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Mali

If you’re travelling to Mali, our travel advice and updates give you practical tips and useful information.

Security Status

  • Normal precautions
  • High degree of caution
  • Avoid non-essential travel
  • Do not travel
  • Overview
  • Safety and Security
  • Local Laws and Customs
  • Health
  • Entry requirements (visa/passport)
  • Embassy Contact

Overview

General COVID-19 Travel Advisory in Operation

For the latest update please read the General COVID-19 Travel Advisory >

Overview

Security status

Do not travel 

Latest Travel Alert

Citizens should exercise caution in any decisions about international travel, taking account of their overall health, their vaccine status, and the risk of testing positive for COVID-19 while abroad. Anyone considering travelling abroad should be aware that restrictions are subject to change at short notice, and additional restrictions may be imposed by the country of your destination, including during your visit.

We advise you to leave the country if you don’t have an essential reason to stay. If you decide to stay, against our advice, keep yourself informed of what’s going on around you by monitoring local media and staying in contact with your hotel or tour organiser. Avoid demonstrations and public gatherings which can sometimes turn confrontational.   

General Travel Advice 

On 9 January 2022, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) announced the closure of land and air borders and suspension of all non-essential commercial transactions between ECOWAS countries and Mali. Flights from Bamako to countries outside ECOWAS continue but you should check with your airline before travelling.

You should comply with any additional screening measures put in place by the authorities. Keep up to date with information from your tour operator, transport or accommodation provider on the impact on any existing travel plans.

Safety and security

There is a high risk of terrorism in Mali, including kidnapping. Attacks could be indiscriminate, including on places visited by foreigners.

You should be vigilant, be alert to announcements, monitor local media and follow the advice of the local authorities. Avoid all large gatherings, including during national day celebrations and public holidays. Large gatherings can also include music festivals, sporting events and any public marches or demonstrations. You should exercise caution during election periods and take particular care during festivities, and religious and public holiday periods.

You should expect a strong security presence including police patrols and possible police security checks on restaurants and hotels.

Violent protests have taken place regularly in Bamako, often involving clashes with the police, who may put in place roadblocks, deploy tear gas, and use small arms fire.

You can contact the emergency services in Mali by dialling:

  • Ambulance: 15
  • Fire: 17
  • Police: 18

Travel to Ireland

Safety and Security

Safety and security

Kidnapping

There is a very high threat of kidnapping in Mali, including from terrorist groups. The threat is most significant in the north but it can occur in any part of the country.

Irish nationals may be viewed by many groups as legitimate kidnapping targets, regardless of their reasons for being in Mali.

Terrorist groups active in Mali and the wider region are capable of carrying out attacks and kidnaps over long distances. Kidnapping for ransom is the primary source of finance for some terrorist groups and criminal gangs often carry out kidnapping for terrorist groups in return for financial rewards.

Be extremely vigilant and follow these basic precautions:

  • Get advice from your local contacts about staying safe
  • Avoid travelling at night, particularly inter-city
  • Avoid travelling alone
  • When driving, ensure all car doors are locked
  • Vary your routes and departure times – avoid patterns which could be tracked
  • Pay careful attention to local media for reports of kidnapping activities

Crime

If you travelling to Mali against our advice you should take these sensible precautions to protect yourself against crime:

  • Don’t carry your credit card, travel tickets and money together - leave spare cash and valuables in a safe place. 
  • Don’t carry your passport unless absolutely necessary and leave a copy of your passport (and travel and insurance documents) with family or friends at home.
  • Avoid showing large sums of money in public and don’t use ATMs after dark, especially if you’re alone. Check no one has followed you after conducting your business.
  • Avoid dark and unlit streets and stairways, and arrange to be picked up or dropped off as close to your hotel or apartment entrance as possible.

Keep a close eye on your personal belongings and hold on to them in public places such as internet cafés, train and bus stations.

Local Laws and Customs

Local laws and customs

Remember, the local laws apply to you as a visitor and it is your responsibility to follow them. Be sensitive to local customs, traditions and practices as your behaviour may be seen as improper, hostile or may even be illegal.

Health

Health

Get travel and medical insurance

Before travelling, the Department strongly recommends that you obtain comprehensive travel insurance which will cover all overseas medical costs, including medical repatriation/evacuation, repatriation of remains and legal costs. You should check any exclusions and, in particular, that your policy covers you for the activities you want to undertake.

Vaccinations

Check what vaccinations you may need for your trip at least eight weeks before you travel. We can’t advise you on vaccinations, but you can get information about vaccinations from your local GP or an International Health and Travel Centre.

Evidence of vaccination (in the form of a certificate) can be a requirement for entry to some countries.

Medication

Make sure you bring enough medication for your entire trip and for any unexpected delays. You may wish to also bring copies of your prescription in case you lose your medication.

Entry requirements (visa/passport)

Additional information

If you are unsure about the entry requirements for Mali, including visa and other immigration information, ask your travel agent or contact the country’s nearest Embassy or Consulate.

You can also check with them how long your passport must be valid for.

Passports
It’s advisable to take a number of photocopies of your passport with you when travelling to Mali and you should carry a photocopy of your passport at all times during your stay.

If your passport is lost or stolen while you’re abroad, we can help.


What we can do:

  • Issue you a replacement passport that will let you finish your trip, or;
  • Issue you with an emergency travel document to get you home.


We’ll do our best to help you as quickly as possible but this can take some time. Your location and circumstances may limit the help we can give you. As Ireland does not have an Embassy or Consulate in Mali there may be additional complications in processing and application for a new passport.
You should contact the nearest Irish Embassy or Consulate to find out what you need to do to apply for a passport. They will also be able to advise you on the fees which apply.

Embassy contact

Embassy Contact

We do not have an Embassy in Mali, please contact our office in Dublin.

Department of Foreign Affairs
Iveagh House
80 St Stephen’s Green
Dublin 2
D02 VY53

Tel: + 353 (0) 1 408 2000

24 hours a day, 7 days a week

Contact us