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Entry & Exit Formalities

Border formalities are fairly quick and straightforward. Regardless of where you enter, your passport must be valid for at least six months from your date of entry.

Customs Regulations

Importing or exporting dirham is forbidden, although checks are rare so don't worry about the loose change you may have at the end of a drink. Forbidden items include ‘any immoral items liable to cause a breach of the peace’, such as ‘books, printed matter, audio and video cassettes’.

Duty-free allowances:

  • up to 200 cigarettes, or 25 cigars, or 250g of tobacco
  • 1L of alcoholic drink
  • 150ml of perfume
  • presents or souvenirs worth up to Dh2000.

Visas

Visas are not generally required for stays of up 90 days.

Visas for Neighbouring Countries

Embassies for the following countries are in Rabat.

Algeria

  • Diplomatic disputes have kept the Morocco–Algeria border closed since 1994. The main border crossing was between Oujda and Tlemcen in Algeria. Don't hold your breath for positive developments on this front.
  • Visas are required by everyone except nationals of Arab League countries.
  • Algeria prefers applicants to apply in their country of residence.

Mauritania

  • Everyone, except nationals of Arab League countries, needs a visa to enter Mauritania.
  • At the time of writing, Mauritanian visas were being issued at the border for €120, but this frequently changes so check before travelling.
  • The Mauritanian embassy in Rabat issues 30-day visas (€120). Multiple-entry visas are sometimes available, but purely at the discretion of the consular officer on the day.
  • Visa applications are received Monday to Thursday 9am to 11am. Arrive well before the embassy opens and be prepared for queues. In the crowd of applicants, there's often someone organised enough to operate a list of those queuing – if so make sure your name is added, to keep your place in the queue.
  • You need two passport photos and a photocopy of your passport. Local fixers may approach you offering forms and help filling them in (and pointers to the nearest copy shop), for a small fee.
  • Visa costs and requirements can change regularly – for updates see Sahara Overland (https://sahara-overland.com/) or the North Africa forum at Horizons Unlimited (www.horizonsunlimited.com).

Spain

  • Spain is in the European Union and the Schengen Area.
  • The Schengen Area covers 30 European countries, including Spain and all other EU-member countries apart from the UK and the Republic of Ireland.
  • Ceuta and Melilla, the two Spanish enclaves in Morocco, have the same visa requirements as mainland Spain.
  • Nationals of EU-member countries do not need a visa to enter Spain.
  • Nationals of countries including Australia, Canada, Israel, Japan, New Zealand and the USA do not need a Schengen visa to cross a Schengen border.
  • Your passport will be stamped upon arrival in the zone, and you can then stay for up to 90 days (straight or cumulative) within 180 days. This means, for example, that when you leave the zone at the end of a three-month stay, you are not permitted to re-enter for three months.
  • For more information, see Spain’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation (www.exteriores.gob.es).

Visa Extensions

  • Travellers requiring a visa extension find it easiest to head to mainland Spain, or one of the Spanish enclaves in Morocco, and re-enter after a few days.
  • Although doing a visa run generally presents few problems other than travel costs, it leaves you at the mercy of individual immigration officers on re-entry. Travellers have occasionally come unstuck this way.
  • An alternative is to apply for a visa extension, issued by the Directorate General of National Security. In practice, these are unobtainable.
  • Residence (Carte de Sejour) is also available, but it is difficult to get and requires proof of employment.
  • Go to the nearest police headquarters (Préfecture de Police) to check what documents they require. If possible, take a Moroccan friend to help you deal with the bureaucracy.

International Health Certificate

An international certificate of vaccination (or yellow-fever certificate) is no longer required for entry into Morocco, even if coming from a country where yellow fever is endemic.

We recommend, however, that travellers carry a certificate if they have been in an infected country during the previous month to avoid any possible difficulties with immigration.

There is always the possibility that a traveller without an up-to-date certificate will be vaccinated and detained in isolation at the port of arrival for up to 10 days, or possibly repatriated.

Further Information

  • Holders of UK, EU, US, Canadian, Australian and New Zealand passports may remain in the country for 90 days on entry.
  • In all cases, your passport must be valid for at least six months beyond your date of entry.
  • Nationals of Israel and many Sub-Saharan African countries (including South Africa) must apply in advance for a three-month visa (single/double entry about US$30/50).
  • Applications are normally processed in 48 hours.
  • You need three passport photos.
  • In Morocco’s neighbouring countries, there is a Moroccan embassy in Madrid (Spain) and consulates-general in locations including Algeciras; an embassy in Nouakchott (Mauritania) and a consulate-general in Nouâdhibou; and diplomatic missions in Algeria including an embassy in Algiers.
  • Further information, including a list of Morocco’s diplomatic missions, is available from the Moroccan Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation (www.diplomatie.ma/en).
  • As visa requirements change, it’s a good idea to check with the Moroccan mission in your country or a reputable travel agency before travelling.