traveltips

Travel Tips - Zimbabwe

Getting into Zimbabwe

Please check with your nearest Zimbabwe Consulate for up to date information.

All visitors are required to carry a passport that is valid for six months beyond the intended length of stay. Passports should have at least 3 blank pages for entry and departure stamps.

Please contact your local Zimbabwean Embassy to establish whether a visa is required.

The KAZA (Kavango Zambezi) UniVisa covers travel within Zambia and Zimbabwe and available at major Airports in both countries. The UniVisa is available to citizens who are eligible to receive Visas on arrival in both Zambia and Zimbabwe. Please note from time to time, border posts run out of KAZA UniVisa stickers. If this happens, a single-entry, double-entry or multiple-entry visa can be obtained for each country that is being visited.

Please have USD in cash on hand to pay for Visa’s on arrival in case credit card machines are off-line.

An e-visa service is available online. Guests will receive a receipt upon payment to print and take along with them. Upon entry they need to provide the immigration officer with the visa receipt in order for the immigration officer to issue them with the visa in their passport.

Traveling with children

Regulations aimed at improving the safety of children travelling in and out of Namibia, South Africa and Botswana have been implemented. All children under the age of 18 will require an unabridged birth certificate together with a valid passport when travelling to or from any of the above mentioned countries, as well as travelers in transit with a transit visa. The following documents will be required when travelling:

Child and both parents
• An unabridged birth certificate (UBC)
• A valid passport for the child Child and one parent Parent must produce
• An unabridged birth certificate (UBC)
• A valid passport for the child
• A court order (where applicable) / death certificate (of any deceased parent reflected on the UBC) / affidavit confirming the absent parent has given permission for the child to travel. 
• Certified copies of both parents’ ID / passport.

Child and guardian 
Guardian must produce 
• An unabridged birth certificate (UBC) 
• A valid passport for the child 
• A court order (where applicable) / death certificate (of deceased parent/s reflected on the UBC) / affidavit confirming the parents have given permission for the child to travel. 
• Copies of parents / guardian ID / passport. 
• Contact details of parents / guardian

Child unaccompanied 
• An unabridged birth certificate 
• A valid passport 
• A court order (where applicable) / death certificate (of deceased parent/s reflected on the UBC) / affidavit from both parents or legal guardian confirming permission to travel. 
• A letter from the person who will receive the child including their full contact details and residential address and a certified copy of their ID / passport. 
• Contact details of parents / guardian.

Currency

The most commonly used unit of currency is the US$.

Money Matters

Banking hours
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday 8:00 – 15:00
Wednesday 08:00 – 13:00
Saturday 08:00 – 11:30

Credit cards
Credit card payments in Zimbabwe are subject to change daily. Currently, as only Visa cards are widely accepted, we recommend that you travel with a small amount of US Dollars or South African Rand in cash, in small denominations, to pay for incidental expenses.
Please note there is currently a shortage of hard currency in Zimbabwe which means tourists using dollars, euros or pounds to pay for activities, meals and curio items may not be issued with change in cash, but given Bond notes instead of dollars. The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe is introducing Bond notes to mitigate foreign exchange malpractices. Bond notes can only be used again in Zimbabwe. We therefore advise guests travelling to Zimbabwe to carry small denomination notes.

Weather

For full details on climate, please see Best Time to Go.

Clothing

Casual, comfortable wash-and-wear clothing is most useful. All hotels offer extremely quick laundry turnaround, usually within a couple of hours. It is certainly not necessary to bring a separate change of clothing for each day and evening, and it is recommended that you keep luggage to a minimum for your own comfort and ease of transport, especially if you are using light aircraft transfers.

  • Blouses with long sleeves (even in summer, they will protect you from the sun and the mosquitos)
  • Cotton t-shirts and tops
  • Shorts for the day. Jeans or chinos for evenings and cooler days
  • Fleece, sweater or warm jacket for game drives
  • Comfortable walking shoes (hiking boots are not necessary)
  • Sun block, sunglasses and hat
  • Camera, binoculars
  • Swimwear
  • A small alarm clock

If dining at the Livingstone Room at Victoria Falls Hotel, the gentlemen are required to wear jacket & tie and the ladies are required to wear smart dress. Layers are most practical for the fluctuating day/night temperatures of Zimbabwe. It is advisable that your clothing be as neutral as possible in the bush (beige and khaki is ideal). If you wear prescription glasses or contact lenses, we recommend that you bring an extra pair of glasses or a copy of the prescription.

Health

It is important that you check with a qualified health professional for the most current information concerning your travel itinerary and personal health history. Anti-Malarial precautions are an absolute necessity when visiting the game parks in the region. The sun in the southern hemisphere is extremely strong - do wear an effective sunscreen and hat during the summer.

It is advisable to avoid the midday sun. Recommended SPF is 30. Throughout Southern Africa it is safe to eat all foods and drink tap water in cities and towns. Purified water in flasks or bottled water is provided at game lodges throughout the region. It is also suggested that you bring a smaller traveler’s kit with remedies for minor stomach ailments or motion sickness.

You should include an adequate supply (in your hand luggage) of any prescribed medication you may require while traveling. Travelers with physical disabilities and those who require frequent or on-going medical attention should advise us of their health situation at the time of booking (or at the time such a situation occurs, should this be after the reservation is made). We do recommend that you take out comprehensive travel insurance to cover you in the event of a medical emergency.

Time Zone

GMT + Two (2) hours

Tipping

Tipping is not compulsory. If you are travelling on an independent itinerary and the cost of your program does not include gratuities. Tipping is a very personal matter and should only be considered when the staff have gone above and beyond for you. Should you feel you would like to acknowledge their service, please consider the following as a rough guide, per day.

Tour Director - 15
Driver / Guide (Half day) - 8
Driver / Guide (Full day) - 12
Hotel Porters - 5
Professional Guide -  15
Ranger - 15
Tracker - 8
Lodge staff - 12

Please note: Currency is in USD

The above tipping guidelines are recommendations only and are not compulsory. Please use your own discretion in tipping, based on quality of service.

Restaurants
It is customary to add 10% to the bill in restaurants, if the service has been satisfactory.

Taxis
Taxi drivers do not expect to be tipped but they appreciate the fare being rounded up.

Porterage
If you are being transferred by our representative from the airport to a hotel, then porterage and tipping of porters is already included. You are not expected to tip our representative. Porterage and tipping of porters for transfers from one hotel to another is as above.

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