Rwanda 2 Tanzania


Date: 22nd September 2013

Border Post: Rusumo

This is the main border post between Rwanda and Tanzania – so much busier than our usual.

Exiting Rwanda
Arriving at the border post, it seems like a truck stop, and we missed the container that serves as the immigration office and had to be called back. No problem though.
1. We parked and went to the office for immigration. We completed the departure form for the officer, and it was a speedy affair with a quick stamp in the passport.
2. Around the corner of the container to the left are 2 customs desks. Again, the carnet was a familiar document and we were stamped out.
3. Then we hopped back into the car and drove to the exit boom – along this stretch of road there was a long queue of trucks (mainly with containers) waiting to enter Rwanda.
4. The car details were entered in the infamous big African book.
5. Then, the boom was lifted and we crossed a narrow one lane bridge.

When we emerged on the other side, we were on the left hand side of the road again, and headed up the hill. Here too, a long line of trucks waiting to enter Rwanda, and now another mish-mash queue of trucks waiting to enter Tanzania. Our little Land Cruiser was lost among the big vehicles!

Entering Tanzania
We found a place to park amongst the trucks, to the left, but I would recommend driving almost up to the gate and parking as close to the gate as possible. We got parked in where we were.
1. The immigration office is on the left of the road, up a set of stairs. We completed the arrival form. The lady immigration officer was very friendly and welcomed us with a quick stamp in the passport.
2. No foreign exchange here, so we used a money changer to change a little money. It all seemed very transparent, with no sleight of hand going on.
3. Then, over the road up to the gate where the customs office is. Here, the carnet is a familiar document and it was stamped with a smile.

Back to the car, needed to negotiate our way out of being parked in. The Customs officer was very kind, raised the boom and moved a truck for others to make their way out.

All in all, it took us an hour – about standard for border crossings in this part of the world. This included a 15 min wait for a broken truck blocking the road!

There was no insurance office here – glad we still have our COMESA insurance.

FYI: COMESA Yellow Card Insurance, covers Burundi, DRC, Djibouti, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Libya, Malawi, Rwanda, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, and Zimbabwe. You need to purchase normal insurance for the first country you enter, and then COMESA is an endorsement purchased once you are in the country. The cost of the COMESA endorsement depends on the number of further countries you want to travel into: 1, 2 or 3+. Zambia appears to be one of the cheapest places to buy COMESA insurance.

Tags: border crossing from Rwanda to Tanzania; overland border crossing from Rwanda to Tanzania, Rwanda Tanzania border crossing