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Morocco handy guide for expats

Morocco handy guide for expats

Living in Morocco

Morocco’s cultural landscape is as diverse as its geography. Containing coasts, mountains and desert, this North African country displays the traditions that has been passed down from generation to generation. From souqs, medinas, to hospitality and cuisine, Moroccan culture, although faceted with other influences, is distinctly unique. Morocco is not only a dream destination of tourists, but also home away from home for longtime expats. Taking a journey out here? Take a look at our handy guide. 

Morrocco Marrakesh

Expat Clubs


American International Women's Club of Casablanca     
AIWC Casablanca Mission statement is to provide financial and other support to those, in Morocco, who are most vulnerable; to promote a better understanding of Morocco; and to unite English-speaking women of all nationalities, especially in welcoming newcomers to our community.
Website: www.casablancaaiwc.org  
 
American Women Living in Morocco (Yahoo Group)
Email: American_Women_living_in_Morocco@Yahoogroups.com
Website: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/American_Women_Living_In_Morocco
 
Thaqafat Association
Thaqafat Association is a non-profit intercultural Moroccan organization whose objective is to provide cultural exchanges, both international and between the diverse socio-cultural, historical, religious, and ethnic aspects of Morocco.
Address: Residence Hind, 1st floor Apartment 4 Street Loubnane Ocean, Rabat, 10000 Rabat, Morocco
Tel: +212 5 37 73 69 05
Fax: +212.537.20.23.67
Email: thaqafat@mtds.com
Website: www.thaqafat.org.ma

International Schools 


Casablanca American School
Casablanca American School (CAS) embraces an American Educational system of teaching that offers an International Baccalaureate program in a learning environment that nourishes your children’s unique qualities.

Curriculum: American, International Baccalaureate
Address: Route de la Mecque, Lotissement Ougoug, Quartier Californie, Casablanca, Morocco, 20150
Tel: +212-522-79-39-39
Fax: +212-522-21-24-88
Email: contact-cas@cas.ac.ma
Website: www.cas.ac.ma
 
George Washington Academy Casablanca
GWA opened in 1998 with 52 students; today we have more than 790 students from 39 nationalities taught in their purpose-built campus by a majority of North American instructional staff. The school received full accreditation by the Middle States Association in 2009.

Address: Km 5,6, Route d'Azemmour - Casablanca, Morocco
Tel: +212 522 953 000, +212 529 003 185, +212 522 953 034
Email: info@gwa.ac.ma
Website:  www.gwa.ac.ma

Local News in English


Morocco News Mirror
Morocco Mirror is a Moroccan e-newspaper that offers English community the latest Moroccan news and practical information about Morocco: politics, business, Sports, entertainment and a whole lot more. Morocco Mirror informs, educates and entertains.
Website:  www.moroccomirror.com
 
Morocco World News
This is an English-Language news site covering regional and global news events.
Website: moroccoworldnews.com

Country Information 


Location: Africa
Capital City: Rabat
Other Important Cities: Casablanca, Essaouira, Fes, Marrakech
Currency: Dirham
Language: Arabic, Tamazight
Calling Code: 212
Internet TLD:  .ma
Electricity: Morroco runs on 127/220V 50Hz. Electricity is mainly provided by the state-owned Office National de l’Electricite et de l’eau Potable ONE.
Website (French): www.one.org.ma

Emergency Numbers:
 Ambulance: 15
Fire: 15
Police: 19

Country Information
en.wikipedia.org   

Embassy Information


embassy.goabroad.com/embassies-in/morocco

Residents Visa and Work Permit information


Nationals from certain countries including the US and the EU may enter and stay in Morocco for up to 90 days. The Moroccan consulate in New York site has a list of countries with visa exemptions: www.moroccanconsulate.com/visa.cfm

Other nationals from countries not included in the visa waiver must apply for a visa at a Moroccan embassy or consulate in their home or host country.

Documents Required (but not limited to):
  • A visa application form duly signed and filled out in capital letters
  • Original passport (valid for over 6 months at the entry date)
  • Copy of the original passport (Pages 1-3)
  • Two passport size color photos with a white background
  • Copy of the round trip plane tickets or of the confirmed reservation
  • Hotel reservation or notarized Letter of Invitation from your host in Morocco
  • For applicant married to Moroccan citizen, a copy of the marriage certificate and a copy of the Moroccan passport or national ID of the Moroccan spouse, can be a substitute for the invitation letter or for the hotel reservation
It is possible to extend one’s stay in Morocco beyond 90 days. Expats must apply for a Certificat d’Immatriculation or a resident’s permit at a Commisariat Central or the Buerea des Etrangers. 2 copies of legalized documents are required, these are:
  • Completed application form
  • Criminal record check
  • Birth Certificate
  • Medical Certificate
  • Bank Statements
10 Passport size photographs are also required. This permit is valid for three months and renewable.

Accommodation


The cost of living in Morocco is relatively low compared to Europe and North America. Expats both rent and buy properties, depending on the purpose and duration of their stay in the country.  Apartments for sale go for as low as $35,000. Apartment rentals are as low as $325. Cityred Morocco is a leading real estate service provider first opened in England. They have a variety of listings across main Moroccan cities: cityredmorocco.com

Marrakech, the capital of Morocco holds a distinct charm among tourists. Moroccan culture is so embedded and evident in this city, it’s a total immersive experience. Traditional marketplaces, old-fashioned vendors and unwavering hospitality, the city is a welcome breath of fresh air from expats who needs to something different; metropolitan yet reflective of heritage.

The other city, Casablanca is the opposite of Marrakech. Its namesake Hollywood film does not do it justice; this city is the economic and commercial center, the progressive side of Morocco. Expats who are looking for the same Western amenities such as bars, clubs and hip restaurants and hang-outs, will find it in this Casablanca, thanks to its openness to European and American popular culture. They will also find the same traffic jam and buzzing sound of the city moving fast. Despite the city’s plunge into the fore of commercialism, it managed to retain its roots through historical architecture and environment.

Driving License


Expats may use their domestic license and an international driving license is recommended to drive legally in Morocco. This applies to tourists and those on short-stay visas. However for those extending their stays, long-term or permanently, a Moroccan driving license must be acquired from the Ministry of Equipment, Transport and Logistics>>

The US Passports and International Travel site has issued this caution about driving in Morocco:

Traffic accidents are a significant hazard in Morocco.  Driving practices are very poor and have resulted in serious injuries to and fatalities of U.S. citizens.  This is particularly true at dusk during the Islamic holy month of Ramadan, when adherence to traffic regulations is lax, and from July to September when Moroccans resident abroad return from Europe by car in large numbers. Congested streets are characteristic of urban driving.  Drivers should also exercise extreme caution when driving at night due to poor lighting systems along roads.  Traffic signals do not always function, and are sometimes difficult to see.  Modern freeways link the cities of Tangier, Rabat, Fez, Casablanca, and Marrakesh.  Two-lane highways link other major cities.

-          From the US Passports and International Travel site>>

Healthcare


Healthcare in Morocco is up adequate and most are up to Western standards, especially those in major cities. Non-serious treatments are also in good supply. Medical specialties are limited. Emergency services are more reliable in major cities. Prescriptions drugs should be stocked as these may not be available.

Insurance Companies
Cigna Global Health Options
Cigna Global Health Options specialise in providing expatriate health plans that are designed to give comprehensive overseas medical cover for people who are living and working abroad. They provide medical evacuation insurance cover.
Website: www.cignaglobal.com
 
Hospitals
Centre Hospitalier Ibn Sina Rabat
Ibn Sina Hospital Center is a public institution whose Board of Directors is chaired by the Prime Minister. It is composed of ten supervised and coordinated by Directorate General hospitals.
Address: Street Lamfadel Cherkaoui Rabat Institute, Rabat, BP 6527, Morocco
Tel: +212 05 37 67 64 64
Fax: +212 05 37 77 58 56
 
Centre d’Oncologie Al Azhar
The clinical Azhar is a private institution authorized by the Ministry of Health, located to the west of Algiers, Dély Ibrahim new district full expansion.
Address: Djenane Achabou-N 4-DELY IBRAHIM 16320, Morocco
Website: www.cliniquealazhar.com
 
Centre Hospitalier Mohammed VI Marrakech
Address: Avenue Ibn Sina, Ammerchich – Marrakech
Tel: +212 (0)5 24 300 700 / 701 / 629
Fax: +212 (0)5 24 300 631
Email: webmaster@chumarrakech.ma
Website: www.chumarrakech.ma/en
 
Centre Hospitalier et Universitaire Hassan II Fes
Address: B.P. 1935, Atlass, Fes, Morocco
Tel: +212 535 61 90 52
Fax: +212 535 6190 53
Email: chufes@menara.ma
Website (French): www.chufes.ma
 
Polyclinique Les Narcisses
Address: 112 Route de Targa, Quartier O.L.M. Camp El Ghoul, Marrakech, Morocco
Tel: +212 24 42 31 47
Fax: +212 24 42 35 38
 
Clinique Chirurgicale Anoual
Address: 14 rue Zaki Eddine Attaoussi, Casablanca, Morocco
Tel: +212 2 286 0207
Fax: +212 2 286 0211

 

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