Ethiopian are one of the best airlines in Africa, safe and reliable. Not the cheapest option to fly there from Europe. But if you plan to take internal flights (only available with Ethiopian) they offer good discounts if you already booked with them the international flight.
So ask your local handler about the prices of combined flights (TO Ethiopia and AROUND the country). I booked only a Lalibela-Addis flight from Spain and it happened to be the same price when I asked about prices in Addis, so you better book in advance if you wanna take internal flight, some might be full.
Once there is easy to change dates (no charge) or even cancel the flights.
The Bole international Airport has a national flights building too. It is a rather modern medium size airport.
Tourist visas are available at arrival. You must have a 20 USD NOTE ready for the visa payment. They don't accept another currency, but you can go to the nearest bank to change if you need to.
To go to the city centre you can take a blue taxi (about 40-50 birr, 4-5 USD) or take a minibus (about 15Birr, 1,5 USD). To take the minibuses, go out of the airport, avoid the taxi drivers and look for the samll blue vans. Ask the driver if they go to PIAZZA or MESKEL square, the 2 main destinations. If you are not really sure, take a taxi.
There are no minibuses in the national arrivals building, so if you come from an ethiopian city and want to take a minibus go first to the international arrivals building.
Just like in other places in Africa, the good ol' minibuses (all of them are blue) are here in Addis. It might be difficult to get to exactly where you want to go if you don't speak Ahmaric, but hey...give it a shot if you want. A guy will lean out the window and yell where the minibus is going to. So if you can understand him or just feel like being adventurous, go for it. The prices are 60 cents for standard rides and 1.20 birr for trips farther out.
A taxi from the airport into the city should cost you 60 birr, unless it is really out of the way in which case it should cost you no more than 100 birr. The pricing will be the same for going to the airport as well.
Ethiopian Airlines provides service to domestic airports in Ethiopia and its the only airline to do so. From Addis you can fly to aksum, Arba Minch, Dire Dawa, Bahar Dar, Gonder and Lalibela. Prices for foreign national are higher than for the locals but if u have a Ethiopian residence permit than you pay price as a local.
Arrange, and pay for, a taxi before you leave the airport, after customs. The price is generally fixed, but you can ask around different companies. They are safe, fast and reliable, even in the middle of the night, to my uncertain knowledge
NTO (National Tour Operations) are a very reasonably priced car hire company for all vehicles from Sedans to 4x4 and busses. They have a desk at the airport and another office at the Hilton. On 4 Nov '05 I was quoted the following rate on a Mercedes with driver: US$68/day incl. 75km/day free thereafter US$0.60/km. Overtime starts at 16h00 and is charged at US$2.60/hour. Salomon is a very friendly guy, when I told him we'd be arriving the night before but only wanted the car from the next day, he offered free transport from the airport to the Sheraton (I thanked him for this but the Sheraton offers a free airport shuttle) Salomon can be called directly on his mobile +251 911 639 381. Tell him you got the number from here he should be nicely suprised.
If you're having trouble with the dialling code changes in Ethiopia goto this website where you can input the old number and it will generate the new number for you: http://www.nazret.com/converter/
I flew into Addis Ababa with Ethiopian Airways from Lagos, Nigeria. The plane was in perfect shape. There was just a minor incident with a passenger lady – I felt like Adam Sandler in the movie "Anger Management".
Anyway, the airport is modern and clean and there are no real cues. There is even an Internet Café which costs about US$1 per 10 minutes or so. I was very impressed! And by the way, I advise you to take a hotel shuttle bus to the hotel. It worked perfectly fine for me.
to visit diferent parts of the country would recommend a professional guide to take you around
my guide Tilahun was absoltu good, reliable and good friend
The buses in addis Ababa are not for foreigners. You don't understand where they are going since the front boards are written in ethiopian letters, or with only a number.
VISA ON ARRIVAL IS AVAILABLE AT BOLE INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT !
Just to make sure, check your nationality on the Project Visa website:
I ordered a hotel shuttle at the airport and was positively surprised by the road system. Traffic flows freely and organized. The roads are well maintained.
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