Coronavirus travel health
Check the latest information on risk from COVID-19 for Cape Verde on the TravelHealthPro website.
See the TravelHealthPro website for further advice on travel abroad and reducing spread of respiratory viruses during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Entry and borders
See Entry requirements to find out what you will need to do when you arrive in Cape Verde.
Returning to the UK
Travelling from and returning to the UK
Check what you must do to travel abroad and return to England, Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland.
If you plan to pass through another country to return to the UK, check the travel advice for the country you’re transiting.
You should contact local authorities for information on testing facilities.
Be prepared for your plans to change
No travel is risk-free during COVID. Countries may further restrict travel or bring in new rules at short notice, for example due to a new COVID-19 variant. Check with your travel company or airline for any transport changes which may delay your journey home.
If you test positive for COVID-19, you will have to self-isolate for 14 days at home or at your hotel. If you continue to test positive, you may not be able to get a fitness-to-fly certificate. You may also need to seek treatment.
Plan ahead and make sure you:
- can access money
- understand what your insurance will cover
- can make arrangements to extend your stay and be away for longer than planned
Travel in Cape Verde
There are ferry and airline connections operating between islands. If you’re travelling between islands, you’ll need to complete an online health surveillance form and present a valid COVID vaccination certificate showing full vaccination, a COVID recovery certificate from the last 90 days, or a negative RT-PCR done 72 hours before departure or an antigen test done 48 hours before departure. Children up to the age of 12 are exempt from this requirement.
Cape Verde air and sea borders are open.
You’ll need a valid COVID vaccination certificate showing full vaccination, a COVID recovery certificate from the last 90 days, or a COVID-19 RT PCR test done 72 hours before departure or an antigen test (Ag-RDT) done 48 hours before departure to enter Cape Verde. If you do not present a COVID-19 test done in the required time before departure, you will not be allowed to board your flight. Children under 12 do not need to present a COVID-19 test.
You should not use the NHS testing service to get a test in order to facilitate your travel to another country. You should arrange to take a private test.
For international travel out of Cape Verde, you’ll need to check what the entry requirements are for the country you are travelling to on our travel advice pages. You can book your test online on all of the islands. This does not apply to children under the age of 12.
Tests are available at health centres and cost 6500CV Escudos (around £55). You can find a list of health centres online.
If you are travelling to or from Cape Verde and transiting other countries, you will need to check the travel advice pages of that country. You should also check with your airline or travel provider about entry requirements when transiting other countries.
Find accommodation that is suitable for your needs. Hotel and self-catering accommodation is available. Look for hotels that have been awarded the “Cabo Verde – Secure Tourism” certification.
Public places and services
Cape Verde is in a ‘state of alert’. The Cape Verde government has eased some of the restrictive measures previously in place, while maintaining the need to observe some rules on social distancing and hygiene:
- keep a social distance of at least 1m
- wash your hands regularly
- respect the rules on maximum occupancy in shops and services, restaurants, cafés and on public transport
If you test positive for COVID-19, it is still mandatory to self-isolate at your accommodation or in accommodation provided by the health authorities for 14 days. If you test positive but do not have any symptoms you will still need to self-isolate for 10 days at your accommodation.
With ongoing effect:
- Shops and stores close at 8:30pm, with the exception of pharmacies and bread shops which close at 9pm
- Bars, open-air cafés selling alcoholic drinks, restaurants, snack bars and takeaways close at 12am in most areas but 2am in pedestrianised and beach-front areas
- Lounge bars, night clubs and discos close at 4am
- Cultural, recreational, sporting and leisure activities and family events, such as weddings and christening, are permitted, subject to the rules on social distancing and hygiene
Use of COVID certificates and negative test results
The required use of COVID certificates and negative test results to access certain services and activities remains, including:
- to enter, lounge bars, night clubs and discos
- to use gyms
- to check in to hotels and other tourist accommodation (with the exception of children up to the age of 18 when accompanied by a parent or guardian)
- to attend cultural, sporting, corporate, recreational and family events (with the exception of children up to the age of 18 when accompanied by a parent or guardian)
There are three Cape Verde COVID certificates – one proving the holder has been vaccinated, one proving the holder has recovered from COVID-19 and one showing evidence of a negative COVID test.
If you are resident in Cape Verde, check whether you are eligible for a COVID certificate on the Cape Verde government website.
If you are not eligible for a Cape Verde COVID certificate, you may show a negative COVID test result, obtained by one of the following means:
- Certified PCR test done within the previous 72 hours
- Certified antigen test done within the previous 48 hours
Demonstrating your COVID-19 status
COVID-19 proof of recovery and vaccination records can be used for internal travel and to access services in Cape Verde. Cape Verde will only accept the UK’s letter version of proof of COVID-19 recovery and vaccination record. They will not accept digital proof. Your NHS appointment card from a vaccination centre is not designed to be used as proof of vaccination and should not be used to demonstrate your vaccine status
You must wear a face mask in enclosed spaces, such as shops and supermarkets, health centres, schools, airports and ports, cafes and restaurants and on public transport. You should wear your face covering when you enter the building and keep it on until you leave. In cafes and restaurants, keep your mask on until you are seated.
These measures apply to everyone over the age of 10.
You may be exempt from using a face mask on medical grounds if authorised by the health authorities.
Healthcare in Cape Verde
If you’ve got COVID-19 symptoms you must self-isolate at your accommodation or at a facility provided by the health authorities for 14 days. If you test positive for COVID-19 but do not have symptoms you will still need to self-isolate at your accommodation for 10 days. The government of Cape Verde has set up a free helpline, which you can call if you have any concerns about COVID-19: +238 (0)800 1112. This helpline is only available in Portuguese.
If you need medicine, you will only be able to buy it from a pharmacy. Unlike in the UK, non-prescription medication is not available in supermarkets or other shops. There are a limited number of pharmacies on each island and they are usually identified by a green cross. Find a pharmacy near you on the Pharmacy Network website.
If you have a UK prescription, take it to a pharmacy and ask the pharmacist whether they can dispense your medication for you. Remember the pharmacist will have to apply national rules so may not be able to give you the same strength or dosage. Some medicines may not be available or may not be authorised for sale in Cape Verde. In some cases, the medicine might not be in stock so they will need to order it. This can take up to a week or more.
If you need a repeat prescription, go to the nearest health centre or hospital A&E.
For contact details for English speaking doctors visit our list of healthcare providers.
Your emotional and mental wellbeing is important. Read guidance on how to look after your mental wellbeing and mental health
View Health for further details on healthcare in Cape Verde.
See also the guidance on healthcare if you’re waiting to return to the UK.
COVID-19 vaccines if you live in Cape Verde
We will update this page when the Government of Cape Verde announces new information on the national vaccination programme. You can sign up to get email notifications when this page is updated.
The Cape Verde national vaccination programme (in Portuguese) started in March 2021 and is using the AstraZeneca, Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines. The Government of Cape Verde has stated that British nationals resident in Cape Verde are eligible for vaccination, if they choose to join the programme. You can register online to be vaccinated or call the registration hotline on +283 (0)800 2008.
Find out more, including about vaccines that are authorised in the UK or approved by the World Health Organisation, on the COVID-19 vaccines if you live abroad.
If you’re a British national living in Cape Verde, you should seek medical advice from your local healthcare provider. Information about COVID-19 vaccines used in the national programme where you live, including regulatory status, should be available from local authorities.
If you need urgent consular assistance, contact your nearest British embassy, high commission or consulate. All telephone numbers are available 24/7. British nationals should contact the British Embassy Lisbon in Portugal.