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TIPS FOR TRAVELERS

The Land of Open Spaces, as Namibia is affectionately known, with its undiscovered landscapes and unspoiled nature, makes for a perfect and widely diverse travel destination. The friendly and welcoming people will ensure that your visit to Namibia is an unforgettable experience. The following information and tips will leave you well equipped.

Getting Around

Foreign Nationals must carry a passport valid for at least six months after the date of entry. A visa is required from all visitors except nationals of countries with which Namibia has the necessary visa abolition agreement.

  • No visas are required by bona fide South African passport holders travelling as tourists.

  • All other South African citizens, including businesspeople, require visas.

  • Business Visas are granted at the discretion of the immigration authorities.

  • Holidaymakers and tourists are welcome to remain in the country for 90 days.

 

Please note:

  • Immigration officials are authorized to grant duration of stay based on the information provided on the arrival form.

  • Tourists are advised to check their passports and documentation to ensure that the visa granted matches the duration of stay intended.

  • Visas cannot be obtained from point of entry.

Seasonal Tips

  • The best time to visit the capital and surrounding is between May and September, when it is cool and dry. In the rainy seasons from November to March it is hot and somewhat humib, sometimes with heavy rain. December to January is the main school holiday season in Namibia, when much of the population heads to the coast, and some of the smaller shops and restaurants in the interior might be closed.

  • April and May are pleasant months in Namibia. This is usually when the last rains of the season fall, the air is fresh and free of dust, and the land is green, vibrant and full of new life.

  • During the winter months from June to August the country cools down and nights can become quite cold.

  • By September and October it warms up again and game viewing in most areas is at its best, although there’s often a lot of dust around and the vegetation has lost its vibrancy.

Money Matters

Currency and Credit Cards

  • The Namibian Dollar (N$) is fixed to and equals the South African Rand (ZAR), which is also legal tender in Namibia. Please note: the Namibian dollar is not legal tender in South Africa.

  • Travellers cheque, foreign currency, International Visa, Diners Club, American Express and MasterCard credit cards are generally accepted, while Speedpoint and ATM facilities assure quick and efficient service.

Tax and Customs

  • Value-added tax (VAT) is levied at a rate of 15% on goods and services at the point of sale. Foreign visitors to Namibia can claim VAT on holiday purchases exceeding N$ 250 when they leave Namibia via Hosea Kutako International Airport.

  • VAT on services rendered or goods consumed cannot be refunded.

  • No VAT is payable on exports of goods when sold, consigned or delivered by the seller to the purchaser at an address outside of Namibia.

 

Duty-free allowances

While all goods and gifts acquired abroad or in a duty-free shop, including goods bought duty free on an aircraft, are subject to payment of customs duty and VAT when brought into Namibia, travellers may qualify for the following concessions:

 

Visitors are allowed the following goods, duty free:

  • 400 cigarettes

  • 50 cigars

  • 250 grams of cigarette or pipe tobacco

  • 2 litres of wine

  • 1 litre of spirits or alcoholic beverages

  • 50ml perfume

  • New or used goods to the value of N$ 1,250

Water

Tap water is safe to drink throughout the country, except for isolated rural areas, where the consumption of filtered or bottled mineral water is recommended.

Electricity

220/240 Volts AC. Round two or three-pole 15 amp plugs are used, it is advisable to buy an appropriate adapter before leaving home.

Health and entry requirements

Due to the hot dry climate Namibia is virtually free of tropical diseases, therefore health certificates are not normally required. Visitors arriving from a yellow fever zone require a valid international yellow fever inoculation certificate. Anti malaria prophylactics area advisable if visiting the north of Namibia. A valid passport, which is valid for 6 months beyond intended departure, is required. Contact your nearest Namibian Tourism Board office or Namibian Embassy for an updated list.

Medical Services

All major centres have state-run hospitals and in Windhoek there are currently three world-standard hospitals. Doctors are listed under ‘Classified Medical Listings’ in the local telephone directory. As Namibia is such a vast country, emergency medical evacuation services extend to the furthest corners of Namibia and are supported by a well-developed charter industry and a good road network. Insurance covering travel, accidents, illness and hospitalization is advised for the duration of your stay and must be arranged at time of booking.