In order to enjoy the best that cross-border travelling in Africa has to offer it is important to be aware of all the relevant regulations and required documentation needed. Some countries have specific regulations in respect of motor vehicles being driven across their borders. Getting ready for a trip like this involves planning well in advance so that all paperwork is ready ahead of your journey and you don’t experience any trouble or delays while crossing a specific border.

The Carnet de Passages en Douane is a document used to identify a traveller’s vehicle while going through customs. It can be thought of as a passport for your car. It offers a guarantee to a foreign government that the vehicle identified in the Carnet, if granted temporary importation status, will be removed from the country within the time limit imposed by the respective jurisdiction. In the event that the vehicle is not removed within the imposed time frame, the country may claim from AASA all duties and taxes that would be required to permanently import the vehicle to that country.

The advantages of using the Carnet are that it is an alternative to leaving a cash security deposit with a foreign government, in some countries it further facilitates entry formalities at border posts and port of entries.

The Carnet is valid for a maximum period of one year from the date of issue. The Carnet is available to AASA Members and non-Members residing in South Africa and to applicants who have a car registered in South Africa. Non SA citizens / permanent residents wishing to apply for a Carnet for a vehicle registered outside South Africa must apply through their club in country of residence.

AASA is the only authorized issuer of the FIA Carnet to citizens of South Africa, Botswana, Namibia, Lesotho and Swaziland.

Lesotho

The Carnet de Passage is not required for Lesotho.

Required Documentation:

Valid passport of the driver

Certified copy of vehicle registration papers in the name of the driver

Letter of authority from the registered owner if the vehicle is not owned by the driver

If vehicle is still being financed, carry a letter of authority from the bank (must include dates of travel) together with the vehicle license papers.

If you are not the registered owner of the vehicle: Please carry an affidavit from the police giving you authorisation from the owner / financial institution to take the vehicle abroad

Valid driver’s license

Toll Fees (charged when you park at the border)

ZA Sticker (recommended)

Emergency triangles are compulsory

The vehicle license should be valid

Check that passports are endorsed upon entering and exiting Lesotho

Swaziland

The Carnet de Passage is not required for Swaziland.

Required Documentation:

Valid passport

Original vehicle registration papers: Note that a certified copy is acceptable at the border post. Persons whose vehicles are still being financed by the bank will not have original vehicle registration papers. They would therefore use the vehicle license papers (where the renewal disk is cut out yearly), or

Vehicle license papers: Must be accompanied with a letter from the bank giving you authorisation to take the vehicle across the border including dates. Both the bank letter and license papers should be signed by a Commissioner of Oaths

If you are not the registered owner of the vehicle: Please carry an affidavit from the police giving you authorisation from the owner / financial institution to take the vehicle abroad

Third-Party Insurance: Included in the fuel price; no document required

ZA Sticker (recommended)

Road tax of R50 upon entry

Namibia

The Carnet de Passage is only compulsory if the vehicle is being shipped to Namibia. Police Clearance Certificates are not required for temporary importation. These are only required if the vehicle is being used for rental purposes or if the importer is in the country on a working permit.

Required Documentation:

Valid passport of the driver

Certified copy of vehicle registration papers in the name of the driver

Letter of authority from the registered owner if the vehicle is not owned by the driver

vehicle is still being financed, carry a letter of authority from the bank (must include dates of travel) together with the vehicle license papers.

Valid driver’s license

Permit: Allowed up to three months, if staying in Namibia for longer and on a working permit, a provisional payment of duties valued at 16.5% of the value of the car has to be paid to customs. This is refundable upon the car’s export from Namibia. The work permit must be shown on the passport and on the letter from the company in Namibia confirming that you will be working for them. Cars registered in Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, Malawi, Zambia, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Mozambique and Botswana do not need to obtain a Carnet.

ZA Sticker

Motor Insurance Certificate: Obtainable at the Border Free of Charge. Valid for 30 days.

Once of toll fee valid for 3 months

It is suggested that you contact the customs and excise office at your intended port of entry in order to ascertain that you have all the correct documents.

Botswana

The Carnet de Passage is not required for Botswana.

Required Documentation:

Valid passport of the driver

Certified copy of vehicle registration papers in the name of the driver

Letter of authority from the registered owner if the vehicle is not owned by the driver

If vehicle is still being financed, carry a letter of authority from the bank (must include dates of travel) together with the vehicle license papers.

ZA Sticker (compulsory)

International Driving Permit: Recommended

Zimbabwe

The Carnet de Passage is not required for Zimbabwe. A Temporary Import Permit will be issued at the border post upon entry, free of charge.

Required Documentation:

Valid passport of the driver

Certified copy of vehicle registration papers in the name of the driver

Letter of authority from the registered owner if the vehicle is not owned by the driver

vehicle is still being financed, carry a letter of authority from the bank (must include dates of travel) together with the vehicle license papers.

Police Clearance Certificate: May be required if travelling through the Chirundu Border Post, for vehicles and trailers. When applying for Police Clearance certificate, it is required to have a Request for Police Identification/ Clearance (RPC) Form obtainable from the Traffic Department.

Commercial Vehicle Guarantee (CVG): Private vehicles do not require a CVG (4X4 may be required to obtain a CVG ). Only applicable for Commercial vehicles. Obtainable from Zimbabwe registered clearing agents and payment of relevant bond

Third-Party Insurance: Compulsory – obtained at border post OR alternatively obtain at an AA Accredited Sales Agent store. Please contact your nearest store for prices.

Road Access Fee: Based on the vehicle’s size paid on entry only.

Exit Pass Charges

Carbon Tax Charges

White and Red Honeycomb Reflective Tape: Two small white rectangular size strips on the right and left hand side of the front bumper as well as two small red square strips on the right and left hand side of the rear bumper. Ideally, the strips should be honeycombed. If towing a trailer, two small red square strips on the right and left hand side of the rear bumper are required

Warning Triangles: Two warning triangles on a metal plate

White and Red T-sign: Required if towing a trailer; white must be displayed on front right hand side of trailer / caravan and red on the rear right hand side of the trailer / caravan, when looking forward.

Fire Extinguisher: Compulsory

Safety Vests: Recommended

ZA Sticker

Mozambique

The Carnet de Passage is not required for Mozambique.

Required Documentation:

Valid passport of the driver

Certified copy of vehicle registration papers in the name of the driver

Letter of authority from the registered owner if the vehicle is not owned by the driver

vehicle is still being financed, carry a letter of authority from the bank (must include dates of travel) together with the vehicle license papers.

Valid driver’s license

Temporary Import Permit for vehicle: Compulsory

Third-Party Insurance: Compulsory

Red Warning Triangles: 2 triangles required (does not need to be displayed on car)

Reflective Jacket: If more than two people are travelling in the car, then two jackets will be required (to be used when changing a tyre, at an accident scene, or if loading)

Immigration Fees

Declaration Form for Vehicle

Yellow and Blue Mozambique Warning Triangle: Two stickers required if towing a trailer; one in the front of the vehicle (on the bumper) and one on the rear of the trailer

ZA Sticker

International Driving Permit: Recommended

Angola

The Carnet de Passage is not required for Angola.

Required Documentation:

Valid passport of the driver

Certified copy of vehicle registration papers in the name of the driver

Letter of authority from the registered owner if the vehicle is not owned by the driver

If vehicle is still being financed, carry a letter of authority from the bank (must include dates of travel) together with the vehicle license papers.

Temporary Import Permit (TIP)

Third Party Insurance: Compulsory; purchased at an insurance company, called Oshi Congo, close to the border post.

ZA Sticker

International Driving Permit: Recommended

Valid car license

Zambia

Carnet de Passage is not compulsory for Zambia. However, it will facilitate border crossing. It is recommended if the vehicle is to remain in Zambia for more than three months.

Required Documentation:

Valid passport of the driver

Certified copy of vehicle registration papers in the name of the driver

Letter of authority from the registered owner if the vehicle is not owned by the driver

vehicle is still being financed, carry a letter of authority from the bank (must include dates of travel) together with the vehicle license papers.

Police Clearance Certificate: May be required if travelling through the Chirundu Border Post, both for vehicles and trailers

Third-Party Insurance: Compulsory – obtained at border post

White and Red Honeycomb Reflective Tape: Two small white rectangular size strips on the right and left hand side of the front bumper as well as two small red square strips on the right and left hand side of the rear bumper

Warning Triangles: Two warning triangles (do not need to be displayed); warning triangle must be on a metal plate

White and Red T-sign:Required if towing a trailer; white must be displayed on front right hand side of trailer / caravan and red on the rear right hand side of the trailer / caravan, when looking forward

Fire Extinguisher: Compulsory if carrying jerry cans with fuel

ZA Sticker (compulsory)

Malawi

The Carnet de Passage is recommended for Malawi.

Required Documentation:

Valid passport of the driver

Certified copy of vehicle registration papers in the name of the driver

Letter of authority from the registered owner if the vehicle is not owned by the driver

vehicle is still being financed, carry a letter of authority from the bank (must include dates of travel) together with the vehicle license papers.

Third-Party Insurance: Compulsory – obtained at the border post

Red Warning Triangles: Required

ZA Sticker

Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC)

The Carnet de Passage is recommended for the DRC.

Required Documentation:

Valid passport of the driver

Certified copy of vehicle registration papers in the name of the driver

Letter of authority from the registered owner if the vehicle is not owned by the driver

vehicle is still being financed, carry a letter of authority from the bank (must include dates of travel) together with the vehicle license papers.

Third-Party Insurance: Compulsory – obtained at the border post.

ZA Sticker

International Driving Permit: Recommended.

Tanzania

Carnet de Passage is highly recommended; if you do not have a Carnet, a TIP will be issued at a fee.

Required Documentation:

Valid passport of the driver

Certified copy of vehicle registration papers in the name of the driver

Letter of authority from the registered owner if the vehicle is not owned by the driver

vehicle is still being financed, carry a letter of authority from the bank (must include dates of travel) together with the vehicle license papers.

Third-Party Insurance: Compulsory – obtained at border post

Fuel Levy

FVP Levy

ZA Sticker

International Driving Permit: Recommended

Burundi

Carnet de Passage is highly recommended.

Required Documentation:

Valid passport of the driver

Certified copy of vehicle registration papers in the name of the driver

Letter of authority from the registered owner if the vehicle is not owned by the driver

If vehicle is still being financed, carry a letter of authority from the bank (must include dates of travel) together with the vehicle license papers.

Third-Party Insurance: Compulsory – obtained at the border post

ZA Sticker

International Driving Permit: Recommended

Rwanda

Carnet de Passage is highly recommended.

Required Documentation:

Valid passport of the driver

Certified copy of vehicle registration papers in the name of the driver

Letter of authority from the registered owner if the vehicle is not owned by the driver

vehicle is still being financed, carry a letter of authority from the bank (must include dates of travel) together with the vehicle license papers.

Valid passport

Original vehicle registration papers: Note that a certified copy is acceptable at the border post. Persons whose vehicles are still being financed by the bank will not have original vehicle registration papers. They would therefore use the vehicle license papers (where the renewal disk is cut out yearly), or

Vehicle license papers: Must be accompanied with a letter from the bank giving you authorisation to take the vehicle across the border including dates. Both the bank letter and license papers should be signed by a Commissioner of Oaths

If you are not the registered owner of the vehicle: Please carry an affidavit from the police giving you authorisation from the owner / financial institution to take the vehicle abroad

Third-Party Insurance: Compulsory – obtained at the border post

ZA Sticker

International Driving Permit: Recommended

Uganda

Ugandan Customs no longer stamp Carnet de Passage. However, they issue a form called “Single Administrative Document” that must be attached to the Carnet. A clearing agent at the border post will assist with the completion of the form.

Required Documentation:

Valid passport of the driver

Certified copy of vehicle registration papers in the name of the driver

Letter of authority from the registered owner if the vehicle is not owned by the driver

vehicle is still being financed, carry a letter of authority from the bank (must include dates of travel) together with the vehicle license papers.

Third-Party Insurance: Compulsory – obtained at border post

Road User Fee

Payment for TILL

ZA Sticker

International Driving Permit: Recommended

Kenya

Carnet de Passage: Compulsory

Required Documentation:

Valid passport of the driver

Certified copy of vehicle registration papers in the name of the driver

Letter of authority from the registered owner if the vehicle is not owned by the driver

vehicle is still being financed, carry a letter of authority from the bank (must include dates of travel) together with the vehicle license papers.

Third-Party Insurance: Compulsory – obtained at the border post

Foreign Vehicle Permit

Licence for Foreign Private Vehicle

Toll Fees: To be paid at the Malaba Station

ZA Sticker

80 / kph Sticker: Required on trailer if towing

International Driving Permit: Recommended

Ethiopia

The Carnet de Passage is recommended for Ethiopia.

Required Documentation:

Valid passport of the driver

Certified copy of vehicle registration papers in the name of the driver

Letter of authority from the registered owner if the vehicle is not owned by the driver

vehicle is still being financed, carry a letter of authority from the bank (must include dates of travel) together with the vehicle license papers.

Third-Party Insurance: Compulsory – obtained at the border post

Vehicle Declaration Form: Stamped by the Ethiopian Embassy where visa was obtained

ZA Sticker

International Driving Permit: Recommended

Eritrea

Required Documentation:

Valid passport of the driver

Certified copy of vehicle registration papers in the name of the driver

Letter of authority from the registered owner if the vehicle is not owned by the driver

vehicle is still being financed, carry a letter of authority from the bank (must include dates of travel) together with the vehicle license papers.

If you are not the registered owner of the vehicle: Please carry an affidavit from the police giving you authorisation from the owner / financial institution to take the vehicle abroad

Third-Party Insurance: Compulsory – obtained at the border post

ZA Sticker

International Driving Permit: Recommended

North and South Sudan

Carnet de Passage is highly recommended.

Required Documentation:

Valid passport of the driver

Certified copy of vehicle registration papers in the name of the driver

Letter of authority from the registered owner if the vehicle is not owned by the driver

vehicle is still being financed, carry a letter of authority from the bank (must include dates of travel) together with the vehicle license papers.

Third-Party Insurance: Compulsory – obtained at the border post

North Sudan: For assistance in clearing vehicles in Wadi Halfa, please contact the AA of SA Head Office on +27 (011) 799-1042 / 1009

South Sudan: You will need to register your vehicle and pay USD 100 (first payment at the border on entry and thereafter payable per city entered)

ZA Sticker

International Driving Permit: Recommended

Egypt

You cannot enter Egypt without the Carnet de Passage which must be in the name of the driver. The AA of SA will require a deposit / guarantee of 200% value of the vehicle. Egyptian Customs charge a fee for stamping the Carnet document and clearing can take up to one week. An Entry Permit is issued at the border (the fee is levied according to the engine capacity and it is valid for three months). Temporary Egyptian plates are affixed to every vehicle at the frontier post. A deposit for the plates is payable. Plates must be surrendered when the vehicle is exported from Egypt.

Required Documentation:

Valid passport of the driver

Certified copy of vehicle registration papers in the name of the driver

Letter of authority from the registered owner if the vehicle is not owned by the driver

If vehicle is still being financed, carry a letter of authority from the bank (must include dates of travel) together with the vehicle license papers.

ZA Sticker: Available at any AA Accredited Sales Agent store

International Driving Permit: Compulsory

Djibouti

The Carnet de Passage is recommended for Djibouti.

Required Documentation:

Valid passport of the driver

Certified copy of vehicle registration papers in the name of the driver

Letter of authority from the registered owner if the vehicle is not owned by the driver

vehicle is still being financed, carry a letter of authority from the bank (must include dates of travel) together with the vehicle license papers.

Third-Party Insurance: Compulsory – obtained at the border post

ZA Sticker

International Driving Permit: Recommended

Please take note that the information provided above is intended as a guideline only. The onus rests on every individual to make sure that the information is still valid and has not been amended or changed by the respective country.