Health Alert – U.S. Embassy Bamako, Mali – April 20, 2020

Location: Mali 

Event: Ongoing COVID-19 Response – Repatriation Flight on April 21

The U.S. Embassy is organizing a repatriation flight for April 21 from Bamako’s Modibo Keita International Airport to Washington Dulles International Airport in northern Virginia.  Registration for this flight has closed. Please direct questions to

Capacity on this flight is very limited, and not everyone who has expressed interest will receive a seat.  Seats will be allocated to American citizens and close accompanying family members. It is possible that some American citizens will not be able to be accommodated on this flight because of limited capacity.  There is no additional space available for Lawful Permanent Residents or travelers with visas.  Confirmed and standby passengers will be contacted by email the evening of April 20.

The cost for the flight is estimated to be $1672.85 for adults, $1341.85 for children, and $198.65 for infants.  Those that take the flight will have to sign a promissory note agreeing to reimburse the U.S. government for the price of the ticket. Please note, onward travel from Washington Dulles International Airport is the responsibility of the traveler.

The flight is tentatively scheduled to leave at 12:10 on April 21. There will be one stop to take on additional passengers in Cote d’Ivoire, and passengers will change planes in Togo.  Projected arrival at Washington Dulles International Airport is 3:30 a.m. on April 22. The flight schedules are subject to change. Confirmed passengers should ensure any connecting flights are booked for no earlier than 12 noon on Wednesday, April 22 in case of flight delays. Refundable/changeable hotel room reservations are also recommended if you need to stay near Dulles airport for your connection.

Other flight information:

·        Passengers should wear a mask and gloves in the airport in Bamako as well as while transiting in Lomé.

·        The luggage allowance for this flight is 2 checked bags with a maximum weight of 70 pounds per bag. You may also take a carryon and a small personal item.

·        Meals will be provided on the plane for passengers, but passengers are encouraged to bring snacks or food for special diets.

·        All children will be given an assigned seat. Children under 1 year old may sit on an adult’s lap during takeoff and landing. Older children may be in a car seat.

·        Passengers showing flu-like symptoms will not be allowed to board the aircraft.  Prior to landing in the United States, paperwork will be disseminated to passengers regarding appropriate health care procedures. Quarantine rules of the country you are entering apply. All international travelers arriving in the U.S. are recommended to stay home for 14 days after returning from travel, monitor their health, and practice social distancing. However, expect these recommendations to change based on onward destination within the U.S.

This will likely be the last repatriation flight that is organized by the Embassy, however we will continue to stay in close contact with the airlines to encourage commercial flight options. All information about future flights to the United States will be announced through the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP). If you are not enrolled in STEP, please register at

The U.S. Embassy in Bamako has suspended routine nonimmigrant visa appointments. Visit the Visas section of the Embassy website for updates.

The U.S. Embassy continues to offer routine and emergency American citizen services on a limited basis. Visit the U.S. Citizens Services section of the website to schedule an appointment. Please note, because of public health measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19, the U.S. Department of State has severely limited its passport operations. The Consular Section is still offering passport and Consular Reports of Birth Abroad (CRBA) appointments, but there will be significant delays in receiving these documents due to the limited production operations in U.S. passport centers. Please consider waiting to apply until we resume normal operations.

If you have previously applied for a passport or citizenship service, you should expect significant delays receiving your passport. Contact us at to check the status of your passport or citizenship document (such as a CRBA).

In an emergency, the U.S. Embassy can assist with an emergency passport for an adult or a minor. For emergency passport services, please contact us at to schedule an appointment.

Due to the possibility of an extended disruption, please refer to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website for the most recent information on what you can do to reduce your risk of contracting COVID-19.

The Government of Mali has announced that as of April 19 there are 224 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Mali, including 14 deaths and 42 recoveries.

The Government of Mali has implemented enhanced screening and quarantine measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19.  The government has prohibited flights coming from countries with confirmed cases of COVID-19 effective March 20 at midnight.  This led to cancellations of flights into and out of Mali.  The Malian government has also closed land borders to passenger traffic. Travelers should be prepared for additional travel restrictions to go into effect with little or no advance notice.

The Government of Mali has taken the following additional steps:

·        Schools and universities are closed until May 9, 2020.

·        Sporting events, festivals, and gatherings larger than 50 people have been banned, and bars and night clubs have also been closed.

·        There is a daily curfew from 9:00 p.m. until 5:00 a.m.

·        Vehicle occupancy has been restricted to promote social distancing.

·        The work schedule for all government offices (with the exception of defense, security, and health) has been reduced to 7:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Monday through Friday.

·        The General Directorate for Commerce and Competition set price limits for essential goods, including sugar, rice, cooking oil, and bread.

·        Operating hours of grocery stores, neighborhood shops, and open-air markets are limited through June 30, 2020. Open-air markets (including vegetable stands and livestock markets) are open from 6:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Monday through Sunday. Supermarkets and other food stores are open from 8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Small neighborhood shops are open from 6:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Monday through Sunday.

Visit the Malian Ministry of Health website for updated information on COVID-19 in Mali.

The Department of State has issued a Global Level 4 Health Advisory for COVID-19. The CDC has issued a Level 3 Global COVID-19 Pandemic Notice.

On March 14, the Department of State authorized the departure from any diplomatic or consular post in the world of US personnel and family members who have been determined to be at higher risk of a poor outcome if exposed to COVID-19. The Embassy has encouraged any Embassy staff with underlying health concerns to consider departing post. U.S. personnel were also advised to ensure they have sufficient supplies of prescription drugs on hand in case of future shortages.

U.S. government personnel are prohibited from leaving the City of Bamako.