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Retirement in Senegal

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If you are planning to spend your retirement days in Senegal, here is an overview of related procedures.

Senegal has proven to be an ideal destination for many retired foreigners. In fact, the country has been attracting expatriates for many reasons, among which, its economic and socio-political stability, as well as the affordable cost of living. Moreover, Senegal is known as the land of Teranga for its inhabitants' legendary hospitality and friendliness, not to mention their relaxed lifestyle and open-mindedness. The country also provides an ideal climate if you are looking for the sun and mild temperatures amidst nature.

However, it is best to inquire on all related conditions and formalities beforehand if you are planning to settle there on a long term. Laws and customs, as well as the population's lifestyle, may be quite different to what you are used to. In short, you will have to ask yourself if:

  • a familiarization trip is requirement
  • you have the means to travel to Senegal and back to your home country
  • you are eligible to a long term stay authorization
  • you will find accommodation according to your criteria and how
  • you can purchase a property or you are compelled to rent
  • your home country has signed any tax treaty with Senegal
  • you will be eligible to health care services
  • there are specific health care services for foreigners
  • you are allowed to bring your car
  • you have to convert your driver's license
  • you can travel with your pet
  • your pension will be sufficient to support you during your stay in the country.

You are also advised to inquire in which neighborhoods most expatriates in Senegal have settled so as to make sure you will be able to adapt more easily to your new environment.

Procedures

Unless you wish to make less than three months between Senegal and your home country following your retirement, you will have to apply for a foreign identity card from the Senegalese authorities. Bear in mind that you are required to request for a paid biometric visa for each entry into the country if you have decided to make less than three month stays in Senegal. Fees of some 55 euros apply.

To make a more than three months stay in Senegal, you are required to apply for a resident card or Foreigner Identity Card which has a five years validity period. The following documents are to be produced:

  • your original passport along with a certified photocopy of the pages containing the picture, the expiry date and the arrival stamp in Senegal
  • a handwritten request for residence permit addressed to the Ministry of the Interior
  • a birth certificate issued less than six months prior to your visit
  • a criminal record issued in your home country
  • a medical certificate issued by a licensed doctor in Senegal
  • 3 passport-size identity pictures (3.5 cm x 4.5 cm)
  • documents proving your financial stability throughout the stay in Senegal
  • a CFA 15,000 stamp
  • the repatriation deposit receipt.

The resident card should be delivered within 6 months to a year. In the meantime, you will receive a receipt which will be valid for six months. This receipt can be renewed in case the resident card is not ready.

Repatriation deposit

Foreigners wishing to settle in Senegal are required to pay a repatriation deposit whose amount is determined according to your home country. Note that this deposit's role is to ensure your return to your home country. However, foreign nationals coming from countries having an agreement with Senegal in this regard do not have to pay the repatriation deposit. But in general, it is mandatory for all expatriates intending to settle there.

The deposit should be made at the Foreigners and Travel Documents Police Department. You will receive three leaflets: one intended for the police, another for the General Treasury and finally a third which will be given to you. Once you have received these, you have to call at the Public Accounting and Treasury General Directorate if you intend to make a cash payment. In case of payment by check, you will receive a declaration receipt. Once the payment has been settled, you will obtain your resident permit at the Foreigners Police Department.

Useful address:

Foreigners and Travel Documents Police Department

Dieuppeul - Driveway Sérigne Ababacar Sy
Dakar
Phone: 33 869 30 01/33 864 51 26 /
Open from Monday to Friday from 8 am to 1.30 pm and from 2.30 pm to 5.00 pm.

If you are in another city, contact the nearest police station to your place of residence.

Bringing your belongings

If you are planning to stay in Senegal for more than three months per year, you will probably wish to import your belongings. See the article “Moving to Senegal” for more information.

 Good to know:

You will not have to pay tax if your goods and belongings have already been used. Moreover, delivery and clearance procedures can take some time, up to one and a half or two months.

 Useful links:

Expat.com - Senegal Formalities Forum 
Ministry of Interior www.interieur.gouv.sn
Public service - Repatriation Deposit www.servicepublic.gouv.sn

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