Entebbe International Airport, which lies 40km from the capital Kampala, is serviced by a number of international airlines. Uganda can also be reached overland from Kenya, Rwanda and Tanzania.
Customs and immigration officials are polite and efficient, and a visa (or those who require one), can be purchased at Ugandan Missions abroad, or on the spot at Entebbe International Airport or at any overland border.
Single Entry – US $50. A passport (minimum 6 month validity) is mandatory, and visa requirements should be checked before you travel.
Foreign exchange and ATM facilities are available at the airport, which is also serviced by shops and restaurants.
A certificate of yellow fever vaccination is required. All visitors should take malaria prophylactic drugs.
Please visit your doctor for all the appropriate anti malarial and vaccinations required for Uganda.
It is strongly advised to drink bottled rather than tap water.
The Ugandan shilling (USh) is a relatively stable currency. Cash can be changed easily at major banks and foreign exchange (forex) bureaus. The forex bureaus offer slightly better exchange rates than the banks. At both banks and forex bureaus, small US dollar bills attract a much lower exchange rate than do US$50 and US$100 notes, and the rate for travellers cheques is about 2% lower than they are for cash. Please only bring USD Dollars that were issued in the year 2004 or higher.
Exchange rates in Kampala are up to 15% better than is the case elsewhere in the country, so stock up on shillings in the capital.
For credit – card cash advances, the only realistic option is Barclays Bank in Kampala, which offers advances in US dollars or Uganda shillings.
Bargaining is necessary in informal transactions such as those at markets and roadside stalls, but not in shops that display fixed prices.
Educated Ugandans are generally fluent in English, which is the official language. Of 30-plus different indigenous languages, Luganda serves as something of a lingua franca.
When to Visit
Uganda can be visited at any time, though mountain hikes, gorilla tracking and other forest walks are more challenging during the rains, which generally peak over mid-September to November and March to May.
What to wear
Daytime temperatures are generally warm to hot, so bring lots of light clothing. Evenings are cooler, especially at high altitudes, so carry a couple of light sweaters too. Those who intend to hike on the mountains will be exposed to alpine temperatures and should pack accordingly. Solid walking shoes and sturdy clothing are ideal for forest walks. Don’t forget to bring a hat, sunglasses and a waterproof jacket.
What to Bring
To make the most of the game reserves and national parks, carry binoculars and field guides. Photographers will need a zoom lens for wildlife (70-300 or similar). Print film and developing is available in Kampala. Toiletries and other essentials can be bought in the cities.
Driving is on the left side. Visitors without experience of African roads are advised to organise a vehicle with a driver rather than self-drive.
It is normal to tip 5-10% at tourist-oriented restaurants. Guides and drivers should always be tipped.
We highly recommend for you to pick up a magazine named The Eye, as soon as you land. It is a monthly updated magazine offering you the best information everything you need, or may need to know. (view ‘The Eye’ website). The Bradt Travel Guide is one the most detailed guidebooks in print. Other guidebooks are produced by Lonely Planet, Footprint Guides and Spectrum Guides. The Uganda Tourist Board website (Visit Uganda) contains information about all tourist attractions and protected areas.