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Moving to Djibouti?

Join InterNations to meet other expats where you live and read more articles like Moving to Djibouti with relevant information for expats.

Brandon Le Clerk

Living in Djibouti, from South Africa

"Facing expat life in Djibouti was quite a challenge, but I'm really thankful for my new-found contacts in humanitarian circles. "

Sabine Baumeister

Living in Djibouti, from Germany

"Mingling with InterNations expats and residents of Djibouti helped me adjust the preconceptions I had about moving to Eastern Africa. "

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Djibouti at a Glance

Moving to Djibouti

While it has been historically marred by strife and poor development, Djibouti is a land of beauty, and offers some of the world's broadest biodiversity, even cultural. Therefore expats moving to the country will find a welcoming and multifaceted atmosphere. Find out more in our expat guide!

The Land and Its People

Members of the international community who are moving to Djibouti may find they acclimatize better by learning a little about the country's history. Situated between Ethiopia and Somalia, Djibouti acts as a strategic point for foreign armies seeking access to the Red Sea. As such, there is a heavy French military presence, which offers security to those who live there. Djibouti's location is one of the main contributors to its economy, as it acts as an easy way for Ethiopia to trade and access imports. Since 1994 there has been an end to the previous authoritarian state, but a shared government has failed to bring complete calm to the area. 

Djibouti has been occupied since the Neolithic era, and it has since gone through many periods of change. After gaining independence from France, the country had the choice between joining Somalia and becoming an independent state. Since then it has become a member of the African Union, which is an organization that aims to spur development and economic progress throughout Africa's member nations. Members of the multilingual population speak primarily Somali, followed by Afar, French, Omani Arabic, Greek, and Hindi. Around 94% of the country is Muslim, with the remaining 6% being Christian.

The Climate in Djibouti

Individuals moving to Djibouti will find that the climate is hot and arid, with very little rainfall. Daytime temperature averages range between 31–37°C (88–100°F), with an average rainfall of less than 5 centimeters. The hottest months fall between October and April, and temperatures may drop suddenly at night in desert regions. On average, there are 3,215 hours of sunshine per year, with most days featuring between eight and 10 hours of sunshine.

Getting to Djibouti

Most individuals who travel to Djibouti do so by air. Djibouti-Ambouli International Airport has links with several countries, including the United Arab Emirates, Ethiopia, Somalia, Eritrea, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Oman, and Madagascar. As such, most people who wish to relocate there from a western country will need to change flights in the process. There is a ferry service that connects to Yemen, and although it is possible to travel into the country via road, expatriates are advised that their personal safety may be at risk if they choose to do so. While getting around the country, it is possible to use Djibouti's limited rail and bus system. Bus stops are usually allocated on request, and a flat fare system is used. The railway system in Djibouti is consistently undergoing development to modernize it.

InterNations Expat Magazine