Last updated: 20 Sep 2021

French Guiana

About

French Guiana is home to a colourful blend of different cultural backgrounds. A native land, a land of exploration and a land of enslavement, the extraordinary history of French Guiana has left its traces in every sector of today's society. Sea fishing is popular and can be undertaken from rocks, as well as from boats. Fishing for sharks and other big fish can be done in the open sea. Devil’s Island is popular with swimmers and fishermen alike. Freshwater fishing and fly fishing are also popular. Discover nature and wildlife at the Mouragues Nature Reserve, which stretches from Roura to Régina. Enjoy yourself at the carnival. 'King Carnival' starts after Epiphany and goes on until Ash Wednesday. Iles du Salut includes the infamous Devil’s Island where political prisoners were held. Do not miss the Iracoubo Church painted entirely by hand by the famous convict Huguet.
Official Name: Guyane
Capital:  Cayenne (CAY)
Currency:  Euro (EUR)
Language:  French. Guianese Creole is widely spoken. English may also be spoken.  
Dialling code from SA:  + 594
Time Zones: UTC / GMT -3 (5 hours behind South Africa)
Public Holidays 2021: 

Jan 1; Feb 15-17; Apr 2, 5 May 1, 8, 13, 24; Jun 10; Jul 14; Aug 15; Nov 1, 11; Dec 25

Best time to go:  August – December. For festivals, January – February is the best time. 
Best for:  Ecotourism, Cultural Exploration
Plugs:  220/127 volts AC, 50Hz. European two-pin plugs are standard.
Drinking Water: Mains water in hotels and towns is safe to drink, however it is heavily chlorinated and bottled water may be preferred.  Outside of the main towns, water may be contaminated and bottled water should be used.
Health: There are adequate and well-equipped medical facilities in the main cities, however visitors are required to pay for these services. Comprehensive health insurance is recommended.
Customs: Normal social courtesies. Dress should be conservative.
Travel Tips / Warnings:  French Guiana is one of the costliest countries to visit in South America, so be sure to plan accordingly.
Duty Free: If arriving from mainland France or another EU country, travellers may import goods to the value of €1,000 without incurring customs duty.
If arriving from outside the EU, travellers may import the following goods to French Guiana without incurring customs duty:
• 200 cigarettes or 100 cigarillos or 50 cigars or 250g of tobacco.
• 1L of spirits over 22% volume and 2L of alcoholic drinks less than 22% volume.
• 4L of wine.
• 16L of beer.
• Goods to the value of €430 if arriving by air or sea and €300 if arriving by other means (reduced to €150 for children under 15).

Travel Alerts

Last updated: 09/09/2021

Entry is permitted for passengers from a limited number of countries for essential reasons that cannot be postponed.

Flight restrictions

  •  All flights arriving from Brazil are prohibited.

Entry restrictions

  • Passengers are not permitted to enter French Guiana.
  • This does not apply to the following passengers, provided they have obtained an approval for entry:
    • Nationals of a European Union member state residing in French Guiana,
    • Passengers holding a residence permit issued by French Guiana,
    • Nationals of France,
    • Passengers travelling from France, Guadeloupe and Martinique,
    • Diplomats,
    • Medical professionals,
    • Passengers travelling for the continuity of the economy of the country.
  • Passengers travelling between French Guiana and mainland France must hold proof of a compelling reason for their travel.
  • Third country nationals are only permitted to enter French Guiana for professional reason necessary for the economic continuation of the country.
    • This does not apply to nationals of France.
  • Passengers may be refused entry to French Guiana if they do not possess insurance and proof of accommodation for the duration of their stay.
    • This does not apply to passengers travelling from France, Guadeloupe or Martinique.

Form requirements

  • Passengers are not permitted to travel if they do not hold a travel declaration ("Attestation de déplacement dérogatoire") confirming they are travelling for personal, family, health, emergency or professional reasons that cannot be postponed. This travel declaration can be obtained online here.
    • This does not apply to passengers who have been fully vaccinated.
  • Passengers travelling to French Guiana from the countries below are not permitted to travel if they do not hold a sworn statement (Déclaration sur l’honneur) confirming that they do not have Covid-19. Passengers also need to confirm they are travelling for compelling reasons. This statement can be obtained online here: Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Aruba, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bermuda, Bolivia, Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba, Bouvet Island, Brazil, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Curaçao, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Falkland Islands, France, Greenland, Grenada, Guatemala, Guadeloupe, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Jamaica, Martinique, Mexico, Montserrat, Nicaragua, Panama, Peru, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Pierre and Miquelon, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Saint-Barthélemy, Saint-Martin, Sint Maarten, South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands, Turks and Caicos Islands, U.S. Virgin Islands or Venezuela.
    • This does not apply to passengers who have been fully vaccinated.

Test requirements

  • Passengers aged 12 years and older travelling from Afghanistan, Argentina, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Congo (Democratic Republic of Congo), Costa Rica, Cuba, India, Indonesia, Maldives, Mozambique, Namibia, Nepal, Oman, Pakistan, Paraguay, Russia, Seychelles, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Suriname, Tunisia, Uruguay or Zambia must hold a negative RT-PCR or Antigenic test result, for one or the other, obtained within 48 hours prior to departure.
  • Passengers aged 12 years or older travelling from other countries than Afghanistan, Argentina, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Congo (Democratic Republic of Congo), Costa Rica, Cuba, India, Indonesia, Maldives, Mozambique, Namibia, Nepal, Oman, Pakistan, Paraguay, Russia, Seychelles, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Suriname, Tunisia, Uruguay or Zambia will be refused boarding if they are not holding a result of a biological examination of virological screening (PCR test only) where the test is carried out less than 72 hours prior to boarding proving that they are free of Covid-19.
    • Passengers travelling from France can present a negative antigen test obtained within 48 hours prior to departure instead.
  • Passengers aged 12 years or older arriving from Guadeloupe or Martinique will be subject to an antigen test on arrival. Passengers who receive a positive test result must quarantine for 10 days, and passengers who receive a negative test result are required to isolate themselves for 7 days.
    • This does not apply to passengers who have been fully vaccinated.

Quarantine requirements

  • Passengers must quarantine for 14 days on arrival, unless they are holding a negative Covid-19 RT-PCR test result issued within 3 days before departure. Passengers holding this test result must quarantine for 7 days on arrival.
    • This does not apply to passengers arriving from the European Union, the Schengen Area member states or the United Kingdom, Andorra, Australia, Canada, France, French Polynesia, Georgia, Guadeloupe, Japan, Korea (South), Martinique, Monaco, Morocco, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Reunion, Rwanda, Saint-Barthélemy, Saint Pierre et Miquelon, San Marino, Thailand, Tunisia, Uruguay, Vatican or Wallis and Futuna Islands.
  • Passengers travelling from France must quarantine for 7 days on arrival. They will also be subject to testing upon arrival.
    • This does not apply to passengers who present a Covid-19 vaccination certificate demonstrating that at least 4 weeks have elapsed since the first dose of Janssen vaccine or 2 weeks have elapsed since the second dose of the Pfizer-Biontech, AstraZeneca or Moderna vaccine or since the first dose of these vaccines if the passenger holds proof that they previously have been infected with Covid-19.

Exit restrictions

  • Passengers are not permitted to travel from French Guiana unless they have a compelling reason for their travel.
    • This does not apply to passengers travelling to European Union member states, the Schengen Area member states, Andorra, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Monaco, Norway, San Marino, Switzerland or the Vatican.
  • Passengers departing French Guiana travelling to France are strongly recommended to hold a negative PCR test result carried out 3 days before departure.

This Information is intended as a Guideline.

Visa Requirements

Visas are required by South African passport holders. The type of visa to apply for is a DOM visa.

SA passport holders can apply for visas through CAPAGO.

Johannesburg: Inanda Greens Business Park, Wierda Gables Building, Block B (ground floor)
98 Albertyn Avenue, Cnr Katherine Street, Sandton Tel: 087 231 0313  Fax: (011) 783 2477

Cape Town: Ground Floor, Old Warehouse Building, Black River Park South
2 Fir Street, Observatory Tel: 087 231 0313

Durban: Unit G002 Pencarrow Office Park, 8 Pencarrow Crescent, Armstrong Avenue, St Lucia 4051
Tel: 087 231 0313

Travel Health

Compulsory:  Yellow Fever
Recommended Travel Vaccines:  Hepatitis A & B, Typhoid, Tetanus, Polio
  Malaria Risk