US State Dept Travel Advisory

The US Department of State currently recommends US citizens exercise normal precautions in Sao Tome and Principe. Consult its website via the link below for updates to travel advisories and statements on safety, security, local laws, and special circumstances in this country.

Passport/Visa Requirements

US citizens should make sure their passport will not expire for at least 6 months after they enter the country even if they do not intend to stay that long. They should also make sure they have at least 1 blank page in their passport for every entry stamp and or visa that will be required; holders of a valid U.S. passport do not require a visa when visiting for a period of up to 15 days.

US Embassy/Consulate

Sao Tome and Principe does not currently maintain an embassy in the United States. Travelers transiting Gabon can obtain the latest information on entry requirements from the Embassy of São Tomé & Príncipe in Gabon, B.P. 49, Libreville, Gabon, telephone +(241)-72-15-27, fax +(241)-72-15-28. For all other inquiries, please contact Sao Tome and Principe’s Permanent Mission to the United Nations at 400 Park Avenue, 7th Floor, New York, NY 10022, +1 (212) 317 0644.

Telephone Code


Local Emergency Phone

2-22-22-22; Fire: 112


Proof of yellow fever vaccination is required to enter Sao Tome and Príncipe if traveling from a region with yellow fever. See WHO recommendations.


tropical; hot, humid; rainy season October to May

Currency (Code)

Sao Tome and Príncipe dobra (STN)

Electricity/Voltage/Plug Type(s)

220 V / 50 Hz / plug types(s): C,F

Plug Type C,F

Major Languages

Portuguese 98.4% (official), Forro 36.2%, Cabo Verdian 8.5%, French 6.8%, Angolar 6.6%, English 4.9%, other Portuguese-based Creoles are also spoken

Major Religions

Catholic 55.7%, Adventist 4.1%, Assembly of God 3.4%, other 6.2%, none 21.2%

Time Difference

UTC 0 (5 hours ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)

Potable Water

Opt for bottled water

International Driving Permit


Road Driving Side


Tourist Destinations

Obo National Park; Pico de Sao Tome; Rolas Island; Boca de Inferno; Jale Beach; Principe Ecological Zone

Major Sports


Cultural Practices

Manners and etiquette are considered important; greeting a person and inquiring about his or her health and family is essential in social encounters. Older people tend to be treated with great respect, particularly if they have many children and grandchildren. Entry into a person's home or garden is a privilege; acquaintances often converse in the road or across a garden hedge rather than enter a house or yard.

Tipping Guidelines

Tipping in Sao Tome and Principe is part of the culture. While it is normal to tip the different service providers, if the service you are receiving is not good, you may decide to give a tip lower than what is stated as the normal tipping amount or decide not to give any tip at all; average tipping percentage in restaurants is between 7% to 13%, between 8% to 20% for taxi drivers, and between 2.00 to 5.00 USD/EURO/GBP in hotels.


Carved wooden masks and other tribal items, stamps, tortoise-shell jewelry and decorative items

Traditional Cuisine

Calulu de peixe (Fish calulu) — a smoked fish stew which combines various vegetables cooked in red palm oil with okra and sweet potato leaves; traditionally accompanied by rice or funje (a creamy cassava porridge)

Please visit the following links to find further information about your desired destination.

World Health Organization (WHO) - To learn what vaccines and health precautions to take while visiting your destination.

US State Dept Travel Information - Overall information about foreign travel for US citizens.

To obtain an international driving permit (IDP). Only two organizations in the US issue IDPs:
American Automobile Association (AAA) and American Automobile Touring Alliance (AATA)

How to get help in an emergency? 
Contact the nearest US embassy or consulate, or call one of these numbers:
from the US or Canada - 1-888-407-4747 or from Overseas - +1 202-501-4444

Page last updated: Wednesday, October 05, 2022