PLANNING YOUR TRIP
BEFORE YOU TRAVEL TO UGANDA MIND ABOUT THESE!
Volunteer cost may also contribute to the projects you work on, such as:
- Football Academy
- Building Classroom
- Water sources
- Buying bicycle for the kids come from a long distance
In addition to airfare the volunteer cost to stay at BACOP ranges from $600 USD – $2000 USD.
It’s recommended that you bring $50–$200 USD in spending money per week. This will come in handy for bottled drinking water, phone and Internet costs, snacks or treats, and leisure activities such as safaris or white water rafting.
The currency in Uganda is the Ugandan shilling. For personal spending money, bring a combination of cash and credit cards. There are a number of banks in Mukono Town with ATMs, and there is also a Western Union if you need to have some money wired to you. There are many foreign bureaus in Uganda where you can exchange your money. We recommend you bring large denomination bills in order to attract the best exchange rate.
Passport, Visa, Flight
You will need a valid passport to visit Uganda. It is recommended that you apply for your visa prior to traveling to Uganda. Tourist visas are available upon arrival. However, you should check with your airline to see if they require a visa for Uganda before you board the plane, as some will. You can apply for a single entry three-month visa or a multiple-entry visa. Most of our volunteers declare themselves as a tourist.
Customs agents automatically give you approval to be in the country for 30 days, so you will need to specifically ask for a 90-day visa if you plan to travel in Uganda for longer. If you are not granted 90 days upon arrival there is no need to worry. You can always travel out of Uganda for a day or two (into either Rwanda or Kenya for example) and then come back in to Uganda and extend your visa when you apply for a new one. There are regular buses to these countries and it is worth the trip. You will need to purchase a new visa every time you enter Uganda. So if you are planning on doing a lot of travel outside of Uganda it is recommended you apply for a multiple-entry visa.
To be granted a visa, you will need to prove you have had your Yellow Fever vaccination by providing officials with a Yellow Fever certificate. The website below provides additional information.
Embassy of the Republic of Uganda – USA
You will need to book your flight to arrive at Entebbe Airport. Moses will be there holding a sign with your name on it when you arrive. He will then take you to organize things like money exchange, phone and Internet requirements, and anything else you need. We also encourage you to register with your embassy while you are in Uganda, in case of the event of any civil unrest.
Health & Vaccinations
You are strongly encouraged to make an appointment with your health care provider at your earliest convenience, to discuss your trip to Uganda. Some vaccinations are needed well in advance of your departure.
You must have a Yellow Fever vaccination before traveling to Uganda. There are a number of other vaccinations that you may want to consider including: Polio, Hepatitis A and B, Rabies, Tuberculosis, Cholera, and Typhoid. We also recommend you take preventative Malaria medication while you are here. Malaria is entirely preventable and the medication is quite inexpensive by western standards. Consult your physician for guidance and instructions regarding all vaccinations.
BACOP we are not far from the international medical Centre and in the event of an emergency we will take you straight to the best hospital. If you feel sick, don’t ignore it. You can also go to the Mukono International Hospital, which is a western level clinic.
Most volunteers bring their own mobile phone handsets then buy a Ugandan SIM card when they arrive, and purchase prepaid “airtime” for the duration of their stay. The main providers are MTN, Orange, and Airtel Uganda.
Internet is available on the computer at BACOP if you need it, but as the computer is for business use, you will probably have more opportunity to use the Internet at your leisure if you visit the Internet cafes. There are many Internet cafes close by. A number of volunteers also bring their own laptops and purchase wireless or Hotspot Internet while they are here. This is also a good option.
English is the official language of Uganda and BACOP teaches their curriculum in English. However most people in the villages do not speak English and many people in Mukono speak both languages. The main language spoken in our communities is Luganda. People in Uganda will be more than happy to help teach you and will be excited to hear you say “Thank you” in the local language. You can learn more about Luganda here.
Ugandans will insist it is never winter in Uganda. And they are right! It’s hot and dry in January and February, warm with slight rain in April and May, warm with more rain in June and July, hot and dry in August and September, and warm and rainy from October to December. Daily temperatures range from 20C – 30C or 70F – 80F.
Can I talk to a previous volunteer about their experience?
Yes, absolutely! Please contact us and let us know you’d like to chat with a volunteer.