Algeria is a North African country with a Mediterranean coastline and a Saharan desert inland. Algeria is the 10th-largest country in the world, and the largest in the Arab world and Africa. Many empires have left legacies here, such as the ancient Roman ruins in seaside Tipaza. In the capital, Algiers, Ottoman landmarks like circa-1612 Ketchaoua Mosque line the hillside Casbah quarter, with its narrow alleys and stairways. The city’s Neo-Byzantine basilica Notre Dame d’Afrique dates to French colonial rule. This little often visited country is an archaeological treat.
UK: Yes, from the Algerian Consulate in London. It will need to be obtained in person.
USA: Yes. Travellers must obtain a visa from an Algerian embassy or consulate in advance of any travel. If you have Israeli entry stamps in your passport, you may experience some difficulties, so plan ahead.
Algeria is an Islamic country, so to avoid negative attention and to protect from the sun, female travellers should wear loose clothing that covers the arms, legs, chest and the nape of the neck. It can get very hot in the summer months, so consider this while packing your suitcase.
Even if Arabic is the official language in Algeria, French is most commonly used in the workplace. As a result of 132 years of colonisation, Algerians speak and understand French, and they generally have a great sense of humour. Mutual trust can be built up during casual conversation. It is considered impolite to talk or joke about this as it infringes on personal, religious and cultural intimacy.
Tip for male travellers:
Algerian women will willingly talk about their children, husband, parents, and extended family, whereas most other subjects are considered impolite.
Arabic and French.
Tipping is not customary, however, since wages are generally lower, tipping is appreciated and one should consider a tip of 10% of the total bill, given directly to the waiting staff. Andante Travels will take care of gratuities to restaurant staff, local guides and drivers.