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Togo Country Guide

  1. CountryFacts
  2. Health
  3. Media
  1. Intro
  2. Geography
  3. People
  4. Travel
  5. Embassies & Visas
  6. Finance
  7. Cities/Regions

Quick Facts

Region: Africa
Full Name: Togolese Republic
Capital City: Lome
Language Spoken: French (official and the language of commerce), Ewe and Mina (the two major African languages in the south), Kabye (sometimes spelled Kabiye) and Dagomba (the two major African languages in the north)

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Geographic data

8 00 N, 1 10 E

Elevation Extremes

lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m highest point: Mont Agou 986 m

Land boundaries

total: 1,647 km border countries: Benin 644 km, Burkina Faso 126 km, Ghana 877 km

Natural hazards

hot, dry harmattan wind can reduce visibility in north during winter; periodic droughts

Natural resources

phosphates, limestone, marble, arable land

Land use

arable land: 44.2% permanent crops: 2.11% other: 53.69% (2005)

Environmental current issues

deforestation attributable to slash-and-burn agriculture and the use of wood for fuel; water pollution presents health hazards and hinders the fishing industry; air pollution increasing in urban areas

Climate

From December to January, the Harmattan wind blows from the north. The rainy season lasts from April to July. Short rains occur from October to November. The driest and hottest months are February and March. Required clothing Tropical lightweights. Rainwear for the rainy season.

Time difference

time difference: UTC 0

Population

5,548,702 note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality and death rates, lower population and growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2006 est.)

Age structure

0-14 years: 42.3% (male 1,177,141/female 1,169,321) 15-64 years: 55.1% (male 1,485,621/female 1,570,117) 65 years and over: 2.6% (male 59,870/female 86,632) (2006 est.)

Median age

total: 18.3 years male: 17.8 years female: 18.7 years (2006 est.)

Population growth rate

2.72% (2006 est.)

Birth rate

37.01 births/1,000 population (2006 est.)

Death rate

9.83 deaths/1,000 population (2006 est.)

Net migration rate

0 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2006 est.)

Sex ratio

at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.01 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 0.95 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.69 male(s)/female total population: 0.96 male(s)/female (2006 est.)

Life expectancy at birth

total population: 57.42 years male: 55.41 years female: 59.49 years (2006 est.)

Total fertility rate

4.96 children born/woman (2006 est.)

Business Practices

It is acceptable for visiting business people to wear a safari suit except on very formal business and social occasions. Business is conducted in French, only a few executives speak English. Appointments should be made and business cards should be carried. Official corruption in Togo was formerly much less prevalent than in many other African countries, but the years of economic difficulty have brought an increase in requests for bribes and "gifts" in order to get business done. Office hours are 0700-1730 Monday to Friday.

Crime

Street crime is a major problem in Lome. Petty thefts, pickpocketing, residential break-ins, and carjackings are common. Economic crime, such as fraud, also occurs in Togo. Nigerian-based advance fee fraud has been increasing in the country. As part of such schemes, foreign businessmen have been enticed into Togo to participate in business transactions with Nigerians. The usual results are that the businessmen are defrauded of thousands of dollars. Police assistance in Togo is best described as rudimentary. The police lack funds and equipment to be effective against the criminal threat in Lome. The police maintain an emergency number, which is 21-28-71, but the caller must be able to explain to the operator, in French, the exact location of the incident by using landmarks. The caller should also be prepared to send a vehicle to pick up the police officer responding to the incident. Security forces in Lome are also known to harass individuals. They maintain nightly "security checkpoints" throughout the city. The police officers who maintain these checkpoints often lack the proper discipline. This was a factor in the recent slaying of a foreign diplomat. Be prepared to stop at checkpoints.

Hotels

Only Lom? and Lama-Kara have international-class accommodation but there are hotels in the main towns. Lom?'s several international standard hotels remain in operation but have declined in quality in recent years. They include the Hotel 2 F vrier, the Hotel Le Benin, the Hotel Palm Beach, and the Hotel Sarakawa

Communications

Telephone IDD is available to main cities. The country code is 228 and there are no area codes. Outgoing international code is 00. Fax service in becoming available in some hotels.

Electricity

is 220 volts AC, 50Hz single phase. Plugs are square or round 2-pin. Electricity 220 volts AC, 50Hz single phase. Plugs are square or round two-pin.

Plug Types

C

Food And Dining

Togon food is particularly good. Most restaurants catering for visitors tend to be French-orientated, although some do serve African dishes. In Lom? in particular, there are many small cafes serving local food. Meat, poultry and seafoods are plentiful and well prepared, as are the local fruit and vegetables. A good selection of alcoholic drinks is available.
National specialties: ?P?tes or akume, maize flour mixed with water served with different sauces usually made with vegetables such as okra, spinach or meat.
? Fufu, mashed yam eaten with sauces made from groundnut, goat or palm nut.
? Riz sauce arachide - rice with peanut sauce. National drinks:
? Palm wine.
? Tchakpallo (fermented millet), produced locally.
Tipping:
When not included, a tip of about 10 per cent is customary. Taxi drivers do not usually expect a tip.
Nightlife
There are numerous nightclubs, particularly in Lom?. Most serve food and are open until the early hours for dancing to a mixture of West African and Western popular music. There are also cinemas showing French and English-language films.

Entry departure requirements

Visa immigration information

Passports

Valid passport required by all, except nationals of the following with a National Identity Card: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, C?te d'Ivoire, Ghana, Guinea, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria and Senegal.

Visas

Required by all except the following for stays of up to 90 days:
(a) nationals of Benin, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, C?te d'Ivoire, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal and Sierra Leone.
(b) transit passengers continuing their journey by the same or first connecting aircraft within 24 hours, provided not leaving the airport;
(c) children under 15 if accompanied by their parents.

Note

All nationals can obtain an entry visa on arrival in Togo for a maximum stay of up to seven days. Passports need to be handed in on arrival and collected along with the visa from the police station the following day.

Types of visa and cost

Entry and Residence: fee depends on nationality. All nationals of the USA will be issued a visa for a maximum stay of 12 months for a fee of approximately US$100.

Validity

Entry visas: Up to 90 days. Visas can be extended on arrival in Lom? at the Direction G?n?rale de la Police Nationale. For stays exceeding 90 days, a residence visa (visa de s?jour) will be issued.

Application to

Consulate (or Consular section at Embassy); see Passport/Visa Information.

Application requirements

(a) A valid passport. (b) Two completed application forms. (c) Three passport-size photos. (d) Yellow fever vaccination certificate for travelers over one year of age. (e) Fee. (f) A letter from employer confirming the applicant will return to country of residence to resume duties after the visit or a letter from the airline or travel organization guaranteeing onward or return air tickets. (g) A stamped addressed envelope if applying by post. (h) Company letter for business trips.

Working days required

Three.

HIV entry requirements

No Test Required

Departure tax

None

Embassies

Republic of Togo Embassy in the UK

Units 3, 7 & 8 Lysander Mews, Lysander Grove, London N19 3QP
Website:https://togoembassylondon.com/
Telephone: +44 (0)203 198 9579
Email:[email protected] and [email protected]

Embassy of the Republic of Togo in France

8 rue Alfred Roll, 75017 Paris, France
Tel: (1) 4380 1213.

Embassy of the Republic of Togo in the USA

2208 Massachusetts Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20008, USA
Tel: (202) 234 4212.
Website: http://www.togoleseembassy.com/

Following the Presidential elections on 24 April 2005, there was a period of political unrest, particularly in Lome, including attacks on Westerners. The internal situation remains uncertain but there has been a sustained period of relative calm. Travelers should avoid crowds and keep a low profile in case the situation deteriorates.
Extra caution is advised if moving around after dark. Entry and exit points at borders are being opened and closed without warning.
Crime is common in some areas of Lome. Car-jackings have also been reported.
The threat from terrorism is low, but you should be aware of the global risk of indiscriminate terrorist attacks, which could be against civilian targets, including places frequented by foreigners.
This advice is based on information provided by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in the UK. It is correct at time of publishing. As the situation can change rapidly, visitors are advised to contact the following organizations for the latest travel advice:

British Foreign and Commonwealth Office

Tel: (0845) 850 2829.
Website: https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/togo

US Department of State

Website: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/international-travel/International-Travel-Country-Information-Pages/Togo.html

Currency

CFA (Communaut? Financiaire Africaine) Franc (XOF) = 100 centimes. Notes are in denominations of XOF10,000, 5000, 2500, 2000, 1000 and 500. Coins are in denominations of XOF250, 100, 50, 25, 10, 5 and 1. Togo is part of the French Monetary Area. Only currency issued by the Banque des Etats de l'Afrique de l'Ouest (Bank of West African States) is valid; currency issued by the Banque des Etats de l'Afrique Centrale (Bank of Central African States) is not. The CFA Franc is tied to the Euro.

Currency restrictions

The import of local currency is limited to XOF1 million, the export to XOF25,000. The import of foreign currency is limited to the equivalent of XOF1 million which should be declared on arrival. The export of foreign currency is limited to the amount declared on entry.

Banking hours

Mon-Fri 0800-1600.

Currency exchange

Foreign currencies can be exchanged at banks and bureaux de change in Lom? and other major cities. The main branch of the Togolese Central Bank in Lom? (BTCI) can give cash withdrawals against a Visa card.

Credit cards

American Express is widely accepted, with more limited use of Diners Club, MasterCard and Visa. Check with your credit or debit card company for details of merchant acceptability and other facilities which may be available.

Travellers cheques

International traveller's cheques are accepted in Lom? and other major cities.

City/RegionCity/Area codeFollowed by
Central region5+ 6 digits
Kara region6+ 6 digits
Lom? Municipality2+ 6 digits
Maritime region3+ 6 digits
Plateaux region4+ 6 digits
Savannah region7+ 6 digits
  1. Health Information
  2. Recent Disease Outbreak
  3. Hospital Database

Dental care

Avoid dental treatment as the standards of care and hygiene cannot be guaranteed.

Medication Availability

Medication in short supply and even when available is often out of date, heat damaged or counterfeit and therefore should be avoided. The exception is the International Clinic St Joseph in Lome which does have international medication

Blood supplies

Blood supplies should be considered as unsafe

Medical facilities

Medical facilities in Togo are limited. There is no emergency medical care. Some medicines are, however, available through local pharmacies.

General caution

Recent medical and dental exams should ensure that the traveler is in good health. Carry appropriate health and accident insurance documents and copies of any important medical records. Bring an adequate supply of all prescription and other medications as well as any necessary personal hygiene items, including a spare pair of eyeglasses or contact lenses if necessary. Drink only bottled beverages (including water) or beverages made with boiled water. Do not use ice cubes or eat raw seafood, rare meat or dairy products. Eat well-cooked foods while they are still hot and fruits that can be peeled without contamination. Avoid roadside stands and street vendors. Swim only in well-maintained, chlorinated pools or ocean water known to be free from pollution; avoid freshwater lakes, streams and rivers. Wear clothing which reduces exposed skin and apply repellents containing DEET to remaining areas. Sleep in well-screened accommodations. Carry anti-diarrheal medication. Reduce problems related to sun exposure by using sunglasses, wide-brimmed hats, sunscreen lotions and lip protection.

Specific concerns

AIDS occurs. Blood supply may not be adequately screened and/or single-use, disposable needles and syringes may be unavailable. When possible, travelers should defer medical treatment until reaching a facility where safety can be assured. To avoid hookworm, tapeworm, etc., do not walk barefoot.

Immunization

Cholera: Although limited in effectiveness, vaccination may be appropriate for persons living and/or working in less than sanitary conditions for more than 3 months where medical facilities are unavailable. Vaccination may also be appropriate for travelers with impaired gastric defenses who are planning an extended visit or being exposed to unsanitary conditions. Vaccination is not advised for pregnant women, infants younger than 6 months old, or persons with a history of severe reaction to the vaccine. Hepatitis A: Consider active immunization with hepatitis A vaccine or passive immunization with immune globulin (IG) for all susceptible travelers. Especially consider choosing active immunization for persons planning to reside for a long period or for persons who take frequent short-term trips to risk areas. The importance of protection against hepatitis A increases as length of stay increases. It is particularly important for persons who will be living in or visiting rural areas, eating or drinking in settings of poor or uncertain sanitation, or who will have close contact with local persons (especially young children) in settings with poor sanitary conditions. Hepatitis B: Vaccination is advised for health care workers, persons anticipating direct contact with blood from or sexual contact with inhabitants, and persons planning extended stays of 6 months or greater (especially those who anticipate using local health care facilities, staying in rural areas, or having intimate contact with the local population). Meningitis: Meningococcal vaccine is recommended for travelers, particularly during the December-June dry season when epidemics are most likely to occur. Importance of vaccination increases with length of stay and/or exposure to crowded conditions. Pregnancy is a relative contraindication to vaccination. Protection may be less effective for infants and children aged 3-23 months than it is for persons aged 2 years and older. Polio: A one-time booster dose is recommended for travelers who have previously completed a standard course of polio immunization. Refer to CDC guidelines for vaccinating unimmunized or incompletely immunized persons. Pregnancy is a relative contraindication to vaccination; however, if protection is needed, either IPV or OPV may be used, depending on preference and time available. Rabies: Preexposure vaccination should be considered for persons staying longer than 30 days who are expected to be at risk to bites from domestic and/or wild animals (particularly dogs), or for persons engaged in high risk activities such as spelunking or animal handling. Need for vaccination is more important if potential exposure is in rural areas and if adequate postexposure care is not readily available. Typhoid: Vaccination should be considered for persons staying longer than 3 weeks, adventurous eaters, and those who will venture off the usual tourist routes into small cities, villages and rural areas. Importance of vaccination increases as access to reasonable medical care becomes limited. Contraindications depend on vaccine type. Yellow fever: Vaccination is recommended for travelers over 9 months of age going outside of urban areas. Note: All routine vaccines (such as DTP or Td, Hib, MMR, polio, varicella, influenza and pneumococcal) should be kept up-to-date as a matter of good health practice unrelated to travel.

Disease risk summary

The sanitation level is low and health controls are minimal in Togo. Insect-borne diseases: are major causes of illness. Many diseases, including yellow fever, are endemic, with only scattered cases being reported and, from time to time, more extensive outbreaks. Filariasis - prevalent Leishmaniasis - occurs (both cutaneous and visceral types may be found, particularly in the drier areas) Loiasis - prevalent Malaria - prevalent Onchocerciasis (river blindness) - prevalent Relapsing fever - occurs Trypanosomiasis (sleeping sickness) - occurs (human type - mainly in small, isolated areas - is reported) Tungiasis - prevalent Typhus - occurs (louse-, flea-, and tick-borne types occur) Food-borne and water-borne illness: highly endemic. The dysenteries and diarrheal diseases, giardiasis, the typhoid fevers and viral hepatitis are widespread. Echinococcosis (hydatid disease) is widespread in animal-breeding areas. Cholera - occurs Dracunculiasis - occurs (reported from 19 of 21 prefectures, and the disease is especially severe in Amou, Haho, Kloto and Ogou prefectures in the Plateaux Region; in Bassar and Tchamba prefectures in the Centrale Region; and in Zio in the Maritime Region) Helminthic (parasitic worm) infections - prevalent Lassa fever - occurs (exists in some rural areas, and people visiting these areas should take particular care to avoid rat-contaminated food or food containers; but the extent of the disease should not be exaggerated) Schistosomiasis - prevalent Other hazards: Diseases such as measles and diphtheria are commonly reported, and cases of polio still occur regularly. Influenza risk extends throughout the year. Meningococcal meningitis - occurs (risk is highest during the December-June dry season, when epidemics are most likely) Rabies - occurs (sporadic in rural and urban areas, particulalry the Lome area) Trachoma - prevalent

Entry requirements

Yellow fever: A yellow fever vaccination certificate is required from travelers over 1 year of age coming from all countries.

Recent disease outbreaks

No recent disease outbreaks

NameAddress
Polyclinique Internationale Saint Joseph8 Boulevard du Haho Hedrjanawoe BP 10039 Lome

Media

Freedom of the press is provided for in the constitution, but is not respected in practice. The major television channel is government-owned, as is the only daily newspaper and some of the private radio stations. Journalists writing for the private weeklies are subject to harassment and legal action. Several private radio and TV stations which had criticized the military-backed succession of Faure Gnassingbe as President were closed in 2005. Press offences cannot be punished by imprisonment.
Press: The main newspaper is the government-owned Togo-Presse, published in French, Ewe and Kabiy?. Le Regard is an independent weekly.
TV: Television Togolaise (TUT) is a state run television channel. Media Plus is a pay-TV operator.
Radio: Radio Lom? is a state run radio station and Radio Zephyr is a privately run station.

Need help?

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