International Freight Forwarding:
you are moving personal effects to Gambia from the UK,
USA or the EU, there are a number of overseas freight
forwarding companies who specialise in shipping household
goods to Banjul by sea & air freight. Among these
worldwide relocation firms are AGS Frasers, Redcoat
Express UK / USA, Global Shipping Net who can handle
household collection & overseas shipment of items
to the Port of Banjul or door-to-door.
Be aware that items can and do get stolen or go missing
on route to Gambia. Most of the time it is the smaller
items that are stolen when packing boxes get damaged.
To reduce the risk of this happening you should pack
the walls of the box with larger items and place the
smaller ones towards the middle.
If you decide to relocate by air cargo, this is a quicker
but more expensive choice. It would be necessary to
pack your personal belongings into smaller boxes. You
will still have to go through the Customs checks at
Advice on Choosing a Freight Moving Company
You should find at the bare minimum 3 separate moving
companies who are experienced with international moves,
and consider your options thoughtfully. Do not just
consider the price that a removals firm quotes you,
you should also consider the full range of services
they offer as well as security.
1) What type of insurance does the firm offer? What
is covered by the policy? Ask to see their insurance
copy documents and read the small print. Are you covered
by the policy until your goods are cleared from the
2) Ask about the companyís experience, how long have
they been in the international removals business and
do they have clearing agents in Gambia?
3) Write down the logistics of the removal. What time
will the pick up van arrive? Approximately how long
will it take to complete the loading process?
4) Does the firm have any references and can you contact
their former clients?
5) Is the company a member of any of the recognised
6) Find out where your items will be stored prior to
international shipment to Gambia and what is the security
situation at their storage depot.
7) Ask your removals company about all the required
Customs forms. Will they handle this for you and fill
out all forms? Are they authorised to do so?
8) Do ask about what restrictions the Gambia has. Do
your own research on this and make sure that it tallies
with the information you are provided with.
9) Does the quote inclusive of all charges, for example
destination port charges and destination customs clearances?
You tend to find that this is where a low quotation
from one company might turn out to be not so good, if
these charges are excluded from the firm's fee.
Shipping Cars to Banjul:
Take your time and do a lot of research on this issue.
Importation taxes on vehicles, for example, can vary
dramatically depending on the year and model of the
car. Here in the Gambia cars are left-hand drive while
in the UK cars are right-hand drive so you should consider
selling you vehicle and flying over to Amsterdam over
a weekend where you can buy a cheap second-hand car
and pay for shipment through Rotterdam en route to Banjul.
You may also want to consider buying a car in Gambia
as this would save you the hassle of going through customs
clearance at the port.
• How To Pack Boxes:-
1) If you are using used boxes, ensure you cover over
all print on the boxes with brown adhesive tape, otherwise
you can use plain moving boxes or wooden removals crates.
2) Ensure that there is adequate padding for fragile
items. Every box should be filled to full capacity to
minimise internal movement. Avoid using newspaper to
fill any gaps. Sometimes double boxing with foam in
between the voids is a good method for quite fragile
3) Do not pack any hazardous materials or restricted
items such as aerosols, alcohol, and even perfume. If
you are not sure of any item that might be restricted
for shipment, please contact your shipping agent.
4) All boxes should be closed and sealed with sturdy
5) Label each box with your full name and the shipping
address in Gambia. Be sure to number your boxes e.g.
1 of 10, 2 of 10 etc.
Note: This list is not exhaustive. These are just some
of the tips when packing crates and boxes for international
removals to Gambia.
How to Get to Gambia?
If you are an expatriate leaving from the UK to Gambia
on a charter flight you will fly from Gatwick airport
(or possibly Manchester) to Banjul. The flight takes
about 5 hours 40 minutes. Brussels Airlines flies to
The Gambia via Brussels (you need to change plane at
Brussels Airport). Once you have cleared immigration
in The Gambia there are porters available to help you
with your luggage - using a porter will speed your passage
through customs. It is helpful to inform the Customs
Inspector that you are coming to work in Gambia. A porter
will take your luggage to your waiting vehicle in the
car park and will expect a tip, $1 should suffice.
What do I need to do before I go?
You must have a full current passport. Most EU and Commonwealth
citizens can obtain a visitorís visa stamp in their
passport on arrival. This will be restricted (usually
to 14 or 28 days). For US citizens and French Nationals
a visa is required before arrival in The Gambia. Other
nationalities should check with their nearest Gambian
High Commission or their travel agent.
What should I take if I intend to stay in The
In the UK one can obtain VAT exemption for the majority
of items that are purchased for export outside the EU.
Please inform the retailer if you are planning to export
the goods to The Gambia so that VAT exemption forms
are completed at the time of purchase.