Threat level: High
There is an overall threat of terrorism in most West African countries and as such, Guinea remains a country that could be targeted for terrorist attacks. Recent events have taken place in neighbouring countries Côte d’Ivoire and Mali as well as Burkina Faso. Exercise particular caution and remain vigilant while travelling around Guinea and surrounding countries.
The country has experienced a long standing high rate of crime. Banditry is a common issue in many areas and are often carried out by individuals dressed in police or military uniforms.
Robberies are known to occur on the routes of Mamou and Faranah. Foreign aid workers present a particularly vulnerable target in these incidents, and should take care to not travel at night. Reports of police extorting cash from foreigners or Guineans with links to foreigners have increased in recent years.
Recent security events
Gun violence is becoming increasingly common in the built up areas of Guinea. Violent muggings, theft of cars and home invasions are frequently carried out by gangs using assault rifles and other small arms. You should ensure that if you are staying in a hotel it has adequate security measures including a night time armed guard.
It is highly advised to only travel around the country if you have an armed Close Protection Officer or if you are in Guinea for business purposes, a security detail provided by your employer.
The political situation in Guinea is currently stable. However there have been some recent outbreaks of violence within and beyond the capital which have resulted in several deaths and the burning of residential and commercial properties. Avoid large public gatherings and monitor the local media as often as possible.
Police and local militia checkpoints are common in Guinea but corruption and extortion are frequent at roadblocks. Occasionally, checkpoints can be used as a disguise for armed robbery.
Banditry is at high risk to foreign travellers. The Kissidougou, Guekedou, Macenta, and Nzerekore areas have all reported an increase in armed banditry.
Petty crimes such as pick pocketing are common in many areas of Guinea, especially Conakry. Foreign travellers are thought to be vulnerable targets so be sure to take basic precautions when in crowded areas. Avoid displaying expensive jewellery and don’t travel with large sums of cash.
Guinea has steadily growing relationships with many of its West African neighbours and has participated in both diplomatic and military efforts to resolve conflicts in Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea-Bissau in previous years. Relationships between Guinea and the United States are strong, the US is a main provider of aid to Guinea.
Roads are very dangerous in Guinea. This is down to the combination of poor road conditions and the extremely erratic standards of driving. Many drivers do not have any kind of training, and most get behind the wheel as soon as they a tall enough to touch the pedals.
The months between May and October experience torrential rain and this can cause serious damage to the roads, sometimes making them impassable. Monitor the local weather regularly and expect difficulties when travelling to affected areas during these months.
Official languages: French Religion: Islam Currency: Guinean Franc
Most nationalities will require a visa advance to travel to Guinea which can be arranged through your closest Guinean Embassy. A Yellow Fever vaccination certificate will also have to be sent with any visa application. Passports must be valid for at least six months beyond the length of your stay upon your arrival to the country.
It is advised that visitors to Guinea are up-to-date with primary boosters such as MMR. It is essential that you get vaccinated against Yellow Fever as there is risk of the disease throughout the country. It is an entry requirement that you present a certificate proving your immunisation. This should be completed at least 10 days prior to departure.
It is further recommended that most travellers get Tetanus, Typhoid, Polio and Hepatitis A vaccinations. Check with your local health professional prior to travel if you are unsure.
Other health risks
There have been previous outbreaks of Ebola in Guinea. The World Health Organization declared the end of Ebola virus transmission in Guinea in June 2016 however it is advised to continue taking basic health precautions to avoid contracting the disease. Good personal hygiene and avoiding crowded areas will reduce the risk significantly.
Cholera and malaria are also present in Guinea. It is advised to take malaria prevention medication and drink only bottled water.