Ethiopia Transportation

  • The rivers don't always have bridges
    The rivers don't always have bridges
    by GrumpyDiver
  • Gondar to Axum
    Gondar to Axum
    by lotharscheer
  • Gondar to Axum
    Gondar to Axum
    by lotharscheer

Ethiopia Transportation

  • Driving in Ethiopia

    Driving in Ethiopia is not a great experience, and while the parts of the country north of Adidis Ababa can be accessed by normal vehicles, including mini-buses, some of the more southern destinations require travel in convoys using a 4x4 (Toyota Land Cruisers are the most comment and best way to do this).There are many road hazards, over and above...

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  • Car Rentals - Nicely said, you can't

    Ethiopia has not signed any of the UN Conventions on Road Traffic, so it does not recognize the International Driver's Permit (IDP). This means one needs an Ethiopian Driver's Licence to drive and rent a vehicle there.

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  • Ethiopian Airlines

    We just did a trip to Ethiopia and used Ethiopian Airlines for the first time. We were very pleased with the service, and were lucky enough to fly on one of their new 787 Dreamliners. The main advantage of flying in this type of aircraft is that they pressurize it to an altitude of 6000 ft, rather than the more usual 8000 ft on all other airliners....

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  • Bus travel durations

    Examples for travel durations between Ethiopian cities: Addis Ababa - Arba Minch: 7-10 hoursAddis Ababa - Awassa: 4-6 hoursAddis Ababa - Bahir Dar: roughly one day/ 3/4 dayAddis Ababa - Harar: night bus (a normal bus)Bahir Dar - Gondar: 4 hours by minibusGondar - Lalibela: 2 days in 2008, I do not know if that has changed (I decided that was to...

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  • Tour company

    We used a company called Senait Ethiopia to travel around northern Ethiopia. Just the two of us and a driver in a minibus...lots of room. Our driver just couldn't have been more helpful and accomodating. It was a bit of an endurance test because of the road surfaces and if you're looking for history, go straight to Lalibella and forget the rest,...

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  • Ethiopian Airlines

    Ethiopian Airlines was our best international option because it had direct flights Paris – Adis Abbeba at a very interesting prices. Hélas, when we finally decided to go to Ethiopia these tickets were all sold out. Once in Ethiopia and talking to other visitors we found out that Ethiopian Airlines had more advantages than we thought: if you choose...

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  • Buses

    Big buses cover the longest distances and main destinations. There are not a lot, maybe one or two per day per destination and they leave early in the morning, by 6.00 am, so you need to arrive even earlier to get a place. Buses only leave when they are more or less full (a book with you is a good idea for the waiting) and there are few or no stops...

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  • Traveling in Ethiopia

    Hi there,Please read the information under here hoping that my answers would suffice your travel plan. Before making a choice for air or surface transport from Addis Ababa to Jimma, I want to raise some points which need consideration. They are:Purpose of travel, No. of days staying,Traveling alone or in groups and Quality of ServiceBased on these...

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  • DRIVING YOURSELF

    If you want to drive yourself in Ethiopia, there are a few things you need to know. First, you have to swap your National (or State) driving licence for an Ethiopian one and pay a fee of about $2. You can get your original licence back when you leave Ethiopia. Go to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Yohanis Street (tel. 0115 506561)to get an...

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  • Bajaj

    The convenient tricycles, called “bajaj”, can be found anywhere in the cities and towns except for Addis Ababa. They are ridiculously cheap. It is usually 1-2 birr a person and sometimes go up to 5-10 if you carry your luggage. Most of the times they ask for many times more if they see “feretzi”, as they call us, the tourists, but you should...

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  • Buses

    Transportation is not easy yet in Ethiopia. The regular buses take a lot of time for a few kilometers, make a lot of stops and are usually packed with local people and their bulky bundles which can contain anything... They put them anywhere they can find space in the bus even under your legs. The aisles are never free and they all have to jump over...

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  • Sky Bus , Salam Bus

    Sky bus is the best bus company in Ethiopia. It is considered to be the fastest and this is true. Locals complain that they cause a lot of accidents in the countryside roads where a lot of people walk for long distances. They are the most luxurious in Ethiopia and the most expensive, too. Although they would assure you there is a bathroom in the...

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  • Toyota 4W drive

    We booked our Omo valey tour with Abbeba tours company. Our driver and guide was Getachi very responsible yuong guy,that treat of all our necessities.

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  • KLM

    FLY KLM TO GET HERE!Why I like KLM:• Always polite, friendly flight crews that seem to enjoy working with each other• Fantastic booking website where you can search for flight 1 month at a glance!• Great prices on long haul flights• Free drinks! Just ask for more• Comfortable planes• Excellent in-flight entertainment (pictured)• Good food...

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  • Ethiopian Airlines

    Ethiopian Airlines is one of the best African airlines, with a good traffic network within Africa and good connections.

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  • Ethiopian Air

    Ethiopian air is the only choice for dometic flights. Cheaper and much faster than driving, it is silly not to consider taking a flight or two.Flights cost around £35 one way. A flight from Addis to Gonder takes just under an hour, saving up to 9 hours if you drive.The airline is rated in the top safety bracket by the USA, so feel safe. A mix of...

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  • Ethiopian Airlines!!!!!!

    For those who doesn t want to travel aroud Ethiopia by land , you could go by land!! It's faster and cheap under 900 usd for going around the country..

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  • Tranveling around Ethiopia

    1. there is some ways to travel around you could travel by bus,bike,privite taxis,taxis and e.t.c.you could also travel around by renting a car.when you rent a van you must get someone drive it for you but i wouldn't rent a vechical unless you are staying in Addis for while.2. watch out for taxi driver who takes advantage of you.(charging you...

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  • Bus

    Bus is a cheap way to get around in Ethiopia but it can also be tough. I took a bus from Lalibela to Addis Ababa and it took two days. The bus was full of chicken and the fact that Ethiopians didn't wanna have the windows open, it was quite difficult to breathe. The leg room is also little. Do not sit in the middle or your legs will feel numb!

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  • TUK TUK's

    TUK TUK's are motorcycles that have been modified for up to 6 people to ride on the back. Yes, that’s the driver and 6 people. I saw these all over Bahr Dar and they were cheaper and more fun to ride than a regular taxi. It’s a great way to enjoy the sunshine and putter along.

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  • Minibus

    We took a minibus twice, once from Addis Ababa to Bahir Dar and another time from Addis Ababa to Harar. We paid 120 Birr for Addis Ababa to Bahir Dar, they picked us at 3.30am and arrived at 4pm. The ride from Addis Ababa to Harar costed 100 Birr, they picked us at 7pm and arrived at 5am, the road was very good that we slept the whole time....

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  • ETHIOPIAN AIRLINES

    FLY ETHIOPIAN! Ethiopian is probably the best African based airline. For long haul they have modern and comfortable planes. Their short haul flights use older small planes and you get a basic service. What makes them great is that they have an extensive destination network within Ethiopia and all across Africa. You can reserve a seat without a...

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  • Driving

    This should probably go in the warnings and danger tips box but I don't like giving people a reason not to go somewhere which is what those tips can do. Anyway this picture was one I decided to take on my way down to Lake Awasa from Addis. It was one of about 4 I saw on my way down. The driver lived.....No disrespect to our Italian friends but I...

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  • Flying

    Unless you have alot of time, you will need to fly to get around in Ethiopia at some point.Ethiopian is the flag/sole carrier within Ethiopia for the most part. I did see a Cessna Caravan at Bole Airport but forgot what it was used for or where it went. Ethiopian is a well established carrier with a good safety record so no worries here. The fly...

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  • Take a bus Gonder-Aksum

    The road from Gonder to Aksum is the most scenic one in Ethiopia. If you plan to go this way don't fly - take a bus!! The most interesting part is between Debark and Adi Arkay, when the road goes down the enscarpment of the Simien Mountains. If you plan to hike in the Simien Mountains, please know that there is no chance to hop on the Gonder-Aksum...

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  • Use Ethiopian Arilines

    A good way to save some time is to use Ethiopian Airlines when travelling between cities particularly on the northern circuit. There are daily services Addis - Bahar Dar - Gonder - Lalibela - Aksum. Tickets cost 80-130 USD. True that the planes are small and it can get a bit rough and unpleasant at times. Take pills particularly if you plan to fly...

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  • Travel by Air

    There are alot of domestic Eithiopian airline flights if you have little time to move around. If you have pletny of time, I suggest you jump on a bus and or join a tour with good 4W jeeps or landcuisers desihgned for tourism. Ethipian touris services is becoming very sofisticated these days.

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  • Get a window seat

    When taking off and landing make sure you have a window seat , and your camera in your lap. There are great views of Addis Ababa to be got, and more especially when flying to Bahar Dar. The town on the lake is great, but my bag with camera was at the front of the plane, while I was at the back, so I missed a wonderful photo opportunity.A good...

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  • Reserving a Seat

    It might be useful to pay a small kid ETB2 at most to reserve a seat for you on the buses as boarding can be a nightmare! You'll need to wrestle each other off, even women AREN'T spared! There was this elderly lady who was shoved and it was shocking for me to see that male chivalry isn't at all common...As kids are smaller in size, it's easier for...

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  • taxis in Addis

    private taxis here have a white top and blue bottom. they are cars, trucks or buses. the trucks and buses obviously carry a bunch of people, sometimes its to one spot only but many make stops along the way, if you take a car they can cater more easily to just YOU. there is also public transportation which is a big bus that is similar to the US...

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  • Muddy roads

    If you travel in the rainy season (I did, july-september) you will have a few incidents on the road, mud on the tracks, mountains that fall and cut the road, etc... In these cases, people go out of the bus and help the truck stucked to get out. All passengers help carrying stones, we put them under the stucked truck wheels and push to get it out....

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  • The bus experience

    Travelling by bus in Ethiopia is a challenge and a real experience. Most tourists travel by plane, as it's not very expensive and definetly faster, but travelling by bus you get to know better the people and the landscapes, undoubtely.There are just 2-3 asphalted roads in Ethiopia, so travelling by bus (specially in rainy season) is slow and...

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  • Bus stops

    Travelling by bus in Ethiopia lets you enjoy the landscapes and know some local people. Long distance buses (6-12 hours) stop just once for lunch (except the 2-3 pissing stops). At those stops there is only very basic local restaurants. Expect nothing but injera there, or maybe some biscuits and water in the street stalls.In the pic you can see me...

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  • Buses "incidents"

    Taking buses in Ethiopia is a memorable experience. Something to remember, not only for the neck and back pain, but also because there is always something unique on each ride: once you get stucked in the mud and have to push the bus out, the next a cow comes on the way and gets hit, the next a tyre is broken, or maybe the engine...Anyway, after all...

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  • Taxis

    1. You can save a bit if you don't book the taxi from the airport taxi personnel. Instead, walk out of the terminal, and you'll see a row of blue taxis. The yellow or cream-colored ones are managed by agencies. These tend to be more expensive.2. Taxis are a lot cheaper if hired by the hour. Remember to negotiate before getting in. Ask around for...

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  • DON'T open the windows!!!

    Was told by the locals that Ethiopians have this paranoid presumption that exposing themselves to the wind in a moving bus will make them susceptible to bad luck, spirit possession, ill health etc.So don't attempt to open the windows unless you want to have your knuckles rapped, fingers jammed, and eyeballed at throughout your journey.It wasn't...

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  • Breaking up your journey

    Buses in Ethiopia are regulated and the drivers are not allowed to run after dark, around 7-8pm and don't be surprised if you get dumped, along with other passengers, in a god-forsaken town with no decent accommodation...It happened to me, on my way from Addis Ababa to Bahar Dar, which would be a 10-11hr journey. We started in the morning, but due...

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  • Ethiopian Airlines

    I love Ethiopian Airlines!I flew domestic from Gonder to Lalibela and to Axum then to Addis Ababa.Service was pretty good, no food on short flights but you can request for a snack or drink and they'll be very happy to provide.Ethiopian Airlines is Africa's oldest and most established airline, known for its great service and in-flight entertainment...

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  • Surviving African Public Bus Travel

    Tip #1: Bring along your earplugs. They might come in handy...Tip #2: Bring along cologne/eau de toilette. They might come in handy...Tip #3: Bring along your sense of humour. It WILL come in handy...

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  • Stock up spare diesel

    If you plan to stay in Turmi for days, do make sure the driver stock up the spare diesel and keep full wherever available.I have rented the car for 9 days (USD 100 incl driver/guide and fuel). Due to shortage of diesel, I couldn't alter my program in Turmi. I was annoyed with the driver for not advising me in advance.

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  • Confirm Your Flights Frequently And...

    While I recommend Ethiopian Air for those trying to squeeze a lot of travel in a short period of time, I do have some advice.Ordinarily I book my flights online. However, after great difficulty in booking in-country flights with a popular booking site, I called the airlines' 800 number in the US with no success. (The computer was always down - a...

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  • Itiniraries

    I was asked "how to travel in Ethiopia"... I thought I should share the general parts of the response I made:I'm planning to go back to Ethiopia myself also - maybe autumn 05 or early 2006. Will do it the following way: go with one or two friends with whom I have travelled before, will connect with people and places I have visited before and use...

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  • Mini Busses

    Mini busses either go on certain routes in the cities or cover shorter overland routes than busses do. They are faster with fixed rates (which are probably higher for Faranjis!)

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  • Busses

    Probably most people travel at least once by bus, which is an experience by it self. Busses always leave early in the morning sometimes as early as 5 am. There are no busses driving through the night. The luggage is stored on the roof and somebody will ask to get paid for the service of carrying it up there. Tickets are usually cheap!For some...

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  • Hitchhiking

    Hitchhiking is an option but not easy because not too many people speak English and often you need someone to translate. But guess what: This guy might realise the situation and become a brocker and will ask for a commission for his service.Truckers employed by the government owned companies are not allowed to take passengers. If they do and they...

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Ethiopia Hotels

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Comments (1)

  • Feb 5, 2013 at 6:44 AM

    Ethiopian Airlines Problems

    It appears that Ethiopian Airlines is having problems with its Dehavilland Dash 8 planes. Lots of mechanical problems and flight cancellations. When Ethiopian Airlines cancelled out flight to Addis from Djibouti last month on the eve of Timket, Tania O’Connor at ABETravel in Addis was able to rearrange our trip at the last minute including juggling the timing of our trek in the Simien Mountains, a trek not to be missed.

Ethiopia Transportation

Reviews and photos of Ethiopia transportation posted by real travelers and locals. The best tips for Ethiopia sightseeing.
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