PASSPORTS AND VISA
All visitors are required to carry a passport that is valid for six months beyond the intended length of stay. There should be sufficient blank pages for entry stamps upon arrival. With a valid passport, one may obtain a visa either before arriving in Tanzania at the Tanzania Embassy abroad or at any port of entry staffed by immigration officials, such as an international airport.
Most travellers require tourist visas for entry into Tanzania.
- Visas for US and Irish Nationals cost USD100 per person.
- Visitors from the Commonwealth countries do not need a visa to enter Tanzania except the following countries: Canada, Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, Australia, New Zealand, Sierra Leone, South Africa and UK.
- Visitors from non-commonwealth countries are required to pay for a visa (except Rwanda and Romania). The fee is USD50 and is subject to change.
- A referred visa is obligatory for citizens from a number of countries such as Ethiopia, Turkey, and Egypt. The referred visa is one that requires special clearance or permission from the Director of Immigration Services in Dar es Salaam or the Principal Immigration Officer in Zanzibar, and should be applied for at least 2 weeks prior to arrival.
Malaria: Anti-Malarial precautions are an absolute necessity when visiting Tanzania. It is important that you check with a qualified health professional for the most current information concerning your travel itinerary and personal health history. In addition, other personal protective measures, such as the use of insect repellents (containing the active ingredient ‘DEET’), covering arms and legs after dusk, avoid the use of scented products, help to reduce malaria risk.
Yellow Fever: If you are arriving in Tanzania (or planning to re-enter) from an area that is infected with yellow fever, or arriving from a country where yellow fever is endemic (such as Kenya, Sudan, South America or Uganda) you are required to have a yellow fever vaccination and it must be administered at least ten (10) days before your arrival (or re-entry) into Tanzania.
If your travel itinerary requires you to have a yellow fever vaccination, you must ask your doctor to provide you with an “International Certificate of Vaccination” which should be carried with you while travelling to serve as proof that you have fulfilled the vaccination requirement. Direct arrivals from non-endemic countries in Europe and North America are not required to show the certificate.
Swahili is the official language in Tanzania, although English is widely spoken and understood. Here are a few useful Swahili words and phrases to impress the locals:
English – Kiswahili: Hello (Jambo) Goodbye (Kwaheri) How are you? (Habari?) Good, fine (Mzuri) (like the state, Missouri) Please (Tafadhali) Thank you (Asante) Yes( Ndiyo) No (Hapana) Very much (Sana) May I come in? (Hodi?) Come in, near (Karibu) How much?, How many? (Ngapi?) How many shillings? (Shilingi ngapi?) What time is it? (How many hours?) (Saa ngapi?) Is the tea (coffee) ready? (Iko chai) (kahawa) tayari? Bring drinking water, please (Lete maji ya kunywa tafadhali) Buffalo (Nyati) Cheetah (Duma) Elephant (Tembo) Giraffe (Twiga) Hippo (Kiboko)
Leopard (Chui) Lion (Simba) Ostrich (Mbuni) Rhino( Kifaru) Zebra (Punda Milia) Wildebeest (Nyumbu)
Generally, Tanzania has a comfortable climate year-round. The coastal areas have a tropical and humid climate, the highlands regions in the north have a temperate climate due to altitude and the vast central plateau is hot and arid.
While Tanzania does not have distinct seasonal changes due to its proximity to the Equator, there are some subtle climatic variations at different times of the year.
Mid-March through May: This season is normally characterized by heavy, intermittent rains and high humidity. In many recent years, however, there has been more rain in January than in April and May.
June, July and August: Tanzania’s weather is coolest during these months, with lows of about 45°F or 7°C and highs of about 75°F or 24°C. During this time the country is refreshingly green.
September, October and November: This is a delightful time to visit East Africa, comparable to springtime in North America and Europe. The days are warmer with lows of about 65°F or 18°C and highs about 85°F or 29°C. Short, scattered rains fall in November.
December, January and February: These are the warmest months of the year (Tanzania’s “summertime”). Temperatures do not often exceed 90°F or 32°C and morning and evening temperatures are refreshingly cool with low humidity.
At any time of year the temperatures on the Ngorongoro Crater rim can be decidedly cooler than on the Crater floor and in the Serengeti (especially from mid-May through August).
Note: This is a guideline only and unseasonal weather can occur so you should pack with a degree of flexibility in mind.
Casual, comfortable wash and wear clothing is most useful. It is certainly not necessary to bring a separate change of clothing for each day and evening, and it is recommended that you keep luggage to a minimum for your own comfort and ease of transport, especially if you are using light aircraft transfers.
- Casual lightweight cotton, khaki or neutral coloured clothes for safari
- Fleece or sweater and a warm jacket for game drives or cool evenings
- Light raincoat and/or fold-up umbrella
- Swimsuit, scarf or bandana, kanga or sarong
- Wide brimmed hat/cap
- Personal toiletries, sun barrier creams; lip balm and insect repellent
- Binoculars, camera, flashlight and accessories (including any batteries)
- Sunglasses and prescription glasses
- Soft-sided luggage and fold-up daypack or shoulder pack to carry items
- Travel detergent
- Comfortable walking shoes with soft soles and beach sandals
The unit of currency is the Tanzania Shilling (TShs) which is divided into 100 cents. Visitors can bring with them any amount of foreign currency but it is against the law to import or export Tanzania Currency.
Foreign currency in cash or in travelers cheques may be exchanged at the commercial banks, authorised dealers, or at the bureau de changes operating at the international airports, major towns and border posts.
Safari vehicles and small aircraft provide limited space for luggage. It is therefore recommended to travel with light bags since bulky suitcases will overload and might not be taken on board.
Baggage allowances vary according to airline – check your airline for details. Please bear in mind that the luggage weight allowance on a domestic flight will always be considerably lower than on an international flight. Please check with the airline. Excess luggage might be charged but might also be refused if the flight is already at maximum capacity.
Several international airlines operate flights into Tanzania through Dar es Salaam, Kilimanjaro and Zanzibar International Airports to name a few KLM, Turkish Airlines, Quatar Airways, Ethiopian Airlines, Kenya Airways, Emirates. Travel within the country is by Air Tanzania (the national airline), Precision Air, Air Excel, Coastal Aviation, Zan Air, Regional Air, Tropical Air, Fastjet, and Auric Air.