How is life in Buea Cameroon

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Current

The spread of COVID-19 continues to lead to restrictions in international air and travel traffic and impairment of public life.

There are currently warnings against unnecessary tourist trips to Cameroon.

Epidemiological situation

Cameroon has so far been less affected by COVID-19 than Europe, but the number of infections continues to rise. With the official figures of the Cameroonian infection statistics, it must be assumed that there is a very high number of unreported cases of infected people.

Cameroon is still classified as a risk area. The World Health Organization (WHO) provides current and detailed figures.

entry

Cameroon has closed its national borders. Entry by plane, ship or vehicle is only possible to a very limited extent. Exceptions exist for the import of supplies.

Entry to Cameroon is currently only permitted to Cameroonian nationals and foreigners with an existing right of permanent residence (“Carte de Séjour”). A negative PCR test, which must not be older than 72 hours, must be presented upon entry.

A rapid antigen test must also be carried out for all travelers upon arrival at Yaounde-Nsimalen and Douala airports. Entry (passport and customs control) can only take place unhindered if the test result is negative. If the test result is positive, travelers will be transferred to the state health authorities and it is quite possible that the person concerned will be taken to a state quarantine facility.

Visas for short-term entry to Cameroon are only issued under special conditions. The requirements for issuing visas are currently changing at very short notice. Only the Cameroonian embassy can provide binding information.

Transit and onward travel

A negative PCR test is required when leaving via the international airports in Yaoundé-Nsimalen and Douala. No negative PCR test evidence is required for departures by sea or land, or via the international airports of Maroua and Garoua.

Travel connections

International airlines (Brussels Airlines, Air France, Turkish Airlines) have severely restricted their air traffic.

Restrictions in the country

There are restrictions in the country, but most of them are not implemented in practice. Restaurants, bars and discos are open.

Most of the schools and universities are open. Hygiene concepts are only partially implemented there.

Hygiene rules

In public there is a duty to wear a face mask and to adhere to distance rules ("social distancing").

  • For your own safety, ensure that you comply with the AHA regulations and also follow the instructions of local authorities.
  • Obtain detailed and additional information from the Cameroon Ministry of Health.
  • In the event of COVID-19 symptoms or contact with infected people, contact the COVID-19 hotline 1510.
  • Note the test and quarantine requirements when entering Germany from risk areas (not transit) and contact the health department at your place of residence. The Federal Ministry of Health offers further information on compulsory testing.
  • Stays in foreign countries can currently affect the possibility of entering other countries. Therefore, find out about the current regulations on entry, transit and quarantine in the respective travel countries via the travel and safety information before starting any trip.
  • Please note our continuously updated information on COVID-19 / Coronavirus.

security

Before traveling
- to the Extreme North region
(including Lake Chad),
- in the border areas with Nigeria (including the Anglophone regions North-West and South-West),
- to Chad (each along the entire length of the border),
- to the Central African Republic.
- in the anglophonesNorth-West and South-West regions and
- to the Bakassi peninsula and the surrounding area
becomes
warned.

From travel
- to the regions of Adamaoua and North
as
- all remote areas of Cameroon
is not advised.

terrorism

In the last few years, foreigners have been kidnapped several times in the “Extreme North” region. There is still a very high risk of kidnapping there. There have been suicide attacks with numerous deaths on the border with Nigeria and in Maroua, the capital of the Extreme North region. Violent robberies and kidnappings are increasing in the north and Adamaoua regions as well as in the border areas with Nigeria and Chad.
In the Nigerian states of Borno and Adamawa on the other side of the border, the state of emergency and a travel warning apply. A travel warning also applies to the border area on the Chad side.

In the two Anglophone regions of North-West and South-West, violent clashes between security forces and separatist groups continue, resulting in deaths and injuries.

According to the orders of the Cameroonian security forces, the road between Bamenda and Bafoussam may only be used in convoy with armed escort at set times.

The border area with the Central African Republic is considered unsafe because of cross-border attacks by armed groups of the local rebels. There is also a risk of kidnapping or robbery. There is also a travel warning for the Central African Republic.

Persistent security problems exist on the Bakassi Peninsula and the surrounding area near the Nigerian border. In the entire Gulf of Guinea there are gang mischief and attacks on coastal towns, fishing cutters, oil tankers and oil platforms with hostage-taking.

There is also a risk of kidnappings in all remote areas of Cameroon.

  • Avoid the areas mentioned in the travel warning and, in particular, leave the “Extreme North” region if you are there.
  • Follow the local media for possible short-term restrictions on public life and usually pay attention to night curfews.
  • Be especially vigilant and careful throughout the country.
  • Please also note the worldwide safety information.

Domestic situation

It must be expected that there may be protests and demonstrations, especially in the cities, where violent clashes are possible. Road closures and strikes lead to delays and obstructions in travel.

Since 2012 there have been attacks by foreign armed groups (Chad, Central African Republic, Nigeria) on Cameroonian facilities (national parks, border posts).

The onward journey from Cameroon by land to neighboring countries is extremely problematic or impossible. There are travel warnings for all areas of the northern and eastern land borders, see Terrorism.

  • Read the local media and plan trips carefully.
  • Avoid demonstrations and large crowds in large areas.
  • If possible, refrain from crossing borders by land.
  • Follow the instructions of local security guards.

crime

The crime rate is high. In large cities such as Yaoundé, Douala, Ngaoundere and Bafoussam in particular, there is a high level of street crime with armed robberies and thefts. There is a high risk of kidnapping in the northern parts of the country, see terrorism.

Experience shows that the number of thefts and robberies increases significantly before public holidays, especially in the run-up to Christmas. The snatch of bags is common, and resistance can be fatal due to the willingness to use violence. Especially after dark, the dangers are even higher.
Petty crimes such as theft are particularly common on trains, buses and taxis. In the past, violent robberies have occurred in particular in taxis that have not been booked in advance but have been stopped on the street. There is a particular risk of armed robberies with shared taxis, which could result in injuries to the victims.

Around Bertua on the connecting road between Cameroon and the Central African Republic, the number of criminal attacks with armed violence, especially against motorcycle taxis - drivers and passengers - has increased significantly, and there have been several deaths. Bertua and Mandjou have been banned from motorbikes at night until further notice.

False security guards and other attempts at fraud, including on the Internet, are widespread in Cameroon.

At inanimate stretches of the beaches of popular seaside resorts and in the region around Melong, tourists who were traveling alone or in pairs and with luggage were in several cases robbed during the day.

  • Be especially careful in public places, when visiting international institutions and at exposed tourist sights.
  • Be particularly vigilant in large crowds such as at train stations, on public transport and on beaches, and watch out for your valuables.
  • Avoid conspicuous valuables or jewelry, especially in larger cities and in the holiday resorts frequented by foreign tourists.
  • Take only the cash you need for the day with you and divide it into different pockets along the way.
  • After dark, avoid walking and unfamiliar neighborhoods, stay on well-lit streets.
  • In the event of a robbery, do not resist and remain calm.
  • Keep money, ID, driver's license, air tickets and other important documents safe and only carry a copy of your passport with you.
  • Do not stop taxis on the street, but order them through your hotel, for example.
  • Consider hiring a trusted driver for the entire time of your stay.
  • Always keep doors and windows locked and locked, especially at night.
  • Check with security officers of the police and gendarmerie the authenticity by means of an ID card and contact the German embassy if necessary.
  • Be skeptical about unfamiliar e-mails, profit notifications, offers and requests for help from alleged acquaintances. Do not disclose any data about yourself; if necessary, make sure yourself personally or contact the police.

Nature and climate

Mount Cameroon is an active volcano. Lighter earthquakes are possible in its vicinity at any time. Toxic gases can escape from the crater lakes Lac Nyos and Monoum and possibly also from other lakes and lead to death within a few minutes.

There is a tropical climate. The southern third belongs to the tropical rainforest belt, the north has a steppe climate with a short rainy season and large temperature fluctuations. In between there is a zone with a savannah climate and a longer rainy season.

During the rainy season from March to November, heavy rains can occur, which quickly lead to floods and landslides and make roads or river crossings impassable.

  • Always observe prohibitions, signs and warnings as well as the instructions of local authorities.
  • Familiarize yourself with volcano behavior guidelines. These are provided by the fact sheets of the German Research Center for Geosciences.

Travel info

Infrastructure / traffic

Traffic routes may be impaired due to measures related to COVID-19 containment, see Current.

Compared to other African countries, Cameroon has a large road network, but its maintenance is poor. On December 27, 2020 alone, more than 50 people were killed in three different car accidents and almost 100 were injured, some very seriously. The intercity buses in particular are in very poor condition. It is strongly advised not to use these intercity buses. In general, however, any other public transport or rental car should also be critically examined for the technical condition and driving ability of the driver.

The tourist infrastructure, however, does not have a particularly high standard. There is an unreliable rail link for trips to Ngaoundéré. From there, travelers can travel further north by car. Outside the larger cities, so-called mototaxis (motorcycles) replace car taxis.

Overnight accommodation outside the cities is limited and of a simple standard.
Due to technical defects in vehicles and the irresponsible behavior of many drivers, especially trucks, there is a much higher risk of accidents than in Europe.

Long-lasting police checks are to be expected, especially when driving a car. Sometimes "motivation money" is required.

Due to the generally very high risk of accidents in road traffic, a defensive driving style is indicated and seat belts should be worn.

  • Be extra careful in traffic and drive defensively.
  • If possible, take a driver.
  • Refrain from driving overland in the dark.
  • Be patient with controls.

Driver's license

The international driving license is required and is only valid in conjunction with the national German driving license.

LGBTIQ

According to Article 347 of the Criminal Code, homosexuality is punishable by imprisonment from six months to five years. In practice, homosexuality is not systematically prosecuted, but prosecuted in individual cases. Foreigners have also faced criminal prosecution. Non-heterosexual behavior is strongly taboo and outlawed in society. There have been violent attacks on LGBTIQ people in the past.

Legal specifics

Photography is prohibited for:

Photography is prohibited for official buildings such as ministries and the presidential palace in Yaoundé, airports, ports, military facilities or police stations and telecommunications systems. The ban is extended to many other things.
It is also forbidden to insult the President and his family.

In the case of police and gendarmerie controls, it sometimes remains unclear on what legal basis certain documents or behavior are required.

  • Ask permission before taking photos, even if you plan to take photos of people.
  • If you are detained, you have the right to contact the German embassy in Yaoundé.

Money / credit cards

The national currency is the CFA franc (Equatorial XAF). Withdrawing cash from ATMs and paying with credit cards are only possible in very rare cases in expensive hotels. It is advisable to take cash in euros with you.

Entry and customs

Entry and transit regulations may currently differ due to measures to contain COVID-19, see Current.

Entry and import regulations for German citizens can change at short notice without notifying the Foreign Office beforehand. You can only obtain legally binding information and / or information that goes beyond this information on the entry and customs regulations for importing goods directly from the representatives of your destination country.
You can find the customs regulations for Germany on the website of German customs and via the “Customs and Travel” app, or you can inquire about them by telephone.

Travel documents

Entry is possible for German citizens with the following documents:

  • Passport: Yes
  • Temporary passport: Yes
  • Identity card: No
  • Provisional identity card: No
  • Children's passport: Yes

Comments / minimum remaining validity:
Travel documents must be valid for at least six months at the time the visa is applied for and have at least one free page.

If you are arriving by plane, you must be able to present a return or onward ticket. Airports with international flight connections to and from Europe are Duala and Yaounde (Nsimalen).
The border and customs controls are more time-consuming compared to Europe.

The requirements of individual airlines for the documents to be carried by their passengers differ in part from the state regulations.

  • If necessary, please inquire with your airline before departure.

visa

German citizens need a visa to enter the country, which must be applied for in good time at the Cameroonian embassy in Berlin or at one of the two Cameroonian honorary consuls in Germany.

A visa extension in the country is not provided for by law. It is therefore advisable to enter Cameroon on a visa that is valid for the entire duration of your stay.

Minors

For minors, an original or a certified copy of the birth certificate showing the parents of the child should be carried with them.
When entering and leaving the country with only one parent or adults other than the parents, it is advisable to present a certified power of attorney from the other parent or legal guardian. If the parents resulting from the birth certificate do not have custody, the judicial custody order or other official proof of custody should also be carried in the original or a certified copy. All documents should be submitted in French, or alternatively in English.

Minors traveling alone who are transported as “unaccompanied minors (UNMR)” by commercial airlines should be picked up by the person responsible for parental custody or by an authorized person upon arrival in Cameroon.

Import regulations

There is no limit to the import and export of foreign currency, but a declaration must be made.
The import of the national currency is permitted up to an amount of 20,000 CFA francs, the export up to an amount of 25,000 CFA francs and unlimited when traveling to a country belonging to the franc zone.

Daily necessities may be imported. Foreign currencies with an equivalent value of 1 million FCFA (approx. 1,524.50 EUR) must be declared upon entry. The import of (hunting) weapons must be applied for via the Cameroonian embassy in Berlin or one of the two honorary consuls in Essen or Hanau.

Ancient works of art are not allowed to be exported. When leaving with wood carvings, a tax is required (10% of the purchase price).

Import of a vehicle

Entry by land with your own vehicle is possible. You must have an international driver's license, an international registration, the green insurance card and a "Carnet de Passage". This is available from the ADAC or the AvD automobile club. Both petrol and diesel vehicles may be imported into Cameroon, but right-hand drive cars are not allowed.

Pets

An international vaccination certificate is required when importing dogs and cats. A veterinary certificate in French translation is also required, stating that the animal has been vaccinated against rabies, examined prior to vaccination and found overall healthy; the rabies vaccination must be at least 20 days old.

When dogs and cats are exported, a local veterinarian can carry out the Titabes examinations and vaccinations required for the EU.

health

Current

The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared the disease COVID-19, which is triggered by the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, a pandemic.

  • Please note the continuously updated information on COVID-19 and the information in the COVID-19 leaflet on the WHO, RKI and BZgA websites.
  • Please note that malaria is far more common than COVID-19. Please take a malaria test if you have a fever.

measles

In January 2019, WHO declared delaying or skipping vaccinations as a threat to global health. In particular, the lack of vaccination against measles poses a high risk when the number of cases increases internationally.

  • As part of your travel preparations, check your and your children's vaccination protection against measles and have this supplemented if necessary.

Vaccination protection

A yellow fever vaccination is mandatory for all travelers from the age of 12 months upon entry and is also medically advisable.
Travelers under 4 weeks of travel time should have full poliomyelitis vaccination with booster vaccinations every 10 years; Residents and long-term travelers over 4 weeks are recommended to have a booster vaccination 4 weeks to 12 months before departure, see information sheet on poliomyelitis.

  • Make sure that you and your children have the standard vaccinations according to the vaccination calendar of the Robert Koch Institute up to date.
  • Vaccinations against hepatitis A and polio are recommended as travel vaccinations, and for long-term stays or special exposure also against hepatitis B, typhoid, rabies and meningococcal disease (ACWY).
  • Please note the instructions for use and help for the indication in the travel vaccination recommendations leaflet.
  • The DTG offers up-to-date, detailed travel vaccination recommendations for specialist groups.

Zika virus infection

The predominantly diurnal AedesMosquito-borne infection with Zika viruses can lead to malformations in children during pregnancy and neurological complications in adults.

Dengue fever

Dengue viruses become diurnal, especially in coastal regions Aedes- Mosquitoes transmitted. Although cases are repeatedly diagnosed in the capital, Yaounde, the actual infections have most likely taken place on the coast so far. The disease is usually accompanied by fever, skin rash and pronounced pain in the limbs. In rare cases, especially in children, serious complications, including possible death, occur. Overall, however, complications for travelers are rare. There is neither a vaccination nor chemoprophylaxis nor a specific therapy against dengue fever, see also information sheet on dengue fever.

  • To avoid dengue fever, protect yourself consistently against mosquito bites as part of exposure prophylaxis, especially during the day.

malaria

Malaria is caused by crepuscular and nocturnal anopheles- Mosquitoes transmitted. If left untreated, the dangerous one is particularly dangerous Malaria tropica often fatal in non-immune Europeans. The disease can break out weeks to months after your stay in the risk area, see also the Malaria leaflet.

  • If you develop a fever during or even months after a corresponding trip, see the doctor as soon as possible and inform him about your stay in a malaria area.

There is a high risk of malaria all year round in the entire country including the cities, see Standing Committee on Travel Medicine (StAR) of the DTG.

To avoid malaria, protect yourself consistently against insect bites as part of exposure prophylaxis. You should pay particular attention to the following points:

  • Wear light-colored clothing that covers the body (long trousers, long shirts).
  • Repeatedly apply insect repellent to all exposed parts of the body, during the day (dengue) as well as in the evening and at night (malaria).
  • If necessary, sleep under an impregnated mosquito net.

Depending on the travel profile, in addition to the necessary exposure prophylaxis, chemoprophylaxis (tablet intake) is also useful. Various prescription drugs (e.g. atovaquone proguanil, doxycycline, mefloquine) are available on the German market for this purpose.

  • Discuss the choice of medication and its personal adjustment as well as side effects or intolerance to other medication with a tropical medicine or travel medicine specialist before taking it.
  • It is recommended that you bring sufficient supplies with you.

HIV / AIDS

The HIV prevalence in the population is around 4% nationwide, and much higher in risk groups. There is always a high risk of HIV transmission through sexual contact, drug use (unclean syringes or cannulas) and blood transfusions.

  • Always use condoms, especially on casual acquaintances.

Diarrheal diseases

Diarrheal illnesses are common travel illnesses, see also the information sheet on diarrheal illnesses. However, through appropriate food and drinking water hygiene, most diarrheal diseases and also cholera (see below) can be avoided. Therefore, to protect your health, please observe the following basic information:

  • Only drink water of safe origin, never tap water. A previously opened bottle can be identified more easily by purchasing carbonated bottled water.
  • If possible, use drinking water to wash dishes and brush your teeth when you are out and about.
  • If bottled water is not available, use filtered, disinfected, or boiled water.
  • Cook or peel food yourself.
  • Make sure you keep flies away from your food.
  • Wash your hands with soap as often as possible, but always before preparing and eating.
  • If possible, disinfect your hands with liquid disinfectant.

cholera

Cases of cholera occur regularly across the country, but particularly in the north and in Douala. There are also repeated major epidemics. Cholera is transmitted through insufficiently treated drinking water or raw food and can therefore be avoided through appropriate food and drinking water hygiene. Only a small part of the people infected with cholera get sick and of these in turn the majority with a comparatively mild course. The indication for a cholera vaccination is only given very rarely, usually only in the case of special exposures such as