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My company is sending me Abidjan I have a lot of concerns.

Corpus Christi...
2 posts
My company is sending me Abidjan I have a lot of concerns.

I work in the Oilfield and my company is sending me to Abijan Cote D'ivoire to pick up a boat and return it to the U.S. I have heard good and bad story's about Africa but I am only 19 and this is my first time going over sea's. My biggest concern is the Ebola outbreak in Sierra Leone, Guinea, and Liberia. Liberia borders Cote D'ivoire and I'm not sure if Cote D'ivoire has had any reported cases. But going through customs Is another issue, I heard you could have items taken from you like a laptop, or money, or over the counter medicine. What should I and what should I not pack. And just how safe is Abidjan in general? Thank you for your help.

Stockholm, Sweden
Destination Expert
for Morocco
Level Contributor
10,856 posts
171 reviews
1. Re: My company is sending me Abidjan I have a lot of concerns.

About Ebola - it is OK, not one case is reported on Cote Ivory.

And about the customs - who told for you about such story? I was there in January and was impressed of how effective and good they were. No problems at all we had.

It is safe there also, we rented a car and traveled alone through the whole country, to Grand Bassam and then Yamoussoukro, Daloa etc without some problems with someone.

Abidjan is safe but of course, you would avoid to go to small streets, be careful with your wallet etc, don't go out after darkness, take in such case taxi.

It is warm there so pack not so warm clothes of course. Wet period can be now but it is warm so you will be only wet.

Corpus Christi...
2 posts
2. Re: My company is sending me Abidjan I have a lot of concerns.

Thank you very much for the help!

Stockholm, Sweden
Destination Expert
for Morocco
Level Contributor
10,856 posts
171 reviews
3. Re: My company is sending me Abidjan I have a lot of concerns.

enjoy there, it is nice there and the people are friendly and nice also

Boston...
Level Contributor
2 posts
285 reviews
4. Re: My company is sending me Abidjan I have a lot of concerns.

100% agree with Khamlia. You should be fine going through customs. I also have not heard nor have I seen anyone getting things taken from them. All standard items are allowed. It is very professional. You will likely get screened for Ebola with a questionnaire. The Ivoirians are taking this very seriously.

Getting around in and around Abidjan is safe. Keep common sense about you, smile and learn a few French words.

Have the phone number and general location of the US Embassy on you in case you need assistance. The number is +225 2249 4000 and it is in Riviera Golf Cocody.

Katy, Texas
1 post
5. Re: My company is sending me Abidjan I have a lot of concerns.

My husband is Ivorian and we stayed in Abidjan for one month last summer. Abidjan is pretty safe. You will see things there that you would never see in the States...like soldiers walking around with MK-47s and children (5 years old and younger) begging in the streets and major highway intersections. Besides it being a *huge* culture shock, though, I never felt like my life was in danger (or even close to it). I also brought my three children with me (ages 15, 8 and 1.5 at the time) and was never scared. Of course, I had my husband with me and this is his home country, so he obviously knew his way around. The one thing I can say is that it will be difficult for you there if you don't speak French. There are few people there who can speak English, and they will not "cater" to you just because you are American. Also, do not depend on being able to use your credit cards everywhere like in the US. Most establishments do not take credit cards there, and you have to have cash (CFA - the local currency). If you stay at a nice hotel, though, and don't leave too much other than to conduct business, you should be fine. One word of caution, though - if you are not black, be prepared to stand out like a sore thumb. My oldest daughter and I are Caucasian, and we were literally the only white people we saw the entire time we were in Abidjan. I'm not saying this to sound racist, only to forewarn you that you will be a "target" for the beggers if you are not black. Anyone who is fair-skinned in their country is viewed as "rich" and will be pursued relentlessly by street beggers. Luckily, I had my husband with me and he "shooed" them away when they started to really mob us.

Finally, I would not spend too much time worrying about the Ebola scare. It makes sense to be cautious, but you honestly have as much of a risk contracting it in New York or Paris as you do in Abidjan right now. Although Liberia borders Cote D'Ivoire, the distance between the border and Abidjan is hundreds of miles (through dense jungle and harsh terrain). The only people transmitting the disease will be those who are traveling by airplane. That is where you face your biggest rick, and it's really not much of one. The people who can afford to travel by airplane in these countries are not the ones that live in the village and are contracting the virus. Out of about 1,700 cases, only 2 (to date) have been reported to make it across borders and into highly populated areas previously unaffected by the virus. Your odds are very good that you will be safe, but IMO it wouldn't hurt to ask for a "bonus" from your employer for putting you into a potential risky situation!

Stockholm, Sweden
Destination Expert
for Morocco
Level Contributor
10,856 posts
171 reviews
6. Re: My company is sending me Abidjan I have a lot of concerns.

About the language, we cannot one word in French, but anyway we managed the whole without problem. Sometimes it was difficult to communicate but at end we understood each other.

7. Re: My company is sending me Abidjan I have a lot of concerns.

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