Zimbabwe Tourism Update

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Just how easy it to tour Zimbabwe at the present time ? (April 2007).

Zimbabwe is still an awesome destination. Here is some current information.

Fuel is available in limited amounts but your foreign number plates will ensure that the locals will assist you where they can. It makes good sense to top up at every opportunity. This also ensures that any contaminated fuel you may buy is diluted with the existing contents of your tank.

Fuel is also available on the black market but this activity is illegal and therefore proceed with caution. Prices vary greatly from town to town i.e. anything between R6 and R12 a liter. Sometimes you will be told that fuel will be available the following day which is not a problem if you intend to stay overnight anyway. In bigger cities you sometimes have to travel to a number of petrol stations to find supplies.  If you have booked accommodation at some of the better hotels and lodges they will put aside a limited quantity for you before you arrive. It makes good sense to observe the speed limits at all times. This not only improves consumption and keeps you out of the hands of traffic officials with their dubious agendas.

Know what is important to you and then be prepared to pay for it. Zimbabwe can be a very expensive tour and therefore a predetermined list of priorities will make it easier to say yes or no when confronted with an expensive entrance or activity fee. The official exchange rate offered by banks from SA Rands to Zim dollars will make your tour expensive. Changing money on the black market is much more favourable but again proceed with caution. Ensure that you have a spread of hard currency i.e. Zim dollars, rands and USD as many touristy activities and facilities only accept foreign currency.

Border Crossing
No problem here. Ensure that you have your motorcycle's registration papers. The crossing will cost around R350-00 and remember to keep all receipts.

Shortages in shops are common so you must be flexible and roll with the punches. Take with you whatever is essential to the success of your tour and for the rest, just make-do.

Hotels and lodges have continued to maintain a high standard but luxury items like alcohol are very expensive.

Business as usual
The local infrastructure is coping with the difficult circumstances. If you keep abreast of events on the local news you will not encounter any incidents as you will be able to by-pass any problem areas.

As with any country were times are difficult you must be streetwise at all times and take sensible precautions.

Contact details
Zimbabwe Tourism Authority. 011 616 9534/6. Email zta@telkomsa.net and www.zimbabwetourism.co.zw



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