Foreign travel advice


Important COVID-19 Exceptional Travel Advisory Notice

The Foreign & Commonwealth Office currently advises British nationals against all but essential international travel. This advice is being kept under constant review.


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Coronavirus (COVID-19): stay up to date

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) is advising British nationals against all non-essential international travel at this time. Existing advice for Mali remains in place:

The FCO advise against all travel to:

  • the provinces of Tombouctou, Kidal, Gao and Mopti
  • areas of Segou province north of the Niger river
  • within 25km of the border with Mauritania in areas west of Bafoulabé (Kayes province)
  • areas of Kayes and Koulikoro provinces north of the area between the towns of Bafoulabé and Banamba, as far as the Segou border

The FCO advise against all but essential travel to:

  • the rest of Mali, including Bamako

Terrorists are very likely to try to carry out attacks in Mali, including kidnaps. There is a heightened risk of attack in Bamako. Attacks could be indiscriminate, including in places visited by foreigners. You should be vigilant, especially in places such as hotels, restaurants, bars, nightclubs, shopping areas, markets, transport hubs, places of worship and businesses with western interests. Keep a low profile and follow the advice of local authorities. Avoid all large gatherings, including music festivals, sporting events and any public marches or demonstrations. See Terrorism

There have been recent changes in the security situation in parts of Segou province/region. See Local travel and Terrorism

During public holidays and festivals, including New Year celebrations, security measures in Mali can be heightened due to the ongoing threat posed by terrorist organisations. During such periods you should exercise increased vigilance, limit your movements and continue to avoid large gatherings. If you think a particular venue would present a good target for terrorist activities then you should consider whether you need to visit it.

A nationwide state of emergency in place since November 2015 has been extended several times, most recently in October 2019 by one year until 31 October 2020. You should expect a robust security presence including police patrols and possible police security checks on restaurants and hotels. There are likely to be more vehicle and personal security checks during this time and nobody will be exempt.

Mali held legislative elections in March and April 2020. Since 1 May, regular protests have taken place in Bamako and across the country following the Constitutional Court’s ruling on these elections. You should avoid large gatherings, remain vigilant and monitor local social media/news.

Recent public demonstrations in and around Bamako have encountered a strong police and security force presence. You should stay away from all political demonstrations and any blockades set up by the police and security forces. Maintain several days’ stock of food and water in case disturbances take place. You can monitor daily developments in English through the BBC World Service (88.9 FM in Bamako).

If you’re abroad and you need emergency help from the UK government, contact the nearest British embassy, consulate or high commission.

Consular support is severely limited in parts of Mali, especially outside Bamako. If you’re in Bamako and need urgent help from the UK Government, please call the FCO on 020 7008 1500.

Take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance before you travel.