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US citizens who are planning on going to Benin must have a passport that is valid for at least six months and they must have already acquired a visa from the Embassy of Benin in Washington DC. This is the only place where they can get an official visa and should not try to travel to Benin without one. Benin visas for US citizens are good for 36 months.
The US government has issued warnings to their citizens who plan to go to Benin to be very careful while moving around the country. They discourage Americans from walking alone even at daytime. They should not carry their valuables with them since there is a very high incidence of muggings and other street crimes in major areas. Travelers are advised to always carry with them a notarized copy of the identification page of their passport. They should also remember not to take pictures of government buildings and other official areas or even local citizens.
General Visa Requirements:
- Completed visa application form (legible)
- One passport sized picture
- Passport with at least 6 months validity
- International certificate of vaccination for yellow fever (WHO yellow card, original copy)
- Letter of guarantee from employer or bank statements
- Copy of travel itinerary or travel tickets to and from Benin
- Green card, for foreigners permanently residing in the USA
- For business travelers: Official letter from company, with letterhead, specifying details and purpose of travel to Benin
- US$100.00 visa application fee, in certified check or money order only (single or multiple entry)
- Self-addressed certified envelope or express mail envelope (for those who would want their passport and visa sent to them by mail)
- Personal applications for a Benin visa can be done at the Consular Section of the Embassy of Benin in Washington DC.
Embassy of Benin
2124 Kalorama Road, NW
Washinton, DC 20008
Telephone: (202) 232-6656
Fax: (202) 265-1996
Consular Section: Tel/Fax: (202) 232-2611
- Please specify if visa applied for is single entry or multiple entries. Application fees for both are the same.
- Visa processing time usually takes only 2 days, but there are some cases when it can take longer. These are when they have to wait for authorization from Benin’s Ministry of foreign Affairs. It is advised that applicants apply for visas a week or more before their planned travel.
- Approved visas are usually valid for 36 months or 3 years.
Travelers are also highly advised to remember to have their passports stamped by Immigration officers when they leave Benin.