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Ethiopia - Apply for a Journalist Visa

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Journalist visa is issued to professional journalists and photographers for up to three months stay in Ethiopia. Journalists, film crews and professional photographers wishing to travel to Ethiopia must contact the Press Office at least 15 days prior to travel. Journalist Visitors to Ethiopia must obtain a journalist visa from one of the Ethiopian diplomatic missions unless they come from one of the visa exempt countries.


One must be a journalist visiting Ethiopia on the mission of gathering news or capturing news or Filming sites in Ethiopia on behalf of the foreign organization. This Visa is granted to the following category of people.

  • Professional journalist,
  • Columnist, cartoonist/editor,
  • Photographer,
  • Film producer or director (other than of commercial films),
  • A representative of a radio and/or television organisation,
  • Travel writer/travel promotion photographer etc or any
  • Professional journalist/owner working for an association or
  • A company engaged in the production or
  • Broadcast of audio visual news or
  • Current affairs programmes through the print, electronic or any other electronic form or any other mode of mass communication.

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  • if you intend to visit or film sites in Ethiopia, then you need to obtain a journalist Visa which include those sites in the list of the sites you intend to film.
  • If you secure permission from the Foreign Affairs Media Department for the whole list (as of the above procedure) then you can visit and film in all the sites approved in list.
  • It is therefore necessary to include all the sites you intend to visit in the list before you submit it to the Foreign Affairs media Department.

Required Information

  • Documents customs clearance for the equipments to be brought into the country.
  • A list of all the equipment to be brought into Ethiopia.
  • A valid passport for less than 6 months to expire.
  • Original application letters which were earlier submitted by email
  • Completed visa application with photo attached. The application form can be found on the following link.
  • Valid passport
  • Photocopy of passport
  • Visa fee of £14 per person, payable in cash, postal order and bankers draft only


In order to apply for a visa and permission to carry out their duties in Ethiopia, journalists, film crews, photographers and other media organisation members travelling to Ethiopia in a professional capacity must submit a formal application letter on letterhead and signed, stating the following details:

  • The purpose of visit and the kind of report the correspondent intends to carry out, locations to be visited including dates and times.
  • Details of the travelling journalist(s)/crew members including their full name, nationality, passport number and role.
  • For film crews, the letter should also include the title (working title) of the film, a script or synopsis, where you plan to film with dates, and a statement of production costs. Film crews are strongly advised to engage a fixer whose name and contact details must also be included, along with the date they are leaving Ethiopia and flight details.
  • Background of the media organization or individual. If you are travelling as a freelance journalist, you will also need to submit a CV of your work.
  • If you have been commissioned by a third party or charity/NGO, you will also be required to submit supporting letters from the company involved, including the company profile, in addition to the list above.
  • You must also submit a copy of your kit list, preferably with serial numbers.
  • Additional supporting documents may be requested at the Embassy’s discretion.

  • The letter has to be signed by a person authorised by the media organisation and should include should include the full name and contact details of the media organisation and the person who has signed the letter. For film crews, the letter should indicate the name and contact details of their production company and the name of the company/corporation that will broadcast their film.
  • If a film crew plans to carry out filming or photography from a plane or helicopter, permission must be sought in advance from the Civil Aviation Authorities.
  • Please note that after submitting your application, you will be required to come to the Embassy for a briefing with the Press Office. For film crews, this can be the director. For charities/NGOs taking in a journalist/film crew to Ethiopia, you will be required to accompany the journalist, director or photographer to the briefing.
  • On arrival back from the trip you will be expected to send a copy of the report you have filed to the Press Office. This can be in the form of a news story, an article, film, photos, etc.
  • Please also visit the Government Communications Affairs Office website for further information, who licenses all local and foreign crews undertaking filming in the country:

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Required Documents

  • Scanned Valid National Passport (minimum period validity 6 months at the time of travel)or any acceptable Travel document;
  • Printed copy of a completed Online Visa Application Form(with one passport size photograph attached), and a copy of Payment Confirmed page;
  • A letter of invitation from local contact(s) in Ethiopia;
  • A letter of introduction from the organization(s) that journalists work for or represent;
  • A copy of itinerary while on duty in Ethiopia;
  • List of equipment accompanying applicant(s);
  • Scanned copy of your passport's bio data page (the page with your photo).
  • Your profession.
  • Estimated date of arrival.
  • Payment.Visa Fee (cash only)Paid in advance
  • Application form
  • A valid Passport.
  • Two recent passport photos.
  • Visa reference number (from Nigeria).
  • Letter from employer.


Visa fee of £14 per person, payable in cash, postal order and bankers draft only.


  • This journalist visa is valid for 3 months only with a single entry. Regardless of the entry status, it can be renewed upon request.

Documents to Use

Please attach documents that can be used by people. e.g. links

Sample Documents

Please attach sample completed documents that would help other people.

Processing Time

  • Processing time take less than a one month but because of the complexity it can exceed that time. Visas for journalists cannot be fast-tracked and may take longer than five (5) working days to process;

Office Locations & Contacts

Government Communication Affairs.

Film shooting permit Council.

P.0.Box 1364

Physical Address:

Bole Road/Africa Avenue

Adjacent to Flamingo Restaurant

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

Tel- +251-115-52-81-13

Fax No- +251-1-1550-78-98

E-mail :

Ministry of Culture and Tourism

PO Box 1364, Addis

Ababa, Ethiopia

Tel: 00251115527582

Tel: 00251115512889

Immigration and Refugee Affairs Authority

P.O. Box 5741 Addis Ababa Ethiopia Telephone: (+251-11) 1553899

If not in Ethiopia, visit any embassy or consulate office of Ethiopia in your country of residence
Applicants from any state from US
Travisa - Los Angeles
6222 Wilshire Blvd, Suite 210
Los Angeles, CA 90048
Tel: (323) 932-7300
Fax: (323) 784-3818

Applicants from Connecticut, New Jersey and New York

Travisa - New York 290 5th Avenue, 4th Floor New York, NY 10001 Tel: (212) 613-2223 Fax: (212) 613-2287

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Videos explaining the procedure or to fill the applications. 
Attach videos using the following tag <&video type="website">video ID|width|height<&/video&> from external websites.
Please remove the "&" inside the tags during implementation.
Website = allocine, blip, dailymotion, facebook, gametrailers, googlevideo, html5, metacafe, myspace, revver, 
sevenload, viddler, vimeo, youku, youtube
width = 560, height = 340, Video ID = Can be obtained from the URL of webpage where the video is displayed.
e.g In the following url "" Video ID is "Y0US7oR_t3M". 

Information which might help

  • On arrival in Ethiopia, film crews can pick up their film permit at the Government Communications Affairs Office, Media Licensing Department with two recent passport size photographs of each crew member and the relevant fee to accompany the application. The cost of a film permit is a tiny percentage of the production costs.

Other uses of the Document/Certificate

Please explain what are other uses of obtaining this document/certificate.
e.g. Birth Certificate can be used as proof of identity.

External Links


More information which might help people.
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