Most frequent questions and answers
ENTRY TO NAMIBIA: Do I need a visa to enter Namibia: Nationals from the countries listed below are not required to obtain Visas to travel to Namibia on holiday for visits shorter than three months:
Angola, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Belgium, Botswana, Brazil, Canada, Congo Brazzaville (only Diplomatic/ Official and service Passports), Cuba, Denmark, France, Finland, Germany, Hong Kong, Ireland, Iceland, India (Diplomatic and Official Passports up to 3 months), Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kyrgyzstan, Lesotho, Luxemburg, Lichtenstein, Macau (SAR), Malawi, Malaysia, Mauritius, Moldova, Mozambique, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria (Only Diplomatic and Official Passports), Norway, Portugal, Poland (diplomatic and official passports up to 3 months), Russian Federation, Seychelles, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Turkey (only diplomatic and official passports), Turkmenistan, Ukraine, United Kingdom, , United States of America, Ghana (only diplomatic/ official and service passports), Uzbekistan, Venezuela (Only Diplomatic/Official passports, Zambia, Zimbabwe.
Please note: It is the responsibility of clients to ensure that passports, visas or other travel documents are valid for the duration of their stay in Namibia and other areas included in tours, and the company will entertain no complaints related to invalid travel documentation. In the event that a client does not possess the necessary documentation to enter an area or country on the tour, the company reserves the right to request the client to disembark from the tour at the point of entry to such areas or countries. Should such a case ensue, the company will not be liable for providing further travel arrangements. If you are travelling on our 9-day Delta and Vic Falls trip, please check the visa cost for entering Zimbabwe. This is to be paid at the border crossing and they will require US$. If you have a passport that requires you to obtain a visa to enter Botswana, please make sure this is a multiple entry visa because this trip will enter Botswana more than once.
It’s compulsory for people travelling on our safaris and we place the onus on our clients to make sure that they are adequately insured. It is also important to realize that should you need to make a claim on your policy (for medical expenses for example), it is most likely that you will personally have to pay any bills up front, at the time the service is provided. You will then have to make a claim against your insurance company when you get home. With this fact in mind we recommend to all our clients that they have enough funds available to cover any unexpected costs. Usually the best way to do this is to carry a credit card with a sufficient credit limit.
Please note that if you are travelling with children, Namibia requires you to show the full unabridged birth certificate for each child accompanying you.
Flights to Namibia: main international airlines fly into Johannesburg from where there are connecting flights into Windhoek. Airlines that fly direct into Windhoek are our National carrier, Air Namibia; and Ethiopian Airways.
The currency of Namibia is The Namibian Dollar (NAD; symbol N$) is in note denominations of N$200, 100, 50, 20 and 10. Coins are in denominations of N$5, N$1, 50 cents, 10 cents and 5 cents. It is linked to the South African Rand (R) on a 1:1 basis (South African Rand = 100 cents). The South African Rand is also acceptable as currency in Namibia.
The import and export of local currency is limited to N$50,000. The import of foreign currency is unlimited, provided sums equal to or exceeding NAD5,000 are declared on arrival. Export of foreign currency is unlimited up to the amount imported and declared.
Banking hours: Monday – Friday 09h00 to 15h30 and Saturday 08h30 to 11h00
Banks are found in most towns, with most being closed on Sundays and public holidays. Most of them offer foreign exchange services – with cash, bank and credit cards as well as travelers’ cheques.
American Express, Diners Club, Mastercard and Visa are accepted. Credit cards are not usually accepted at petrol stations, so bear this in mind when you visit the ATM. Setting aside an emergency petrol cash fund is a good idea if you’re planning to drive.
You can also obtain cash from many of the ATMs. Several international banks have branches in main city centers. Always advise your bank that you are travelling outside of the country as they might block your purchases if they have not been informed.
To avoid additional exchange rate charges, take traveler’s cheques in US Dollars or South African Rand. In general, you can expect a better exchange rate for traveler’s cheques than for cash.
Public transport in Namibia is geared towards the needs of the local populace, and is confined to main roads between major population centers. Although cheap and reliable, it is of little use to the traveler as most of Namibia’s tourist attractions lie off the beaten track.
It is easy to travel around Namibia by car, and a 2WD vehicle is perfectly adequate for most journeys. However, long distances, poor mobile phone coverage outside of main towns and infrequent petrol stations that only accept cash mean that planning ahead is vital.
There are major airlines that fly into Windhoek and Swakopmund. Other destinations are reachable by car or charter flight.
Namibians drive on the left and all signposts are in English. Seat belts must be worn at all times and talking in a mobile phone while driving is prohibited. The general speed limit is 120km/h on tarred roads outside of towns and 100km/h on gravel roads. In built up areas, the speed limit is 60km/h.
Do I need malaria tablets in Namibia: Namibia is a low-risk malarial destination but we recommend that you seek professional medical advice to enable you to make decisions on personal malaria protection.
Generally Northern Namibia, including Etosha National Park is considered to be higher Malaria risk than the Southern Parts of Namibia. Malaria risk is also higher during the rainy months from December till May.
You should use an effective insect repellent on clothing and any exposed skin. Diethyltoluamide (DEET) is safe and the most effective insect repellent and can be sprayed on to clothes. Local Names in Namibia include Peaceful Sleep and Bug Off.
If you sleep outdoors or in an unscreened room, you should use mosquito nets impregnated with an insecticide (such as pyrethroid). The net should be long enough to fall to the floor all round your bed and be tucked under the mattress.
If practical, you should try to cover up bare areas with long-sleeved, loose-fitting clothing, long trousers and socks – if you are outside after sunset – to reduce the risk of mosquitoes biting.
Health requirements: yellow fever inoculation is a requirement only if the journey to Namibia entails passing through a yellow fever area of Africa by any other means than by a scheduled air service.
Traditional Namibian cuisine is rarely served and so the food at restaurants tends to be European in style and is, generally, of a very high standard.
Namibia is very meat-orientated, and many menu options will feature steaks from various animals. However, there is usually a vegetarian and seafood section offered by most camps and restaurants.
In the supermarkets you’ll find pre-wrapped fresh fruit and vegetables (though the more remote the areas you visit, the smaller your choice), and plenty of canned foods, pasta, rice, bread, etc. Most of this is imported from South Africa.
The water in Namibia’s main towns is generally safe to drink, though it may taste a little metallic if it has been piped for miles. Natural sources should usually be purified, though water from underground springs and dry riverbeds seldom causes any problems. However, filtered and bottled water are readily available in most towns and all camps, lodges and hotels.
Partially covered by the Namib Desert, one of the world’s driest deserts, Namibia’s climate is generally very dry and pleasant – it’s fine to visit all year round. Namibia only receives a fraction of the rain experienced by countries further east. Between about December to March some days will be humid and rain may follow, often in localized, afternoon thunderstorms. These are more common in the center and east of the country, and more unusual in the desert.
April and especially May are often lovely months in Namibia. Increasingly dry, with a real freshness in the air, and much greenery in the landscape; at this time the air is clear and largely free from dust.
From June to August Namibia cools down and dries out more; nights can become cold, dropping below freezing in some desert areas. As the landscape dries so the game in the north of the country gravitates more to waterholes, and is more easily seen by visitors. By September and October, it warms up again; 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. November is a highly variable month. Sometimes the hot, dry weather will continue, at other times the sky will fill with clouds and threaten to rain – but if you’re lucky enough to witness the first rains of the season, you’ll never forget the drama.
Namibians have a somewhat relaxes attitude to dress codes. A jacket and tie are very unusual. In fact, long trousers and a shirt with buttons are often quite adequate for a formal occasion or work wear. A pair of sensible shoes, jeans and a t-shirt are recommended.
During the day it is generally hot, so pack light weight loose fitting clothes in natural fabrics, such linen or cotton, that will keep you cool and are easy to wash and dry.
- Comfortable, lightweight clothing for the daytime and a sweater or jacket for early mornings and evenings.
- Comfortable walking shoes and sandals.
- Protection against the sun – sunblock, hat, sunglasses, lip balm and moisturizing lotion.
- Flashlight (headlamp), binoculars and a good camera with extra film or memory card. For electrical small appliances or chargers, a conversion plug to a three-pin type outlet.
- Swimsuit as most establishments / campsites have swimming pools.
- Insect repellent, rehydrating solutions or concentrates, diarrhea medication, malaria prophylaxis (if traveling in malaria areas), bandages, etc.
- Warm jersey or fleece plus anorak or parka, scarf, gloves and beanies/woolen hats for the cold winter months.
Electrical sockets in Namibia are Type M (SABS-1661). If your appliance’s plug doesn’t match the shape of these sockets, you will need a travel plug adapter in order to plug in. Travel plug adapters simply change the shape of your appliance’s plug to match whatever type of socket you need to plug into. If it’s crucial to be able to plug in no matter what, bring an adapter for all types.
Electrical sockets in Namibia usually supply electricity at 230 volts AC / 50 Hz frequency. If you’re plugging in an appliance that was built for 230-volt electrical input, or an appliance that is compatible with multiple voltages, then an adapter is all you need. If your appliance isn’t compatible with 230 volts, a voltage converter will be necessary.
The amount and type of animals you are likely to see will greatly depend on the region you visit. Etosha National Park is home to 4 of the Big 5 which include the Lion, Leopard, Rhino and Elephant. Buffalo is the only one of the Big 5 that is not present in the Etosha National Park. Etosha is further home to 144 Mammal species and these include Zebra, Springbok, Oryx, Kudu, Eland, Impalas, White and Black Rhino, Giraffes, Damara Dik Dik, Steenbok, Brown Hyenas, Cheetah, Leopard and Jackals to name just a few. Birdlife in Etosha is also very prolific with a wide variety of endemic and migratory birds.
The rest of Namibia you are likely to spot some Oryx, Ostriches, Kudus, some baboons as well as warthogs. And in the Caprivi and Okavango Regions you will be able to see crocodiles, hippos, roan and sable antelope and buffalo.
Along the coast of Namibia, you may see heavy-side dolphins and the cape fur seals as well as a rich marine birdlife.