Flights to Abidjan

What’s up with Ble Goude?

I was at a get together for Ivorians in the diaspora last night to celebrate peace and reconciliation. Though still divided – no pro-Gbagbo showed up – they do know how to party.  One of the topics that came up (among us men talking on the parking lot outside, escaping the good but loud music) was whether Charles Ble Goude was still alive or not.

I estimate there was about a 2:1 split for Goude being dead, with arguments put forward that he has a loud mouth and that we would have heard of him from Ghana or somewhere if he was still alive, and that it was weird that Patrick Achi announced Goude was arrested just to retract it later.

Fancy a stop-over chez Gaddafi?

Another topic that came up is how to get to Abidjan and I thought I do a check-up on that.  Here’s how’s it’s looking today for departure around the 18th May and return around 19th June:

From Paris:

With Royal Air Maroc and stopping in Casablanca:   660€

With Air Afriqiyah through their Tripoli hub:  Ahh, maybe not

With SN Brussels and stopping in Brussels: 740€

With Emirates stopping in Dubai and Accra: 950€  (not quite the shortest route)

Direct flight with Air France: 1,100€

Used to be the cheapest option to Abidjan

Not necessarily the safest option though

From Brussels:

With Royal Air Maroc stopping in Casablanca:   720€

With Ethiopian Airlines stopping in Paris and Addis Abeba: 800€

Semi-Direct with SN Brussels:  940€   (“technical stop” in Accra on the return leg)

From London:

With SN Brussels and stopping in Brussels and Accra: 780€

With Royal Air Maroc and stopping in Casablanca:   800€

With Emirates stopping in Dubai and Accra: 830€

With KLM to Accra stopping in Amsterdam: 510€  (and then a  bus ride to Abidjan for those that are not in a hurry, or a couple hundred euros more for a separate Accra – Abidjan flight)

From Frankfurt:

With Ethiopian Airlines stopping in Addis Abeba and Ouagadougou: 630€

With Royal Air Maroc stopping in Casablanca:   800€

Direct fight to Accra: 900€

Secondary hubs

And then we have secondary West European hubs where things get more tricky/expensive.

From Stockholm for example for the 18/19 May to 18/19 June period I see:

With Ethiopian Airlines stopping in Addis Abeba and Ouagadougou: 1,050€

With SN Brussels and stopping in Brussels and Accra (return only): 1,100€

From secondary hubs it might be worth it to take a low-cost to a main hub, but that’s risky if there are delays so your main flight is missed, and low-costs don’t allow much luggage.

Another option is to fly to Accra in Ghana where I have seen very good prices with KLM, Lufthansa or SN Brussels, and then take a long bus-trip or short flight to Abidjan.  Prices are, however, not very good with KLM directly from Amsterdam, or Lufthansa directly from Frankfurt. There is a premium for the convenience of a direct flight.

What’s next?

What’s striking in the prices above is the absence of reasonable prices from Air France.  The thing is, for a while they were practically the only ones flying and consequently could increase rates.  The 18/19 May is just after other carriers (eg SN Brussels, Emirates) start flying to Abidjan, and Air France seems to still keep higher rates for these dates, but a couple of weeks later Air France’s rates are more competitive.

With the crisis ending and the economy picking up, more carriers should start flying to Abidjan and flight prices should go down. Hopefully it will soon cost as much to fly to Abidjan as to Accra.

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5 thoughts on “Flights to Abidjan

  1. Very interesting. I’m looking for advice on applying for an Ivory Coast visa right now, I am kind of in a rush and have not yet had to time to make contacts there, I was wondering if having a reference in the Ivory Coast (its a field listed on the application) is very necessary to obtain visa (or a letter of invitation, notarized).

  2. I think it’s ok just to write a name of a hotel in that field, but treatment can be different from embassy to embassy. Or at least it used to be, with the new administration they might be sorting out things.

    In Sweden visas to the Ivory Coast are (surprisingly) handled by the FOREX currency exchange offices which is very convenient and I’ve always had them delivered speedily without any problems. It’s just weird to go in there and ask for a visa to the Ivory Coast – you just expect them to give you a strange look and wonder why on earth you thought this was the right place. Instead they think for 3 seconds, say no problem and give you the forms to fill in.

    Otherwise, the cheapest option is if you have somebody in the Ivory Coast who can help you, that person can go to the relevant Ministry in Abidjan and get a visa/entry paper and fax it to you. This paper allow you to enter via the airport, but they take your passport upon entry, and then you pay 20,000 CFA to get the paper converted to a visa in your passort and get the passport back at the relevant ministry 4-5 business days later.

  3. Pauline

    Word has it that Ble Goude is dead. He can be seen pushed into the Golf Hotel with a head injury on a video which the Ouattara camp is trying to keep off Youtube. If you have seen the last known footage of Desire Tagro it is easy to surmise what must have happened to CBG. Tagro was last seen in the back of a military car with a horrendous injury to his face which suggests he has been shot through the jaw — and which totally disqualifies the rumor of his alleged suicide. Remember the last that was said about CBG was that he was “between life and death” — even if that comment came from the radical pro-Gbagbo spokesman Alain Toussaint.

  4. Yeah, I had kind of stopped taking anything Alain Toussaint said seriously. But it was actually him breaking that Gbagbo was arrested. I remember thinking that since Alain T said Gbagbo was arrested by the French, then most certainly Gbagbo was still a free man. It turned out it was only the “by the French” part that wasn’t entirely correct.

    And I’m with you on Ble Goude, hadnt heard about that video before though.

  5. Pingback: Flights to Abidjan May 2012 « Hotel Ivory

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