Money and Costs
Bargaining is normal (and expected) in all the markets, particularly in the capital, where the Arab influence from across the Red Sea is most felt. You should also haggle with the taxi drivers in the capital whose rates seem to fluctuate according to your nationality, naivety and negotiation skills.
ATMs in Djibouti City only. Credit cards accepted in top-end hotels.
- The unit of currency is the Djibouti franc (DFr). Coins are in denominations of DFr1, 2, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100 and 500. Notes are available in DFr1000, 2000, 5000 and 10,000.
- All the ATMs in Djibouti City accept Visa. ATMs accepting MasterCard are harder to find.
- Visa credit cards are accepted at some upmarket hotels and shops, and at some larger travel agencies and airline offices. Some places levy a commission of about 5% for credit-card payment.
- There are many banks and a couple of authorised foreign exchange bureaux in the capital. Outside the capital, banking facilities are almost nonexistent.
- The euro and the US dollar are the favoured hard currencies; euros and dollars in cash and an ATM card – preferably Visa – are the way to go.
For current exchange rates, see www.xe.com.
Service charges are generally included in the bill and tipping is not normally expected.
- Hotels DFr200 per bag is standard.
- Restaurants For decent service 5% to 10%.
- Guides/drivers DFr2000 per person per day.
- Car parks It's a good idea to tip the men who watch (and sometimes clean) your car. A tip of around DFr250 is appropriate.
Djibouti Franc (DFr)
Budget: Less than €80
- Budget hotel room: €40–60
- Sandwich: €5
- Bus ticket: €5
- Double room in a midrange hotel: €60–100
- Lunch in a midrange restaurant: €20
- Whale-shark-spotting excursion: €60
Top end: More than €300
- Luxury hotel room: €150-300
- Dinner in top-end restaurant: from €40
- Car hire per day: from €100