Following widespread disruption, including violent protests, in many areas of Zimbabwe during week beginning 14 January 2019, the situation remains unsettled in Harare and Bulawayo in particular. There is a risk of further disruption, including violent protests and activity by the security services. There remains a heightened security presence in urban areas. You should exercise caution and monitor local media and this travel advice for updates. Access to the internet has been disrupted across Zimbabwe and you should not rely on particular apps for communications as these may be blocked.
You’re advised to exercise caution and avoid any political gatherings or demonstrations. These can be unpredictable and may turn violent. Taking photographs of members of police and armed forces personnel and of demonstrations and protests is not permitted. You should avoid political activity, or activities which could be considered political, including political discussions in public places. Ensure you carry identification, so that you can produce it if required to do so by the security forces. See Political situation
Zimbabwe’s economic situation remains unpredictable. There is a shortage of physical cash and it’s currently not possible to make cash withdrawals using an international bank card. Almost all transactions are conducted in US dollars. Make sure you have enough money in US dollar notes for your visit, or check with your tour operator that card payments will be accepted. In November 2016, Zimbabwe introduced “bond notes” as legal tender. Officially these are at 1:1 parity with the US dollar and are only legal tender within Zimbabwe. Stock levels in supermarkets, including some basic commodities, are inconsistent. An increasing number of businesses, including some medical providers, will only accept US dollars in cash, rather than credit or debit cards. See Money
Availability of fuel is sporadic and queues are common. Keep cars topped up and carry sufficient fuel for long journeys. See Road travel
On 6 September 2018, a cholera outbreak was declared in Harare by the Ministry of Health of Zimbabwe. There are continuing reports of typhoid fever and cholera in a number of areas of the country. The situation is being monitored by the World Health Organisation. You should familiarise yourself with the symptoms and follow the advice of the National Travel Health Network and Centre. See Health
There’s a moderate level of crime in Zimbabwe. Remain vigilant, especially after dark, and make sure accommodation and vehicles are secure. See Safety and security
Always carry identity documentation or a copy of your passport. See Local laws and customs
Holiday and business visas are available at the port of entry. Don’t violate the conditions of your visa. See Visas
Dual British-Zimbabwean nationals who travel to Zimbabwe must have a valid travel document to re-enter the United Kingdom. It’s not possible to re-enter the UK using a Zimbabwean passport or emergency travel document without a visa or entry clearance endorsed. See Dual nationals
Air Zimbabwe has been refused permission to operate flights to the EU because the airline has been unable to demonstrate that it complies with international air safety standards. British government employees travelling to and within Zimbabwe have been advised to use carriers that aren’t subject to the EU operating ban. See Air travel
Although there’s no recent history of terrorism in Zimbabwe, attacks can’t be ruled out. See Terrorism
If you’re abroad and you need emergency help from the UK government, contact the nearest British embassy, consulate or high commission.
Take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance before you travel.