FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS ABOUT ZIMBABWE
This information is intended as a guideline only. It is accurate to the best of our knowledge. Please note that we are providing links to external websites as guidelines for more information only. Karell Travel is not responsible for the content thereof.
What are the entry/visa requirements for Zimbabwe?
Passports are required by all foreign visitors to Zimbabwe and must be valid for at least 6 months after the intended length of your trip. It is essential to have at least two blank, consecutive pages for each country you will be visiting. This excludes Amendment and Endorsement pages.
Visas may be required for Zimbabwe depending on the nationality of your passport. U.S. / Canadian citizens are issued upon arrival at no charge. It is is your responsibility to check the entry visa requirements with the individual embassy of each country you intend visiting prior to departure.
U.S. citizens entering Zimbabwe for tourism purposes only can expect to pay $30 for a single-entry for a stay no longer than 30 days. A Kaza univisa which is valid for both Zimbabwe and Zambia can be purchased for $50.00 per person. All visa costs should be paid in USD Cash with exact change.
Visa Stamps Upon Arrival
Please check the dates that officials stamp in your passports to ensure the visa has been issued for the entirety of your stay. This will avoid any problems exiting the country. Be sure to check this information before you leave the immigration counter.
*Karell Travel has provided this information as a courtesy only. Although it is accurate to the best of our knowledge, regulations are subject to change without notice and Karell Travel cannot be held liable for travel interruption and/or denial of entry resulting from failure to meet immigration requirements.
What is the weather / climate in Zimbabwe?
The seasons in southern Africa are reversed from those in the US.
The summer months in Zimbabwe are from November to the end of March which can be very hot. It is also the rainy season – cloud coverage and rain can cool things down but only for a short period of time.
The winter season begins in May and ends in August. This is also the dry season when virtually no rainfall occurs. Winter days are invariably sunny and cool to warm however, evening and night temperatures can drop below freezing point in some areas.
The in-between periods – April/May and September/October – still tend to be dry, but the days are cooler than in summer and the nights are warmer than in winter.
Make no mistake, in the winter months the evenings and early mornings can be very cold. On safari during this time you will need to take very warm clothing especially for early morning game drives.
What is the currency in Zimbabwe?
Zimbabwe’s unit of currency is the Zimbabwean dollar denoted by the symbol ZWL, however it is not an internationally recognized currency. We recommend you take U.S. dollars for your cash needs while in Zimbabwe.
The major hotels in Zimbabwe especially Victoria Falls, do accept credit cards for hotel expenses only. However, credit cards and debit cards can not be used to obtain cash. Travelers to Zimbabwe are encouraged to pre-pay as many expenses as possible through their travel planners and should bring cash for all recreational activities.
What if I have dietary restrictions / requirements?
Most dietary requirements (kosher, vegetarian hindu etc) can be accommodated provided we request them well in advance of your trip. This is particularly important if you will be visiting game lodges.
Please be sure to inform your consultant of any allergies as well (gluten, lactose, peanuts etc.)
What is the language in Zimbabwe?
Zimbabwe has three official languages: English, Shona and Ndebele.
Will I be able to do laundry during my trip?
Laundry service is available at most hotels and lodges throughout Zimbabwe. Prices will vary per hotel/lodge
What are the luggage restrictions / recommendations?
Valuable items such as medications, eye glasses, sunglasses, wallets, passports, computers, iPads, cell phones, cameras, binoculars, jewelry etc should be packed in your carry on luggage. We recommend placing a TSA approved lock on all checked baggage out of an abundance of caution.
Luggage restrictions vary between airlines. Please check with your travel consultant with regard to weight restrictions and quantity / size of bags permitted.
Light Aircraft Flight Restrictions
If your journey contains flights on light aircraft you will be subject to restrictions due to the capacity of the aircraft. You must have a soft-sided duffel bag in order for it to fit in the luggage pod. Hard suitcases are strictly prohibited.
Light aircraft baggage weight allowances typically range from 33 lbs- 44 lbs per person, your consultant will ensure you are aware of the specific requirements of your itinerary. Additional luggage weight allowance can be purchased at a surcharge, subject to availability.
For safety reasons, all light aircraft passengers must provide their personal weight prior to travel to ensure the aircraft is safely loaded within its weight restrictions.
SHOULD I TAKE A CAMERA? SHOULD I TAKE BINOCULARS?
Yes, You are going to a photographer’s paradise wherever you go in Africa so do take plenty of memory cards to record your trip. They will not always be readily available everywhere you go. So to avoid disappointment take a lot with you as well as spare batteries for flashes etc.
Yes, A good pair of strong binoculars is a must on safari, ESPECIALLY IF YOU ARE A KEEN BIRDER OR “TWITCHER”. Trust us, we know.
For everything you need to know about buying cameras and binoculars we invite you to visit : http://www.bhphotovideo.com
Or if you prefer to rent before you go: http://optics4rent.com/index.html
Camera equipment and lenses are so heavy and are included in hand baggage allowances so for your convenience, there are certain game lodges that rent equipment for the period of your stay.
We have provided these websites as guidelines for further information, Karell’s African Dream Vacations is not responsible for the content thereof.
What is the electrical current in Zimbabwe?
All electrical appliances in Zimbabwe run on 220V (in the U.S. we run on 110v). Outlets are made to fit round 3 pin, 15 amp plugs. Although adaptors are generally available at hotels, we highly recommend taking your own adaptor. Most modern electronics (smartphones, tablets, laptops etc) have dual voltage capability and can be safely used with a plug adapter. Any devices that do not support dual voltage should only be used with a voltage converter adapter.
What Time Zone is Zimbabwe in?
Local time in Zimbabwe is GMT +2
That means it is 6 or 7 hours ahead of the eastern United States depending on whether daylight savings time is in effect in the U.S.
What are the tipping/gratuity guidelines?
Tipping is not compulsory. If, however, you want to tip because you have received good service, we have enclosed a brief guideline to assist you:
Transfer driver : US$ 5 per person
City Touring Driver and/or Guides : US$ 10-15 per person for half day tours, US$20-25 per person for full day tours.
Safari Guide / Game Ranger at Game Lodges : US$20-25 per guest per day
Trackers at Game Lodges : US$ 10 per guest per day.
General Staff at Game Lodges : US$ 10-15 per guest per day
Porterage : US$ 1-2 per person per movement.
Restaurants: 10% is customary
Do I need vaccinations for Zimbabwe?
There is no formal requirement for any shots for entry into Zimbabwe including Covid-19 vaccination. Certain safari areas do present a malaria risk so you should speak with your physician about anti-malarial medication. They may have other optional recommendations for you to consider, we defer to their medical expertise.
Please consult with your physician for recommendations regarding inoculations/immunizations.
Can I drink tap water in Zimbabwe?
Although tap water may be fine in most areas for bathing and brushing teeth, we recommend that you drink bottled water at all times.
What should I pack for a safari in Zimbabwe?
As a general guideline, comfortable casual wash and wear clothes are recommended.
If you are going on safari, the less you take the better as most lodges and hotels do offer laundry service if you are staying at least two days.
Muted colors such as stone, khaki, beige or brown are recommended when you are on safari.
Game drives in the early morning and evenings can be quite cold especially in winter so you must pack accordingly.
The key is to dress in layers in the early morning and strip down layer by layer as it gets warmer as the sun rises. Vice versa for evening game drives.
Light weight shirts/blouses with long sleeves as protection from the sun and mosquitos
Jeans or safari trousers
A light weight water-proof jacket
Comfortable walking shoes/sneakers
Comfortable walking sandals or flip flops for warmer days
A wide brimmed hat with under-chin tie to prevent it from flying away
A warm windproof jacket (winter)
A fleece (winter)
A warm polo neck shirt (winter)
A beanie (winter)
A warm scarf (winter)
Equipment & Other
Spare prescription eye glasses/contact lenses
Cameras and related paraphernalia like lenses etc and plenty of memory cards and spare batteries
A small powerful flashlight and extra batteries Travel alarm clock
Small purse size umbrella can come in handy
Small lint roller
A light pack-able backpack or tote to carry equipment and stuff on game vehicles
A supply of Ziploc bags in different sizes may come in handy for dust or water proofing cameras , wet bathing suits etc.
Chargers for cell phones, iPad, cameras, computers and you may want to invest in a mini travel charger surge protector with dual USB ports and five charging outlets.
Personal First Aid Kit
Itch spray for bug bites
Sunscreen with high SPF factor
Purse size kleenex packets Eye drops
Any prescription medications that you rely on on a daily basis.