Health Alert – U.S. Embassy Gaborone, Botswana (8/20/2020)
Event: Possible Special Flight August 25 from Gaborone to Addis Ababa
Commercial flights out of Botswana remain suspended until further notice.
However, there will likely be a special flight through Ethiopian Airlines on Tuesday, August 25. The cost is unknown at this time. If you are interested in this flight, please contact the airline sales manager Mrs. Neo directly at:
GBESM@ethiopianairlines.com (telephone +267 311 1631) to register your interest and arrange a booking once that option becomes available.
U.S. citizens who remain interested in returning home should contact us at the following link and fill out the form carefully, then submit:
If you are travelling with others, you must complete the form for each person in your group. Entering your data into this form will add you to a list to get separate emails with flight information and logistics. If you have already completed this form, please do not complete it again. If you have previously completed the form and no longer wish to depart Botswana, please contact us at ConsularGaborone@state.gov so we can remove you from the list.
Repatriation requests can also be made through our website at https://bw.usembassy.gov/covid-19-information/.
Please note that the situation in Ethiopia is fluid and subject to change without notice.
Ethiopian Airlines is continuing flights from Addis Ababa until further notice. As a result, Bole International Airport in Addis Ababa is the de facto repatriation hub for U.S. travelers. As of Monday, March 23, 2020, the Government of Ethiopia (GoE) has instituted a mandatory 14-day quarantine procedure for all individuals entering Ethiopia. There are two different types of passengers and at this time, they are being treated as follows:
Ethiopia as a final destination: Individuals must quarantine at their own expense at one of these designated hotels:
Skylight Hotel – firstname.lastname@example.org or +251 116 818 181
Ghion Hotel – email@example.com or +251 115 513 222
The Skylight Hotel should be the first choice since it is in close proximity to the airport. Please note that the Ghion Hotel is the less expensive hotel, but the Embassy has received numerous complaints about the condition of the hotel (no hot water, unclean, limited food) so travelers should be aware that the hotel may not meet their expectations based on U.S. standards.
Transit Passengers: At this time, transiting commercial passengers are quarantined at one of the above hotels until it is time to return to Bole International Airport for their flight to the United States. If a passenger arrived on a regularly-scheduled commercial flight they can remain in temporary quarantine until their next flight. If the layover will exceed one overnight stay in Ethiopia, there is a risk in the traveler will be subject to a mandatory quarantine situation. We strongly recommend transiting passengers make every attempt to avoid layovers requiring an overnight stay.
Symptomatic Passengers: If any transiting passengers appear symptomatic for COVID-19 (likely manifested through the presence of a fever), they will be taken to Bole Chefa Health clinic to be further tested. These individuals must remain under the supervision of medical professionals within Ethiopia until cleared. Bole Chefa Health Clinic does not approximate U.S. standards for care or comfort.
In the meantime, please do not forget to register in STEP for the latest alerts and information from the U.S. Embassy in Gaborone at https://step.state.gov.
Actions to Take:
- Consult the CDC website for the most up-to-date information.
- For the most recent information on what you can do to reduce your risk of contracting COVID-19 please see the CDC’s latest recommendations.
- Visit the COVID-19 crisis page on travel.state.gov for the latest information.
- Check with your airlines regarding any updated information about your travel plans and/or restrictions.
- Visit our Embassy webpage on COVID-19 for information on conditions in Botswana.
- Visit the Department of Homeland Security’s website on the latest travel restrictions to the U.S.
- Visit the Botswana Ministry of Health and Wellness’ Facebook page for latest travel restrictions.
- Call 997 for instructions from the Government of Botswana if you think you have symptoms of COVID-19.
- U.S. Embassy Gaborone, Botswana
- State Department – Consular Affairs
888-407-4747 or 202-501-4444