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Practical information about Uganda

On this page you will find answers to practical questions that you may have in connection with booking of one of our Uganda safari holidays. Read more, for example, about weather conditions, vaccinations and visa. If you have any other questions, we are always ready to help.

Practical information about Uganda
Practical information about Uganda

Practical information about Uganda

On this page you will find answers to practical questions that you may have in connection with booking of one of our Uganda safari holidays. Read more, for example, about weather conditions, vaccinations and visa. If you have any other questions, we are always ready to help.

Best time to travel

Uganda is a great country to visit – whatever the time of year. Situated close to the equator, high above sea level, its elevated location makes for fairly stable temperatures all year round.

Mountain trekking and gorilla tracking are possible all year, though more challenging during the rainy seasons (September to November & March to May). However, there is no other reason to fear the rainy seasons as the sun is generally shining, and the rain mostly occurs at night and in the early hours of the morning.

Day temp.
Night temp.
Rain mm
Passport & visa

It goes without saying that you need to bring your passport with you.

British citizens need a valid visa to travel to Uganda.

Pre-approval for a visa must be applied for online here. You should print out your approval and bring it with you to Uganda. Please note that the visa itself is only issued upon your arrival in Uganda. A visa costs 50 USD per person.

It can take up to 7 days to receive your pre-approval, and we recommend that you apply in good time. If you have not heard anything within 7 days, we recommend that you contact the Uganda High Commission, which can also issue a visa.

  • Your passport must be valid for 6 months after departure from the country
  • There must be space for entry/exit stamps in the passport
  • Entry and exit cards must be completed

Visa and passport rules are subject to changed at short notice. We recommend that you check the rules on the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development website.

Travel documents

Before your departure, you will be sent some travel documents containing important information, which we recommend that you print out and bring with you on your tour. You will, for example, receive your travel itinerary as well as the telephone numbers of our local partners at the destination, allowing you to get in touch with them if you need help along the way.

We recommend that you download the WhatsApp app to your smartphone and add the phone numbers of our business partners. You can send messages and call them for free using the app when you have a Wi-Fi connection.


We recommend that you contact a medical specialist, your GP or an authorised vaccination clinic for information about vaccinations. You can also read more about the rules regarding travel vaccinations here.

Please note that proof of yellow fever vaccination is required upon entry to Uganda. You should always carry a printed version of your vaccination certificate with you in your hand luggage when you travel.


There is currently no Covid-19 vaccination requirement for entry into Uganda. However, these rules may change at short notice. It is your responsibility to check these rules before departure.

Please note that certain Covid-19 rules may apply at the stopover airports on your way to/from Uganda. It is also your responsibility to check this before departure.

You’re always very welcome to contact us if you have any questions about this.

Travel terms and conditions

Please read our general travel terms and conditions carefully, as these are part of the agreement terms for tours purchased at TourCompass. Tours purchased from us are covered under the “Package Travel Act”.

Click here to read our travel terms and conditions.

All the flights and flight-inclusive holidays on this website are financially protected by the ATOL scheme. When you pay you will be supplied with an ATOL Certificate. Please ask for it and check to ensure that everything you booked (flights, hotels and other services) is listed on it.
Please see our booking conditions for further information or for more information about financial protection and the ATOL Certificate click here.

Travel insurance

We always advise you to obtain comprehensive travel insurance when heading off on your dream holiday. It is also highly recommended to acquire cancellation insurance for extra protection. 

Click here to proceed to our page on insurance, where you can read more about our recommendations.

Currency, price level & tipping

USD is used as the local currency in Uganda, but both EUR and GBP are also accepted. We recommend that you carry a small amount of USD with you (1–5 dollar bills), as this is most commonly used at markets, or for payment of tips and the like.



In Uganda, it is customary to tip guides, drivers and carriers. Tips are therefore expected, but it is, of course, up to you how much you wish to pay.

As a rule of thumb, you can reckon on the following:

  • 15 USD per person to the porter on the chimpanzee and gorilla tours
  • 20 USD per person to the head guide on the chimpanzee and gorilla tours
  • 5 USD per person to the guide on other activities
  • 10 USD per person per day for your driver
  • 1-2 USD for each piece of baggage the porter carries into the hotel for you
  • 10% in bars and restaurants (not in hotels where meals are included, however)
  • 2 USD a day for the maid

We recommend that you tip your guide/driver at the end of your tour – preferably in a sealed envelope.

Food & allergies

At the vast majority of our destinations, we are able to take allergies, as well as allergens or preferences into account when it comes to food, however it is important that you inform us of this when you book the tour.

Telephones, Wi-Fi & electricity

Most hotels and lodges receive electricity from their own generators, which are normally turned off after midnight. The standard voltage is 240 V and 3-pin plugs are used, which are not the same as ours, so remember to bring an adaptor. Please be aware that there is not always sufficient power to use a hair dryer, for example.

In the hotel descriptions on our website, you can see whether Wi-Fi is available at the hotels. Please note that the connection may be unstable.

What to pack

Make sure you pack your important and indispensable things in your hand luggage. This applies to items, such as passports, visas, vaccination cards, travel documents, insurance documents, credit cards, money, computers, mobile phones and cameras, as well as information about your health and vital medicines.

We recommend that you pack your things in soft bags when going on a safari holiday. It’s easier to pack the safari cars with soft bags than suitcases. Hardcase suitcases are particularly difficult to fit in the safari car. If possible, avoid using suitcases with hard edges.

We also recommend that you pack light clothes for the safaris and that you avoid bright colours where possible. Bring long trousers and long-sleeved shirts that protect against mosquitoes after sunset and, if necessary, against the sun during the day. Avoid bare feet and legs in the evening due to the mosquitoes.

Remember to bring a small torch and extra batteries in case of the occasional power cut.

When you go gorilla tracking in Uganda, we recommend that your clothes consists of several layers as the temperature fluctuates during the day. It is a good idea to wear waterproof hiking boots that are suitable for climbing steep slopes, and comfortable to wear for several hours. It is also recommended to bring a pair of waterproof gloves and a light rain jacket, which can protect your hands and arms from branches.

Please note that all use, import and production of plastic bags, such as those we know from supermarkets, etc., are prohibited in Uganda. We recommend that you avoid using plastic bags when packing your luggage. Use fabric bags instead, or bags made of a waterproof material other than plastic.

Bringing plant products into the UK

Visitors are not permitted to bring plants, seeds, fruit and other plant products into the UK from their travels outside the UK, unless they are accompanied by a plant health (phytosanitary) certificate. These rules also apply to smaller quantities of plants and plant products.

Read more about the rules here.

Travellers with impaired mobility

Please note that this tour is not generally suitable for people with impaired mobility. Please contact us for information about your options in relation to your specific needs.

Airline tickets

Most airlines have electronic tickets (e-tickets).

It is important that you check your name for spelling errors, as the name on the reservation must be exactly as it appears on your passport. If your name needs to be corrected, please contact us as soon as possible. Please note that this may incur a fee from the airline.

Seat reservation

The airline will assign you a seat on the plane at check-in. If you have specific wishes regarding where you sit on the plane, you can make a seat reservation yourself on the airline’s website or in their app. Please note that most airlines require payment for a seat reservation.

It varies when airlines open for seat reservations, but as a general rule, you can book seats from the time of booking and up to 48 hours before departure.

We also point out that the airline has complete control over all seats on the plane and that they are therefore entitled to make changes to the reservation at any time.
If you do not make a seat reservation before departure, the airline will assign you a seat at check-in.


Your passport and your booking reference, which appears on your itinerary, are required to check in.

We recommend that you download the airline’s app on your phone. In the app, there is an option for online check-in, which typically opens 24 to 48 hours before departure. The app also allows you to stay informed of any flight changes and other important information about your flight.

Please note that the flight times may have changed in relation to those listed on the travel itinerary you received when you booked your holiday. It is always the flight times in the airline’s app or on the airline’s website that apply.


At the airport

We recommend that you arrive at the airport to check in at least two hours before departure. It is a good idea to check the airport’s website for the latest updates.



We use many different airlines for our destinations. You can check the exact rules for hand luggage and checked baggage on the airline’s website or in their app.


If, for example, you are visibly carrying hand luggage in plastic bags upon your arrival in Uganda, you will be asked to hand them in. This also includes plastic bags from “Duty Free”.

Delayed baggage

If your baggage is delayed, please contact the staff in the baggage reclaim area to report your missing baggage.

It is important that you have your baggage receipt when completing your PIR (Property Irregularity Report).

Please note that you must not leave the baggage area at the airport until you have completed the report.

In the event of delayed baggage, we ask you to contact our partner, who will ensure that your guide/driver waits for you.

Flight delays or cancellations

Should any changes occur in connection with your flight reservation before departure, we will of course contact you to let you know.

Should your flight be delayed after check-in, the airline is responsible for rebooking your flight. They will typically book the next possible flight and arrange any meals and accommodation if necessary.

Our partner checks for any changes in arrival times and will naturally still wait for you, even if your flight is delayed.

If, due to a delay or cancellation, the airline books you on another flight number after you have arrived at the airport, please contact us on TourCompass’ emergency number.

Immigration & Customs


When you arrive at your final destination, you will go through immigration, where your passport and any entry documents and visas are checked. In many places, you will be required to provide fingerprints, and a photo of your face will also be taken for biometric recognition. You may also be asked questions about your travel plans in the country and possibly where you are staying.

You will be required to complete arrival and departure forms –  remember to bring a pen with you! Under the section where you have to fill in your address in Uganda, you should enter the name of the first hotel/lodge where you will be staying.


After having collected your luggage on the luggage conveyors, you have to go through customs. If you have nothing to declare, you can proceed through “Nothing to declare”, but if you have something to declare, it is important that you go through “Declare”.

Remember, it is your responsibility to check the country’s customs regulations.


When you come out into the arrivals hall at the airport, you will be met by a guide/driver holding up a TourCompass sign with your name on it, who will make sure you get safely to your hotel.

In the unexpected event that you cannot find your guide/driver, please contact our partner on the emergency number which appears on the travel documents.

Hotel check-in and check-out

Normal check-in is typically from 2 pm, and you cannot therefore count on getting your room earlier. If you’d like to check in early, this can be arranged for a fee when you book the tour.

When you check in, the receptionist will generally register your credit card and may reserve an amount. This is not an additional fee, but customary at hotels to ensure payment of any consumption from the minibar and the like. When you check out, the amount will be automatically released if you have not made use of this.

It is very normal for hotels to take a copy of your passport. In some places, this is a requirement of the local authorities.

Check-out is normally by 11 am. If you’re not travelling until the afternoon or evening, you can have your luggage stored until it’s time to leave. If you would like a late check-out instead, this can be arranged for a fee when you book the tour.

Type of tour and transport

On safaris, you will drive in a 4WD. All the cars have roofs that can be opened during the safari. There can be up to 7 people to a car.


Gorilla Tracking

The mountain gorillas are wild animals that move freely and independently, so there’s no guarantee that you will spot them on the day you are out. However, the probability of seeing the gorillas is very high.

Please note that Gorilla permits cannot be changed to dates other than those originally issued. You cannot claim a refund if you’re unlucky enough not to spot the gorillas.

In case of illness, you will not be permitted to go out to spot the gorillas. The guides therefore have the final say on whether a guest is healthy enough to go on the tour. Expenses for gorilla permits, board and lodging will not be refunded in the event of illness.

We recommend that you book well ahead of departure to be most sure of obtaining the gorilla licence required for the gorilla tracking.

Your licence is included in the price and is only valid on the day you are going gorilla tracking.

The minimum age for participation in gorilla tracking is 15.

You should be prepared for the trip to be physically demanding. Gorilla tracking takes between 1 and 9 hours. We estimate that you will spend around 1 hour with the gorillas.

You should bring a small rucksack with water, snacks, extra clothes, your passport and a torch. It is possible to hire a porter at the beginning of the tracking to carry your rucksack for you and assist you on the most difficult sections of the tracking.

In the event of unforeseen circumstances such as bad weather, blocked roads or otherwise, it may be necessary to change the order of sightseeing tours and attractions in your itinerary.


Need for help during the tour?

We have a 24-hour emergency hotline so that you can always get in touch with us should anything unforeseen occur during your tour. You will also be sent the telephone numbers and emergency telephone numbers of our partners at the destination. In some cases, it may be easiest and fastest to contact our partners due to time differences, if, for example, you find yourself in a situation where your pick-up for an excursion or transfer is more than 15 minutes delayed.


Our livelihood depends on satisfied guests, and we would therefore very much like to hear from you after your return home. Send us an email at or call us on tel.: 01279 704 135.


Catriona Hodge

Catriona is passionate about helping other people fulfill their travel dreams, as she knows how much travel has only improved her life for the better!

Opening hours
Monday-Thursday 9-15
Friday 9-13