Foreign travel advice

Zimbabwe

COVID-19 Exceptional Travel Advisory Notice

As countries respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, including travel and border restrictions, the FCO advises British nationals against all but essential international travel. Any country or area may restrict travel without notice. If you live in the UK and are currently travelling abroad, you are strongly advised to return now, where and while there are still commercial routes available. Many airlines are suspending flights and many airports are closing, preventing flights from leaving.

Summary

Coronavirus: stay up to date

Cases of coronavirus (COVID-19) have been confirmed in Zimbabwe. See information on measures introduced in Zimbabwe to limit the spread of the virus. Find out how to return to the UK from Zimbabwe.

See coronavirus travel advice for guidance on international travel.

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Cases of coronavirus (COVID-19) have been confirmed in Zimbabwe. The Zimbabwean authorities have introduced a number of measures to limit the spread of the virus, including announcing the closure of all borders to non-residents and a countrywide lockdown as of 30 March, for 21 days. Commercial airlines have suspended all flights in to and out of Zimbabwe. You should consult your airline and travel insurance company immediately to understand what impact this will have for your travel plans. You should ensure you have accommodation for this entire period as some hotels may close at short notice. If you take regular medication, you should ensure you have a sufficient supply See Coronavirus and Return to the UK.

Given the rapidly changing situation in the region, we are temporarily withdrawing a limited number of UK staff and their dependents from our Embassy. The Embassy will continue to carry out essential work including providing 24/7 consular assistance and support to British people in Zimbabwe.

You should avoid any political gatherings or demonstrations. These can be unpredictable, can turn violent without notice and the response from the security forces may be disproportionate. You should exercise a high degree of caution and monitor local media and this travel advice for updates.

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. As of 24 June 2019, the only legal tender in Zimbabwe is the “Zimbabwe Dollar”. There is a shortage of physical cash and it’s currently not possible to make cash withdrawals using an international bank card. You should check with your tour operator or hotel what payment methods will be accepted. See Money

Zimbabwe is currently experiencing severe electricity shortages resulting in extended periods without power. During blackouts, you should exercise a high degree of caution when driving as traffic lights may not be operational. Water rationing is being experienced in certain parts of the country. Contact your tour operator or hotel for latest updates.

Availability of fuel is sporadic and queues are common. You are advised to check in advance if you can make payment with an international payment card. See Road travel

Tropical Cyclone Idai caused significant flooding and mud slides across many parts of eastern Zimbabwe in March 2019. Whilst the access situation has improved, many roads and bridges in the affected areas are still impassable. Electricity, water, and telecommunications networks have been impacted. If travelling to affected regions, take extra care and follow any advice given by the local authorities. Contact your hotel prior to travel to check that the hotel is still accessible and open.

On 6 September 2018, a cholera outbreak was declared in Harare by the Ministry of Health of Zimbabwe. 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.