Health Alert: U.S. Embassy Cotonou, Benin

Health Alert:  U.S. Embassy Cotonou, Benin (May 14, 2020)

Location:  Benin


On May 12, the Government of Benin announced mandatory COVID-19 testing of all airline passengers arriving in Benin.  Tests will be done at passenger expense; fees are 100,000 CFA (approximately $165/€153), payable in cash only, and airlines may require advance payment as a condition of boarding.  Passengers will be required to self-isolate for at least 48 hours until all results have been confirmed negative, and may be subject to additional testing after 15 days.  Those who test positive for COVID-19 will be subject to government-mandated isolation measures, which may include quarantine in a government-designated hotel at passenger expense.  The Government of Benin said it will hold passengers’ passports until all testing and isolation requirements are met to ensure compliance.

Air France is offering limited flights between Cotonou and Paris.  These flights are tentatively scheduled weekly on Thursday mornings.  Passengers who wish to return to the United States must be able to secure a connecting onward flight from Paris to a destination in the United States.  Those interested in learning more about this potential opportunity should contact Air France directly at +229 98 45 48 48 or 51 33 85 21, or visit the local Air France office at 1030 Avenue Jean-Paul II, Route de l’Aeroport, BP 905.

There are no other known commercial flight options to depart Benin at this time.  Passengers whose flights were previously cancelled should contact their airline directly for information about rebooking options.

U.S. Embassy Cotonou has reduced operations to emergency services only until further notice.  U.S. citizens with emergencies, including passport emergencies, should contact American Citizen Services at, or call +229 21 36 75 00 and press 0 to speak to an operator.

Actions to Take:

  • Consult the CDC website for the most up-to-date information.
  • Visit the Government of Benin’s COVID-19 website (in French), or call the Government’s COVID-19 hotline at 51 02 00 00 / 51 04 00 00 for information on current government measures.
  • Follow all government and law enforcement procedures and instructions.
  • Visit the COVID-19 crisis page on for the latest information regarding foreign countries’ quarantine requirements and other global impacts.
  • Make plans to depart Benin without U.S. Government assistance.
  • Prepare to shelter in place for an indefinite period of time if remaining in Benin, including ensuring you have an adequate supply of prescription medication.
  • Visit our Embassy webpage on COVID-19 for information on conditions in Benin.
  • Visit the Department of Homeland Security’s website on the latest travel restrictions to the United States.
  • Check with your airlines regarding any updated information about your travel plans and/or cancellations, and restrictions of future tickets.