Tanzania – Travel Tips

Getting There…

A wide number of International airlines fly directly to Dar es Salaam, Kilimanjaro and Zanzibar including KLM, Swiss, Emirates, Egyptair, Etihad, Ethiopian Airlines, Oman Air, Qatar Airways, Turkish Airlines & FlyDubai.

Numerous regional carriers fly into Tanzania from Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Mozambique, Mauritius, Seychelles, Comores, Rwanda, South Africa, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Domestic carriers such as Air Tanzania, Auric Air, Coastal Aviation, Flightlink, Precision Air, Regional Air Services, Safari Air Link and ZanAir link the major cities with tourist attractions and game parks. Air Tanzania, Auric Air, Coastal Aviation, Flightlink, Precision Air and
ZanAir fly between the mainland and Zanzibar.

Airports

International flights serve Julius Nyerere International Airport (DAR), 15 km from Dar es Salaam city centre and Kilimanjaro International Airport (JRO), 42 km from Arusha. Zanzibar International Airport (ZNZ) is 8 km from Stone Town and Songwe International Airport is 20 km from Mbeya city. A new expanded International Arrivals
& Departure Terminal has recently opened at DAR airport.

Visas

Most visitors require visas with the exception of citizens of certain countries of the Commonwealth. It is advisable to obtain them in advance from Embassies and High Commissions as several airlines insist on them prior to departure.
Visas can also be obtained, on arrival, at all points of entry. However to avoid delays at the airports, tourists
requiring visas are recommended to apply for visas, prior to departing for Tanzania. Visas usually take a minimum of 7-10 days to be issued.

Requirements may change so you are advised to contact the appropriate diplomatic or consular authority before finalising your travel arrangements. Although part of the United Republic of Tanzania, Zanzibar remains independent and passports/Tanzania visas are required even on a day’s visit.

Health

It is essential that all visitors take a course of anti-malaria tablets commencing two weeks before departure. Vaccinations against hepatitis A, Polio and Typhoid are recommended.

Personal insurance is advised. Travellers arriving from, or via, countries where yellow fever is endemic will need a Certificate of Vaccination.

Hospitals provide good medical care and there are also many Pharmacies open in cities and towns. Flying
Doctors facilities are also available.

What to Take

Don’t forget the camera, camcorder and binoculars and take a torch for finding your way around your camp at night. Stock up with replacement batteries for all these goods. Take sun-glasses, hat, sun lotion, lip balm – and some insect repellent, it is better not to get stung even if you are taking anti-malaria tablets. It’s best to take any medicines required for the duration of the visit. A spare pair of glasses or contact lenses is also a good idea. Take plenty of film, it is difficult to obtain outside the main centres.

Travel Light

Most safari airlines and air charter Companies limit baggage to a 10-15 kilo maximum. On safari soft canvas/leather baggage is recommended rather than hard shell suitcases.

Language

English is widely spoken but a few words of Swahili are always appreciated.

Currency

The unit of currency is the Tanzania shilling which is divided into 100 cents. Most major currencies – particularly US dollars are accepted and may be converted ONLY at the main Banks in the main towns and tourist areas. DO NOT change money in the street however favourable the rate appears. Please note that Forex Exchange Bureaux are no longer licensed to operate in Tanzania.

Most major 4 & 5 star hotels and Tour operators accept credit cards and they also accept US Dollars and Euros cash
for services. Mastercard and Visa are preferred.

Certain cards, particularly Diners and American Express, are not widely accepted even by major hotels. ATM Machines are easy to find in all the major towns. International Money Transfer services such as Western Union Moneygram etc are also available.

On Safari

Distances in Tanzania are vast, and travel by road can be tiring. It is wise to spend more time in fewer parks. You will see more and won’t return home exhausted. Keep your distance from animals to avoid distressing them. Always follow the instructions of your ranger or guide. Don’t leave your vehicle in the parks except in designated places. Keep to recognised tracks to avoid damaging vegetation.

What to Wear

It never gets really cold in Tanzania. Lightweight clothing is the norm. On safari avoid brightly coloured clothes, they may alarm the animals. Browns, beiges and khaki are preferred. Short-sleeve shirts/blouses and shorts are ideal, but pack a sweater, it can be chilly in the early morning and in the evening. Wear a hat to avoid sunstroke and don’t forget a swimsuit. Shoes should be sensible for walking through the bush. For climbing Kilimanjaro or Mount
Meru take thermal underwear, a rain jacket, good socks and sturdy boots. Shorts for women are acceptable – but not too short. Women should carry a wrap to cover their legs in towns or villages as revealing clothes can cause offence, especially in Zanzibar and other Muslim areas. On the beach, and within the confines of beach hotels, normal swimwear is acceptable but nudity is not.

Tipping

Not normally obligatory but a tip for exceptional service – a maximum of 10% – will always be appreciated. The usual tips for Drivers and Guides are $10-$15 per day.

Security

Tanzania is generally a safe country. Don’t walk in the towns or cities at night – take a taxi instead. Do not wear any valuable jewellery. Don’t carry cameras or large amounts of cash – and beware of pick pockets! Use hotel safety deposit boxes to safeguard your valuables.