Guinea-Bissau — Travel Tips
Portuguese is the official language of Guinea-Bissau, but Creole is also widely spoken by the locals. Other languages like Balanta, Fula, Pepel, Bijago, and Mandinka are also used along with foreign tongues like French and English, although the last two are mainly spoken by expats and people coming from neighboring African countries like Senegal, Guinea Conakry, Nigeria, Gambia, and Mauritania.
CFA or the Communauté Financiére Africaine franc is the official currency of Guinea-Bissau, and notes come in denominations of XOF 10,000, 5,000, 2,500, 1,000, and 500. There are ATMs in the capital and other major cities and travelers’ checks are rarely accepted. Leave your credit cards at home, as they are of very limited use in the capital and are completely useless outside of Bissau. Currency exchange facilities are on hand, though it is better to bring small denominations for easier transactions. US currency is preferred.
Electricity supply in Guinea-Bissau can sometimes be erratic, but if you must bring electronics, be sure to have an appropriate voltage converter and a plug adapter. The standard in the country is 220-240 V with sockets that are europlug and schucko-type.
The calling code for Guinea-Bissau is +245. A total of three mobile companies serve the country, all offering prepaid cell services. Calling abroad is fairly easy and there are many internet cafés in the capital. WiFi is available in some restaurants and hotels.
When entering Bissau, customs free imports are limited to a reasonable quantity of tobacco products and perfume in opened bottles, as well as two and a half liters of alcoholic beverages.
Ministerio da Industria, Turismo e Artesanato: +245-202-171 or Centro de Informacão e Turismo: +245-213-905 or +245-212-844
Consulates in Guinea Bissau
Belgian Consulate, Bissau: +245-320-1227
Chinese Consulate, Bissau: +245-203-637
Cuban Consulate, Bissau: +245-320-1291
French Consulate, Bissau: +245-257-4000
Gambian Consulate, Bissau: +245-203-928
Dutch Consulate, Bissau: +245-201-224
Palestinian Consulate, Bissau: +245-215-091
Portuguese Consulate, Bissau: +245-201-279
Senegalese Consulate, Bissau: +245-211-561
South African Consulate, Bissau: +245-665-5444
Swedish Consulate, Bissau: +245-202-822