With a fluctuating terrorist threat throughout the country and banditry on the rise, having the right Mali insurance in place before you visit this West African country is essential. You should be particularly careful to secure comprehensive Mali insurance if you are planning to go against FCO advice and travel in the northern provinces.

Mali insurance – quick facts

  • There is a high risk of terrorism
  • Carefully consider your security arrangements before traveling to Mali
  • There is a high risk of kidnap – consider kidnap and ransom insurance International health insurance in Mali is essential, along with cover for emergency evacuation

Get the right insurance for Mali


  • Specialist Mali insurance – can include protection for personnel, property, vehicles and equipment
  • We can cover all of your business liabilities in Mali and help you to understand and meet contractual and local insurance obligations

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  • Due to limited medical facilities and the high-risk to personal security, specialist Mali insurance is advised for visitors and expats
  • We can cover you for life, personal accident, personal disability, medical emergencies, evacuation and other specialist insurance needs, including kidnap and ransom cover

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Some of the dangers you might encounter in Mali

Although certainly one of the most fascinating countries in Africa, Mali presents high levels of risk to foreign visitors. From the 1990s onwards it enjoyed a long period of steady growth and relative stability. However, in 2012 Islamist fighters in the north claimed large swathes of the country including Timbuktu. French military intervention pushed them back and ended the insurgency, but tensions remain extremely high.

In the Northern provinces, terrorism, banditry and kidnapping are a real threat, particularly for foreign nationals. Some hostages have been held for months; others have been killed. Landmines have been used by groups operating in these areas, so if you must travel here, it is best to fly. If travelling overland, use a reputable guide and travel only in daylight. Standard insurance will not be valid. You must arrange specialist Mali insurance before you go to these areas.

Petty crime occurs in many areas of Mali and robbery at gunpoint is another growing trend. Corruption is common – for example, the police may stop motorists and demand payment.

Medical facilities in Mali are very limited. Ensure your Mali insurance includes robust health cover. Take a sufficient supply of prescription medicines with you and be aware that medicine purchased in local markets may be counterfeit. Cholera and malaria are common, and meningitis outbreaks occur from the end of February to mid-April. Use only boiled or bottled water, avoid ice in drinks – and if you get diarrhoea whilst in Mali, seek immediate medical attention.



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The FCO advise against all travel to most regions of Mali and all but essential travel to all others. You should maintain a high level of vigilance, keep a low profile and stay alert to local political developments. Take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance before you travel.

Latest FCO advice