Zimbabwe: Visas & Health

VISAS & TRAVEL DOCUMENTS:

All visitors to Zimbabwe must have a passport which is valid for at least 6 months beyond their intended departure date from Zimbabwe. Visitors to southern Africa must ensure they have sufficient blank VISA pages (not endorsement pages) in their passports, with at least two consecutive/side by side blank pages. Our recommendation is 3 pages (or even 4 if you are travelling through more than one country on your journey). If there is insufficient space in the passport then entry into a country could be denied.

Most nationalities require a visa for entry into Zimbabwe. Some may have to apply in advance; others are able to obtain visas upon arrival at the port of entry. Visitors must also be in possession of outward travel documents and have sufficient funds for the duration of their stay.

If visas are required:

  • Please ensure you have the correct cash amounts (US Dollars) available as credit cards and Travelers checks are not accepted;
  • You must advise the relevant official of the total number of days that you are spending in Zimbabwe;
  • Consider whether you will require a double-entry visa. Will you be departing and re-entering the country?

For further information please refer to the relevant authorities:

Zimbabwe Tourism:  www.zimbabawetourism.net
Zimbabwe Embassy in Washington DC: www.zimbabwe-embassy.us

Any applicable visas and/or relevant documentation are the responsibility of the traveler.

HEALTH:

There are a few basic health matters that require care and attention. The following points are recommended guidelines only – all travelers should visit either their personal physician or a travel health clinic 4-8 weeks prior to departure.

A yellow fever vaccination certificate is required from travelers arriving from countries with risk of yellow fever transmission.

Otherwise, no other immunisations are required. However, it would be wise to have an updated TPD (tetanus, polio, diphtheria) vaccine, and a Hepatitis A vaccine.

A number of vaccinations are recommended for Zimbabwe. For further up to date information please refer to the relevant authorities:

National Travel Health Network and Centre – Zimbabwe: http://www.nathnac.org/ds/c_pages/country_page_ZW.htm

Centers for Disease Control & Prevention – Travelers’ Health, Zimbabwe: http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/destinations/zimbabwe.htm

There is a high risk of malaria in Zimbabwe below 1200m from November to June. In the Zambezi valley the risk is throughout the year. There is very low risk in Harare and Bulawayo.

You will almost certainly be prescribed a course of anti-malarial tablets. However please also remember that the best precaution is the preventative kind:

  • Avoid being bitten by using mosquito repellents liberally. The safari camps often provide a locally made repellent but please bring your own as there may be skin sensitivity.
  • Wear long-sleeved shirts and trousers/slacks in the evenings.
  • Please use the mosquito net over your bed where supplied/available.
  • Where provided, please use the insecticide supplied to kill any mosquitoes that may have flown into your room.
  • Mosquito coils are also effective.

Malaria is transmitted by a very small percentage of female Anopheles mosquitoes. They are mainly active in the early evening and throughout the night.

There is a six to seven day minimum incubation period before symptoms present themselves. If you become ill on your return, while still on prophylaxis or even once you have stopped taking them, ensure that your doctor does everything to establish that your illness is not malaria. Malaria can be prevented if you are sensible and take basic precautions. It is inadvisable for pregnant woman to visit malarial areas as malaria infection during pregnancy can be detrimental to mother and child.