Zimbabwe travel tips
Zimbabwe is one of the safest countries in the world to travel in and enjoy. Zimbabweans are friendly and welcoming to visitors, and you are assured of a warm welcome. Having said that, here are a few simple common-sense tips to help you have a safe and enjoyable stay.
- Take care of your valuables especially in crowded areas such as downtown Harare. Keep a sensible eye on wallets and handbags, avoid leaving items of value in cars, and if you have to do so, make sure they are out of site, and preferably in the boot.
- Driving - traffic travels on the left, and signposts will be in general familiar to those from the UK. Zimbabwe has a very high accident traffic rate, so take extra care whilst driving. Especially avoid driving at night, and if flagged over by policemen on motorbikes, immediately pull right off the road, stop the car completely and stay inside. This normally signals the passing of the Presidential motorcade, and all traffic is expected to be off the road and stationary. You have been warned!
- Driving - police roadblocks. You are sure to encounter these during your stay. Please be patient and courteous without police officers, and avoid any confrontation. If required to pay a fine, firmly but courteously request a receipt for any payment.
- Health - Malaria. Seek medical advice before your visit, and take whatever anti-malaria tablets exactly as instructed. Dress appropriately (long-sleeved shirts and long trousers) and use insect repellant. If you do feel unwell, seek medical assistance promptly. If you only feel unwell on return form Zimbabwe, please emphasise to your doctors if you have been in a malarial area, and ask them to screen for this potentially fatal diseases.
- Health - Bilharzia. Avoid swimming or bathing in ponds, dams or any areas of standing or slow-moving water. Bilharzia is a debilitating parasite that can be hard to treat. Seek local advice as some areas are clear of the disease.
- Health - HIV and Aids. Unfortunately, Southern Africa has one of the highest incidences of HIV and Aids in the world. So - be sensible. Absolutely avoid any unprotected sex and if called upon in an emergency to assist anyone with an open or bleeding wound, protect yourself with rubber gloves.