Addis Ababa Expat City & Insurance Guide
Addis Ababa is the capital city of Ethiopia, which is Africa’s oldest country. As the largest city in the country, Addis Ababa has a population of about 3,384,569 residents. The headquarters of the African Union and over a hundred international embassies are in Addis Ababa. Therefore, Addis Ababa is usually referred to as the Capital of Africa. In recent years, the city has experienced a very fast rate of urban. Also, IMF (The International Monetary Fund) has ranked Ethiopia among the top five growing economies in the world.
Expats working and living in Addis Ababa may find the technology industry is thriving. Many companies and organizations are seeking English-speaking expat employees with internationally training background. There are also many expat NGO and aid workers in Addis Ababa.
Vegetables and spicy meat dishes are typical Ethiopian cuisine. One of the best-known food is injera, a spongy pancake made from teff grain flour. Yod Abyssinia is the top choice to enjoy Ethiopian traditional food. Musicians and dancers will often perform Ethiopian traditional dances at restaurants. Another popular choice would be 2000 Habesha Cultural restaurant. They offer excellent local food choices.
There are many luxury brands and boutiques in Addis Ababa. If you want something local, Shiro Meda, a place where hundreds of vendors sell traditional dresses and arts will be your top choice. Traders at Shiro Meda also sell souvenirs, accessories and crafts. The local markets sell a range of goods such as jewellery, baskets, vegetables, fruits and Ethiopian wine. There are also many barbecue stalls.
Although the government is improving local state-run healthcare facilities, Addis Ababa’s medical system is still developing. There are 37 hospitals in total in the city. Except for the six government owned and operated, 31 hospitals are private. Most expats prefer to use private medical facilities in Ethiopia. It is very important for expats to obtain international health insurance when residing in Addis Ababa and other regions of the country. You should definitely consult a medical professional about vaccinations before residing or travelling to the city. Usually, the required vaccinations are Yellow fever, Typhoid, Hepatitis A, Diphtheria and Meningococcus, but you should check with your medical expert.
4. Safety & Security
Although there is no nationwide advisory in effect for Ethiopia, visitors and expats should exercise a high degree of caution. The road network has significantly improved in Addis Ababa, however, expats and tourists should pay attention to excessive speed and local driving habits. Traffic accidents occur regularly in Addis Ababa and are perhaps your biggest safety concern when residing there.
According to many reports, terrorism and violent incidents occurred in Addis Ababa. For example, on December 11, 2015, explosions and bombs in the Merkato area of Addis Ababa have left several casualties. Expats living in Addis Ababa should avoid visiting religious events or places of worship, any crowded areas and public places.
5. Insurance for Expatriates in Addis Ababa
International medical coverage is very important for expatriates if residing in Addis Ababa. Medical evacuation is vital if you are living in Addis Ababa or other parts of Ethiopia. A medical plan that will provide reimbursement for medical expenses via a large network of hospitals is recommended and some providers have excellent medical contacts and reimbursement options in the city. Many expats should also obtain global life and disability insurance coverage.
Here is a list of different types of insurance coverage you will want if you are planning to become an expatriate in Addis Ababa:
- International Health Insurance
- Expat Life Insurance and Disability Insurance
- Travel Insurance
- Evacuation Coverage
- Group Expat Insurance Plans