Saturday, September 18, 2021

How To Travel Around Algeria

AfricaAlgeriaHow To Travel Around Algeria
WARNING
While Algeria has come a long way since the civil war in the 1990s, there are still occasional attacks against government institutions (buildings, police forces, etc). Such attacks include suicide bombings, false roadblocks, kidnappings, and ambushes , particularly in rural areas such as the Kabylie region of the country. Sporadic episodes of civil unrest have been known to occur.Additionally, there is the threat of bandits and an al Qaeda-affiliated terrorist group (AQIM or al-Qaeda in Islamic Maghreb) in the south. While much of their activity has been in neighbouring Mali & Niger, the situation in southern Algeria has grown worse. Islamist rebels in northern Mali are easily capable of crossing the porous Saharan border into Southern Algeria such as when al Qaeda-backed terrorists attacked an oil field in January 2013, taking dozens of Westerners hostage. Militants affiliated to ISIL (also known as ISIS or Daesh), another terrorist organisation, also operate in the country, and are fiercely hostile to Western countries. A French national was kidnapped and later beheaded by these militants in 2014.Some routes in the Sahara may require vehicles to travel only in military/police-escorted convoys for safety.
Absolutely no attempt should be made to travel overland to Mali or Niger! Southern Algeria should also be considered too dangerous for tourism as the conflict in Mali rages and radical Islamists flock to the region.

Algeria is a large country, and traveling between major cities can take a lot of time and nerves. While distances are shorter in the more populated north, and a trip from east to west can be completed in a day, traveling to cities in the Sahara is more difficult because the south is barely connected with good roads, train, and bus connections.

By plane

With airplane, you can reach nearly every major Algerian city from Algiers, and it is strongly advised to take a flight for traveling longer distances or to Saharan locations. Houari Boumediene Airport in Algiers is the country’s only modern airport; the others are more like airfields with little facilities.

Air Algérie is the national airline, operating flights to virtually every Algerian city that has an airport. Prices vary according on the length of the trip traveled; tickets to smaller and Sahara ci: Applicants must include an invitation from their Algerian host that has been notarized at the city hall of the Algerian host’s place of residence with their application. Invitations faxed or sent separately will not be accepted by the Embassy.

Spouses of Algerian citizens must provide a copy of their spouse’s valid Consulate Registration Card as well as a sponsorship letter signed by the Algerian spouse.

Passport Return: Applicants may pick up their passports at the Embassy or mail a prepaid self-addressed envelope. The Embassy is not liable for missing or delayed documents caused by the post office or other visa providers.

Documentation must be in its whole. Incomplete paperwork may cause the processing time to be extended or returned to the applicant at the applicant’s expense. – If prior approval from Algerian authorities is needed, application processing may be delayed. Furthermore, the Embassy retains the right to ask any application for further documents. If there is a delay in the processing of the visa application, the Embassy is not responsible. – Applicants should plan their trip to Algeria depending on the date of entrance specified on their visa. Applicants should not arrive in Algeria before that date; otherwise, they will be denied entry. Applicants must get a new visa if their trip intentions change.

Ones are often more expensive than larger cities (such as Oran to Algier). The airline’s hub is Houari Boumediene Airport, where nearly all flights begin or end. There are seven daily flights from Algiers to Oran, as well as five daily flights to Annaba and Costantine. Other locations serviced daily or several days per week from Algiers include Adrar, El Oued, Tebessa, Batna, Biskra, Sétif, In Ames, Tindouf, Timmoun, Tlemcen, Tamanrasset, Tiaret, Tebessa, El Goela, Ouaragla, Hassi Mesaoud, Bejaia, Ghrardaia.

By taxi

When traveling between nearby cities or within cities, it is common to use a cab; the costs are quite reasonable; but, when traveling between larger cities across long distances, taxis are as costly as flying. Avoid using unauthorized taxis since the driver will almost certainly scam you off. Most taxis do not have a taximeter, so agree on a fee ahead of time. Many drivers will attempt to take advantage of your ignorance, but no matter what you are told, never pay more than 30 DA per kilometer. Tipping is not required, however you may round up to the nearest ten Dinars.

By car

The road network in the north is highly developed; the Algerian government has made significant improvements in road construction in recent years, with new highways constructed to replace the existing marod roads. The most significant route is the 1200 km long N1 (Route est-ouest) from Annaba to Oran, which connects virtually all major towns in the north, including Algiers.

Because of the well-functioning public transit system, a vehicle is not strictly required, although it may be helpful to access more distant places on occasion. Keep in mind that driving practices in China are totally different from those in the West, and that laws and prohibitive signs are seen as recommendations, even by the police! Allowing a local Algerian to drive for you in the first few days to acquire a feel for the driving style is a smart choice; if this is not feasible, it is advised that you remain on the roads.

Do not attempt to reach Saharan regions in any vehicle other than a 4×4, since periodic dunes on the roads and severe temperature fluctuations would provide a challenge to both the driver and the vehicle.

Fuel is very inexpensive, costing little more than 15 DA per litre.

By train

Algerian railroads are operated by SNTF, and trains and lines are presently being modernized. Ten comfortable high-speed trains known as Autorail were purchased, with two of them presently in service. Tickets may only be purchased at railway stations; costs are reasonable but more than buses or taxis, but in exchange, you will have greater luxury and enjoy beautiful scenery.

Main Routes :

  • Algiers to Oran, the train takes 4 hours and departs each day at 15:00 from Algiers Central Station and arrives in Oran at 19:30, 2nd Class: 1.000 DA, 1st Class: 1.500 DA.
  • Algiers to Annaba, the only option is a sluggish and less comfortable nighttrain, which departs each day at 20:45 and takes the whole night to reach Annaba. Alternatively, you may take the daytrain to Constantine and then a cheap cab to Annaba.
  • Algiers to Constantine departing each day at 06:45 and arriving in Constantine at 13:30, make sure that you get a window seat because the train will take you through the scenic kabilyan mountains and wonderful landscapes, 2nd Class: 1.200 DA, 1st Class : 1.800 DA.