Foreign travel advice

Rwanda

Important COVID-19 Travel

Under current UK COVID-19 restrictions, you must stay at home. You must not travel, including abroad, unless you have a legally permitted reason to do so. It is illegal to travel abroad for holidays and other leisure purposes.

Check the rules that apply to you in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

If you intend to travel to the UK from abroad, including UK nationals returning home, you must provide evidence of a negative COVID-19 test result taken up to 3 days before departure. If you do not comply (and you do not have a valid exemption) your airline or carrier may refuse you boarding and/or you may be fined on arrival.

Before you return to the UK you must provide your journey and contact details. You must self-isolate when you enter the UK from any foreign country except Ireland, unless you have a valid exemption.

When you enter England from abroad (except Ireland), you must follow the new requirements for quarantining and taking additional COVID-19 tests. For those travelling from a country on the banned travel list you will be required to quarantine in a hotel. Different rules apply for arrivals into England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

If you are legally permitted to travel abroad, check our advice on your country of destination. Some other countries have closed borders, and may further restrict movement or bring in new rules including testing requirements with little warning.

Summary

The FCDO advises against all but essential travel to:

  • the whole of Rwanda based on the current assessment of COVID-19 risks.

From 1pm on 29 January, visitors who have been in or transited through Rwanda in the previous 10 days cannot enter England. British and Irish nationals, and third country nationals with residence rights in the UK arriving in England from Rwanda will be required to quarantine in a hotel. Different rules apply for arrivals into Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

From 1 January onwards people with residence rights include: holders of Indefinite Leave to Remain; holders of existing leave to enter or remain (i.e those with biometric Residence permits) or an entry clearance/visa that grants such leave e.g. students, workers, etc (excluding visit visas); holders of EU Settlement Scheme (“EUSS”) leave; those who have rights of entry under the Withdrawal Agreements (including returning residents with a right of residence under the EEA Regulations and EEA frontier workers); family members of EEA nationals with rights under the Withdrawal Agreement.

Travel to Rwanda is subject to entry restrictions

  • Kigali International Airport is open. Land borders remain closed except to returning Rwandan citizens and legal residents.
  • Arriving passengers must present a negative PCR taken within 72 hours prior to first departure. You will then be tested on arrival and required to quarantine at a designated hotel for 24 hours whilst awaiting the results. You will then be required to self-isolate for 7 days at home and take a PCR test at the end of this period.

  • Departing passengers must present a negative PCR test before departure.

See Entry requirements for more information before you plan to travel

Preparing for your return journey to the UK

If you’re returning to the UK from overseas, you will need to:

If your return journey to the UK transits another country, you should check whether it is subject to a travel ban or any other additional requirements. If so, contact your travel provider.

If you’re travelling to Rwanda during coronavirus, see the Coronavirus section for more information.

Check our advice on foreign travel during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and sign up for email alerts for this travel advice.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, it is more important than ever to get travel insurance and check it provides sufficient cover. See the FCDO’s guidance on foreign travel insurance.

For information about COVID-19 vaccines, see the Coronavirus page.

Rwanda is generally safe and crime levels are relatively low, but street crime does occur. There have been reports of an increase in burglary, theft and mugging in Kigali in recent months. You should take precautions with valuables and remain vigilant. See Crime

The security situation near the border with the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Burundi remains unstable, and there have been armed attacks in Rwanda’s Nyungwe Forest and Volcanoes National Parks Parks and neighbouring areas. If you’re travelling near the DRC or Burundi borders, you should be aware of the risk of attacks and Government of Rwanda security operations. Exercise caution and keep up to date with developments on the current situation, including via your tour operator, the local media and this travel advice. See Local travel

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

Although there’s no recent history of terrorism in Rwanda, attacks can’t be ruled out. See Terrorism