Portuguese in Angola


A lost and found sign

Although it is possible to call a hospital or some of the clinics for an ambulance, friends or family members usually choose to transport the injured person to the nearest clinic or hospital when possible. Given the density of traffic, when driving in an emergency, it is essential to lean on the horn and put on emergency blinking lights.

Public hospitals tend to be less expensive, but the standards of hygiene and efficiency can be lower than the private hospitals. Private hospitals may have more bureaucratic procedures to attend to before treating an ailment. In an emergency it is up to the individual which to choose, but, when possible, it is best to ask advice. For minor ailments, one should ask an Angolan friend to call a neighborhood clinic to make an appointment.

The police are a varying presence in Angolan culture, at times very visible and other times not. Foreigners should be forewarned to keep their papers in order and not to drive under the influence of alcohol to avoid any undue treatment by authorities. In general, one does not want to come to the attention of the police.

The prevalent crime on the street is theft, and travelers are cautioned to use normal common sense: never carry excessive cash; be vigilant with purses, and do not appear in public with a lot of expensive jewelry. As well, it is important to know the kind of neighborhood one is either in or going to and proceed wisely.