COVID-19: Stay up to date with our coverage on the coronavirus pandemic. Read more >



Sao Tome And Principe Travel Information

The Basics


Local time in Sao Tome and Principe is GMT.


Electrical current in Sao Tome and Principe is 220 volts, 50Hz. A variety of plugs are in use including the European-style two-pin plug and Schuko two-pin.


The official language is Portuguese, and French is widely spoken, along with local languages.

Travel Health

Hepatitis A, typhoid, yellow fever, measles-mumps-rubella, and tetanus are all recommended as pre-travel immunisations. Cholera vaccinations are not generally necessary for travel to São Tomé and Príncipe. Schistosomiasis may be acquired through contact with contaminated water, and travellers are advised to avoid swimming, wading, or rafting in bodies of fresh water, such as lakes, ponds, streams, or rivers.

Malaria is not as common a concern as it once was in São Tomé, however visitors are still advised to take precautions, including insect repellent, netting, and antimalarial tablets. Either mefloquine (lariam), atovaquone/proguanil (malarone), or doxycycline may be taken. It is recommended to wear long sleeves, long pants, hats, and closed shoes in forested areas to prevent tick bites.

Medical facilities in São Tomé and Príncipe are extremely limited. The main healthcare facility is the Hospital Ayres de Menezes, located on São Tomé. Be advised that most doctors and hospitals will expect cash payment, regardless of whether you have travel health insurance. Serious medical problems will require air evacuation to a country with state-of-the-art medical facilities. It is also recommended that travellers carry a personal supply of basic first aid and antibiotics.

Local Customs

In São Tomé and Príncipe, customs are fairly casual and relaxed, but you shouldn't wear beachwear anywhere but on the beach. It is considered polite to ask a local's permission before taking their picture, and do not try to photograph the palace. São Toméans are very respectful of older people and those with high social status. It is considered a privilege to be invited into a person's home, and you should remove your shoes upon entering.

Duty Free

Visitors to São Tomé and Príncipe may import a reasonable quantity of tobacco and perfume for personal use. Alcoholic beverages and lottery tickets are prohibited.

Become our Sao Tome And Principe Travel Expert

We are looking for contributors for our Sao Tome And Principe travel guide. If you are a local, a regular traveller to Sao Tome And Principe or a travel professional with time to contribute and answer occasional forum questions, please contact us.