Last updated: 27 Oct 2018

Algeria

About

Some fine resorts lie along the coast within easy reach of Algiers. Zeralda is a popular beach resort with a holiday village and a replica nomad village. The Turquoise Coast is also close by and offers rocky coves and long beaches, equipped with sports, cruise and watersports facilities. The Sidi Fredj peninsula has a marina, an open-air theatre and many amenities, including sporting facilities.

Along the coast from Oran, which is primarily a business centre and an oil depot there are a number of resorts, many with good hotels. The Sahara Desert is the most striking and also most forbidding feature of the country.

The special attraction of the holy town of Beni-Isguen, not far from Ghardaia, is its permanent auction market.
Capital:  Algiers (ALG)
Currency:  Algeria Dinar (DZD)
Language:  Arabic and Berber, but French is widely used for official transactions. English is only spoken in major tourist regions. 
Dialling code from SA:  + 213
Time Zones: UTC / GMT +1 (1 hour behind South Africa)
Public Holidays 2018: 

Jan 1; May 1; Jun 15, 16; Jul 5; Aug 22, 23; Sep 12, 20; Nov 1, 21

Side of the Road: Right
Best Time to Go: March – April and October – November. Avoid the summer months (May – September) due to the heat. March – April and October – November. Avoid the summer months (May – September) due to the heat. 
Best for: Historical sites
Plugs: 220 volts AC, 50Hz. European two-pin and Schuko plugs are standard.
Drinking Water: Mains water in hotels and towns is safe to drink. Outside of the main towns, water may be contaminated. Bottled water is available. 
Health: There are adequate and well-equipped medical facilities in the urban areas, however visitors are required to pay for these services. Comprehensive health insurance is recommended. Doctors will require cash payment regardless of whether you have health insurance. Outside of the urban areas, medical facilities are more limited. 
Customs: Algeria is a predominantly Muslim society and respect should be shown to religious customs. Women should dress more conservatively in the rural areas outside of Algiers. The drinking of alcohol is frowned upon. 
Local Offences / Laws: There are severe penalties with being associated with the black market, particularly for currency exchange and electronics.  Homosexuality is illegal. Photography of military and police personnel and installations is illegal. 
Travel Tips / Warnings: Credit cards have limited acceptance in Algeria, cash is the preferred method of payment. There are a few ATM’s in the urban area, but they are unreliable. Driving in the desert will require a permit and preparation beforehand, but is not recommended due to high incidents of kidnap.  Visits are not recommended during Ramadan.  Check the local political situation before finalising travel plans. Protests and political gatherings should be avoided. 
Duty Free: The following goods may be imported into Algeria by persons over 17 years of age without incurring customs duty:
• 200 cigarettes or 50 cigars or 100 cigarillos or 250g of tobacco.
• 1L of spirits or 2L of wine.
• 250ml of eau de toilette or 50ml of perfume.
• Goods to the value of DZD50,000
Prohibited Imports: Prohibited imports to Algeria include arms and ammunition, narcotics and counterfeit goods.
Prohibited Exports: Prohibited exports from Algeria include gold exceeding 150g in weight, firearms, ammunition and narcotics

Issuing Authorities

Embassy of the Democratic People’s Republic of Algeria
950 Arcadia Street,
Hatfield,Pretoria 0001
P O Box 57480 Arcadia 0007
Tel: +27(0) 12 3425074/5/7
Fax: +27(0) 12 3426479
E-mail: algemb.pretoria@gmail.com
http://www.embassyofalgeria-rsa.org

Consular hours: Mon, Tue Wed, Thur 09h00 - 12h00

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SA Representative

SA Embassy
Tel: + 213 2148 4418/82/89/98
Fax: +213 2148 4419
Web: www.dirco.gov.za/algiers/

 

Travel Health

Compulsory:  Yellow Fever (Dependant on Country of Origin/Stopover)
Recommended Travel Vaccines:  Hepatitis A & B, Tetanus, Polio, Rabies, Typhoid