers no longer need to present a coronavirus test to enter Rwanda. Post-arrival tests are not performed either.
Please remember to check the most up-to-date entry requirements before going on a trip to Rwanda.
Who can enter Rwanda?
Rwandan authorities allow entry to all international travelers regardless of their Covid-19 vaccination status.
Documents check-list for entering Rwanda
- valid passport
- Rwandan visa
- travel insurance
Testing, vaccination, and quarantine requirements
Pre-departure and post-arrival Covid-19 testing requirements are no longer in place. Travelers departing Rwanda previously also had to perform rapid antigen tests to exit the country. Now, having a Covid-19 test is no longer an exit requirement.
In some places, visitors still, however, need to submit a coronavirus test, e.g., to access most national parks. Tests can be taken at designated places. The cost of RAT is 5$ (5000 RWF), while for a PCR test, one must pay 50$ (50000 RWF).
Having a Covid-19 vaccination certificate is not mandatory to enter Rwanda. However, Rwandan citizens and residents must be fully vaccinated to access public spaces, e.g., public transport. Tourists visiting Rwanda are exempt from vaccination requirements.
To be considered fully vaccinated, one must have received two-dose Covid-19 vaccination and a booster dose (administered after 3 months from receiving the second vaccine dose).
Should a traveler be tested positive for Covid-19 during their stay in Rwanda, a 10-day self-isolation is mandatory. They will need to bear all quarantine and treatment costs.
Traveling from Rwanda
A Covid-19 test is no longer necessary to depart Rwanda by air. Nevertheless, all travelers whose final destinations require providing a valid test can obtain it at health centers and other test-designated sites at their own cost.
All Rwandan citizens or residents who are 12 years and older and are departing their country must provide a full vaccination certificate to board the flight.
Traveling to Rwanda
The Rwandan Government has lifted most travel restrictions implemented during the Covid-19 pandemic. Travelers do not need to prove their vaccination status or provide a negative test to enter Rwanda. There is no need to complete the health declaration before travel either.
All coronavirus restrictions are, however, subject to rapid change. All travelers to Rwanda should monitor all changes and travel advice to ensure smooth entry to the country.
One should also make sure that all travel documents are ready for the upcoming trip, including passport, visa, and medical insurance.
Entry Rules for Children
Since travelers to Rwanda no longer need to meet Covid-19 regulations, children are also exempt from providing vaccination certificates or negative test results to enter Rwanda.
Transit through Rwanda
Transiting passengers no longer need to complete the Passenger Locator Form before departure. They do not need to provide a negative Covid-19 test to board the flight. There are no post-arrival tests at Kigali International Airport for passengers in transit either.
If you are not leaving the airport transit zone, no transit visa is necessary. However, if you wish to leave the transit area while awaiting your connecting flight, you will need to have an appropriate entry permit obtained upon arrival in Rwanda. Contact your airlines for further information on transit visa formalities.
Rwanda visa requirements
In 2018, the Government of Rwanda implemented the electronic visa system to allow nationals of certain countries to apply for a visa entirely online. There are four different e-Visa types that eligible applicants can choose between. All four visa types can be used for tourism and business purposes.
e-Visa application means no embassy visits and no long hours spent in waiting lines. The entire application can be completed within minutes from the comfort of the applicant's home. The approved e-Visa is delivered directly to the email address.
Currently, there are over 160 different nationalities eligible for Rwanda e-Visa.
Embassy or Consular Visa
Nationals of over 40 different countries must apply for any type of visa for Rwanda, including a short tourist visa, at one of the Rwandan diplomatic missions.
Application for an embassy or consular visa requires booking an appointment much in advance of the planned trip since it may take up to several weeks to handle all the visa formalities.
List of countries whose citizens must apply for Rwandan embassy or consular visa:
- Aland Islands
- American Samoa
- British Indian Ocean Territory
- Cayman Islands
- Christmas Island
- Cocos Islands
- Cook Islands
- Falkland Islands
- Faroe Islands
- French Guiana
- French Polynesia
- Isle of Man
- New Caledonia
- Norfolk Island
- Northern Mariana Islands
- Pitcairn Islands
- Saint Barthelemy
- Saint Helena
- Saint Martin
- Saint Pierre and Miquelon
- Sint Maarten
- South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands
- Svalbard and Jan Mayen
- Turks and Caicos Islands
- Wallis and Futuna
Additionally, all foreigners who plan to visit Rwanda for longer, work there, or perform any other activities not covered by an electronic visa or VoA are also required to obtain a relevant visa or permit at the nearest Rwandan embassy or consulate.
Citizens of the following countries are allowed to enter Rwanda visa-free for different time durations:
UP TO 6 MONTHS
- South Sudan
UP TO 90 DAYS
- Central African Republic
- Côte d'Ivoire
- DR Congo
- Saint Kitts and Nevis
- São Tomé and Príncipe
- Sierra Leone
Moreover, holders of diplomatic or service category passports of the following countries are also exempt from the requirement to hold a valid visa for Rwanda:
- United Arab Emirates
In addition, Chinese nationals who hold passports endorsed 'for public affairs' are permitted to visit Rwanda visa-free for a stay of up to 90 days.
Visa On Arrival
The VoA is a type of visa that is issued at certain international airports and land border crossing points. There are more than 30 different nationalities that currently can be granted a visa upon arrival in Rwanda.
Apart from a tourism visa, they can also apply for business and conference visas issued on arrival.
Visitors eligible for the Rwandan VoA should know that it may be necessary to spend long hours standing in line for visa approval.
All those who can benefit from an online visa application are highly recommended to do so instead of leaving their visa formalities until the last moment.
Complete list of countries eligible for Rwanda VoA goes as follows:
- Brunei Darussalam
- Central African Republic
- Democratic Republic of the Congo
- Federated States of Micronesia
- Marshall Islands
- Papua New Guinea
- Saint Kitts and Nevis
- San Marino
- Sao Tome and Principe
- South Sudan
Passenger Locator Form
Following other countries' governments, the Rwandan authorities also introduced the Passenger Locator Form. Since June 2022, it is, however, no longer needed to complete the Rwandan PLF to enter the country.
According to Rwandan law, anyone on Rwandan territory must have health insurance.
Choose an appropriate international insurance policy that covers air medical transport since patients requiring more complicated treatment must be transported to Kenya or South Africa. Make also sure to take out the insurance with Covid-19 coverage.