Getting to Chad

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Air France, Ethiopian Airlines, and Afriquia (Libyan) all serve Chad. Unlike 20 years ago when you had a choice of 2 or 3 flights a week, now you can fly into Chad pretty much any day of the week you want. With all due respect for the other two, we recommend you take the Air France flight, though it costs an arm and a leg - more than $3000 in 2010.

From Chicago, you'll have an overnight 8 hour trip to Paris - arriving at about 8 am local time - and then an all-day layover. If you're adventuresome like Diane, you catch a train and go into the city to see the Eiffel Tower or eat crÍpes. On the other hand, if you're like Mark, you're just as happy to avoid the adventure and spend the day in the airport - knowing that the adventure will find you sooner or later in any case so there's no sense in provoking it. The route to Chad - Chicago, Paris, N'djamena



Around 4 pm, you board the flight to N'Djamena - about 5 hours or about the same length as a New-York to LA flight in the states. 

Arrival at N'djamena airport can be a bit of shock to the system. It has never failed to make an impression on us - even after many years and numerous trips. The heat, the soldiers with their assault weapons, the tension of going through customs, and just the thought of being in what is very much a frontier outpost in the heart of Africa. 

The plane parks a good 200 yards from the the terminal, which is actually pretty nice, and quite modern, even if it has only two gates - one gate for arrivals and one for departures. 

Unlike the USA, where they make you "declare" what you are bringing in, and then for the most part take your  word for it with the promise of terrible consequences if they catch you lying, In Chad they just open each of your suitcases to see for themselves.  


World Map (minus the route) courtesy of
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Last modified: May 17, 2011