Flights & Transfers
- Flights between Tanzania and South Africa or Victoria Falls will likely require multiple stops and an overnight in a connecting city.
- You may need to adhere to the 33 lb. baggage limit, including both your soft-sided duffel and small carry-on bag, on your internal and inter-Africa flights. Please check with your trip manager to confirm.
- Travel time from Northern Tanzania to South Africa or Victoria Falls is typically around 7-10 hours, not including time allotted for layovers.
- If your trip to southern Africa also includes South Africa, flights from South Africa to Victoria Falls are around 2 hours.
- Upon arrival in Victoria Falls, please look out for a placard that says “Thomson Safaris.”
Immigration and Entry Requirements
- All U.S. and Canadian citizens must have a passport that is valid for at least six months after your return date.
- Visas for Zimbabwe (i.e., arriving via Victoria Falls airport) can be obtained upon arrival for $30 USD.
- Visas for Zambia (i.e., arriving via Livingstone airport) can be obtained upon arrival for $50 USD.
- Please visit https://zw.usembassy.gov/visas/ and https://zm.usembassy.gov/covid-19-information-2/ for the latest COVID-19 related requirements for travel to Victoria Falls.
Weather and Climate
- The cooler dry season runs from March/April to October, and the warmer wet season extends from November to March/April.
- Temperatures in the Austral summer (northern winter) range from about 70˚F at night to a high of 90˚F during the day. Temperatures in the Austral winter (northern summer) range from about 50˚F at night to about 80˚F during the day.
- While at present there are no required immunizations for entering Zimbabwe or Zambia from the U.S., Europe or Tanzania, you should consult your medical provider for the most current advice. Plan ahead and keep your basic shots up-to-date. Some inoculations must be administered serially over a period of time, and others cannot be given together.
- In addition to malaria, which is present, you may wish to discuss further health precautions with your travel doctor.
- If you are traveling from a Yellow Fever endemic country, you may be required to provide proof of Yellow Fever vaccination upon entering the country. Please discuss this requirement with your doctor.
- The electrical systems in southern Africa operate at between 220 and 240 volts (50 Hz).
- A multi-plug adapter set, available in most electronics stores (and larger airports), will include a current converter and every plug type you’ll need.
Essential Physical Considerations
- In Victoria Falls, outside the park proper, the terrain is generally quite flat, and trails are well maintained. The trails in the park are also well maintained, but the mist from the falls and rainfall can make parts of them slippery. For these sections, a walking stick can be handy.
Money & Valuables
- Zambia and Zimbabwe use a multi-currency system, that includes the U.S. dollar.
- Major credit cards are accepted virtually everywhere in Victoria Falls. Let your credit card company or bank know you will be traveling abroad so that they don’t “freeze” your account due to what they might perceive to be suspicious activity.
- ATMs are easily accessible in Victoria Falls. Wherever available, they are the most convenient and economical means for getting cash in the local currencies. Feel free to ask your driver or guide for suggestions about the amount of cash you might need on a given day and where to access it.
- In Victoria Falls, a service charge is usually included in the bills at restaurants, so tipping is not necessary. If a service charge is not included, a tip of 10% is typical.
- Tips for your private drivers/guides are not included in the cost of the trip itself. We hold all of our in-country partners to the highest standards of excellence. While tipping is entirely discretionary, if you feel you have received services that are worthy of those standards, please refer to your tipping guidelines.
- You should exercise the same precautions while traveling in these countries that you would in any unfamiliar location. Stay vigilant against pickpockets and bag snatchers, especially in congested areas such as those frequented by tourists–airports, market places and crowded streets.
- Do not purchase souvenirs from street hawkers. Be wary of con artists. Your guide can advise you on the best places to visit. While it’s easy to be distracted by new sights and sounds, you should be aware of aggressive drivers and unfamiliar traffic patterns. Please rely on your guide should you have any questions or concerns regarding security.
- Avoid tap water in Zimbabwe and Zambia even when brushing your teeth or showering. The same precautions for water also apply to ice cubes; freezing does not remove impurities. Remember that fruits and vegetables are usually washed with tap water, the same water rules apply to these foods as well: eat only cooked vegetables and peelable fruits that you have peeled yourself. Bottled water is safe and available everywhere.
- The sun is very strong in Victoria Falls. Be sure to bring plenty of sunscreen with a minimum SPF rating of 30 and reapply often. Don’t forget your lips and the tops of your feet if you wear sandals. A hat with a wide brim is also a good idea.
- Always carry a small supply (not a spray can) of repellent in your pocket or day pack and apply it as needed. Insect repellents containing up to 30% DEET are generally effective and can be applied to either your bare skin, or to clothing, including hats.