Travel Advise

ON THE PLANE: we have thought of sharing some gentle exercises to do during the

Shoulder roll: hunch shoulders forward, then upward, then backward, then downward, using the gentle circular motion.

Arm curl: start arms held at a 9. Degree angle: elbows down, hands out in front. Raise hands up to the chest and back down, alternating hands. Do this exercise in 30-second intervals.

Forward flex: with both feet on the floor and stomach held in, slowly bend forward and walk your hands down the front of your legs toward your ankles. Hold the stretch for 15 seconds and slowly sit back up.

Overhead stretch: raise both hands straight up over your head. With one hand, grasp the elbow of the opposite hand and gently pull to one side. Hold the stretch for 15 seconds. Repeat on the other side.

Shoulder Stretch: reach right hand over the left shoulder. Place left hand behind the right elbow and gently press elbow toward the shoulder. Hold the stretch for 15 seconds. Repeat on the other side.

Neck roll: with shoulders relaxed, drop ear to shoulder and gently roll neck forward and to the other side, holding each position for about five seconds. Repeat five times.

Tips for a comfortable flight:

  • For your own comfort try to travel light.
  • Wear loose clothing and elasticated stockings made of natural fibre.
  • Increase your normal intake of water and only drink alcohol in moderation.
  • Use moisturizing cream to keep your skin from drying out.
  • Take off your shoes while on the plane to prevent your feet from swelling up or wear shoes that will cope with expanding ankles.
  • Avoid heavy meals during the flight
  • Take short walks once every 2 hours to improve blood circulation
  • Try to touch your toes while waiting in the aisle to stretch your hamstrings.
  • Upon arrival at your destination take a quick jog, brisk walk or a vigorous scrub to help stimulate blood circulation. Then take a hot shower or a relaxing bath.

PRE TRAVEL ADVISE

We have put together some useful travel advice to help prepare for your safari to Zambia.  OFFICIAL LANGUAGE: English

CLIMATE: Zambia has a temperate to semi-tropical climate.  November to March/April is hot and wet, with big thunderstorms often in the late afternoon. May to October it becomes increasingly dry, with June being the coolest month and October being the hottest

Table 1. Average Temperatures & Rainfall in the Luangwa Valley (The Luangwa & Zambezi Valleys are generally hotter than the rest of the country)

 JANFEBMARAPR MAYJUNJULAUGSEPOCTNOVDEC
TEMPERATURES (centigrade)
Max323132323130293035403733
Min202019181912111215202222
RAINFALL (mm)
normal195287141910000050108110

HEALTH AND INSURANCE

Insurance: We advise you to have comprehensive travel insurance including: medical evacuation; hospitalisation & repatriation; baggage loss and loss of funds through cancellation or curtailment of package booked.  

Malaria: Zambia is a high risk malaria area.  All visitors must take appropriate prophylactics to prevent them from contracting the disease transmitted by infected mosquitoes. Consult your medical practitioner. It is important to adhere strictly to the dosages. We further advise you to use mosquito repellent, wear long clothing in the evenings and sleep under a mosquito net at night to prevent being bitten.  If you come down with flu-like symptoms either during, or within four to six weeks after your visit to a malaria area, seek a doctor’s advice immediately.

Inoculations: A yellow fever certificate is mandatory if you are travelling from an infected area. Vaccinations for cholera, tetanus and yellow fever are advised. Again, consult your medical practitioner.

A small personal medical kit will give you extra comfort whilst travelling. However please be aware that any medication must be accompanied with a doctor’s prescription.  The Zambian government strictly enforce the law when it comes to drugs of any sort.  If in doubt, get an official prescription and make sure your medication is in a sealed container.

TRAVEL DOCUMENTATION

The responsibility to have a valid passport and obtain the correct visas and vaccinations is that of the client alone. 

COMMUNICATION

There is no cell phone coverage in the more remote areas of Zambia. Where there is cellphone coverage at lodges, management request that guests refrain from using their cellphones within public areas of the lodge and on game viewing activities.

PAYMENT FOR SERVICES IN ZAMBIA

The currency in Zambia is the Kwacha.  The denominations are K100, K50, K20, K10, K5 and K1 in coins.

Many of the lodges accept US Dollar, Pound Sterling or Euro bills for payment instead of Kwacha but it is advisable to always have enough Zambian currency just in case.

Credit Cards: Credit cards are becoming more widely accepted at lodges but should not be relied on for payment. A commission varying from between 5 – 7% is generally charged on both credit cards and travellers’ cheques in order to cover the bank charge commission. Visa is the most widely accepted card with some institutions accepting MasterCard. 

Changing Money: Zambia is a free market economy and foreign exchange can be readily converted. It is best to come into the country with United States dollars (USD) cash (or travellers’ cheques), which can be exchanged at any of the banks or Bureau de Change and some lodges. 

USD are easier to change than Pounds sterling and Euro. It is essential that your USD notes are fairly recently printed with “large heads”. Old notes with “smaller heads” (except One Dollar Bills) are not accepted ANYWHERE in Zambia.  Some banks will also charge a different rate for small denominations. We recommend that you have some smaller denominations of USD bills for change and tipping.

There are banks in the main cities across the country. Opening hours are 08:30 to about 14:30 or 15:30 hrs Monday to Friday.  Bureau de Changes stay open on Saturdays and week day afternoons. 

ATM: The main cities have ATM machines which will enable you to withdraw cash in the local Kwacha currency.  Visa is the most widely accepted card at these machines.

WILDLIFE SAFETY

Wildlife can, and does, roam freely near national parks.  When staying at a lodge please take the utmost care when walking about.  If you come across game, do not approach the animal.  Elephants in particular can move fast and can be dangerous – they are scared of humans and can react suddenly without warning.  Nile crocodiles occur in Zambia and we advise you not to swim in any waterways.

WHAT TO BRING

Please note that luggage is restricted to 15kg packed in soft bags for internal flights. 

Both men and women dress smart casual in the evenings at lodges. Whilst there are no regulations for dress code, it is customary in Zambia for women to cover their legs for the sake of modesty. 

For safari activities we recommend comfortable, lightweight clothing in khaki, brown, green and beige bush-toned colours. Pale or bright colours are not advisable for walking safaris as the animals can easily see these shades. Tsetse flies, a biting fly, are also attracted to dark colours, especially navy blue.

  • Light cotton shirts with long sleeves (even in summer; to protect from the sun and mosquitoes)
  • Cotton trousers, shorts or a light skirt
  • Trousers for evenings and cooler days
  • Sweater or warm jacket (game drives in open vehicles can be very cold in winter – for those who feel the cold make sure you bring gloves, beanie and scarf too!)
  • Raincoat (if your holiday is during the green season or visiting the Victoria Falls!)
  • Sports bra for bumpy roads (believe me!!)
  • Comfortable shoes and light walking boots
  • Sunblock, sunglasses & hat. (Important that the hat doesn’t blow off your head easily!)
  • Swimsuit
  • Insect repellent, anti-histamine cream, personal toiletries and medication
  • Binoculars (one pair each is preferable when game viewing)
  • Camera equipment: a telephoto lens (200/300mm); film (100,200,400 ASA); Camera cleaning equipment, and a good dustproof bag. For videos and digital cameras, bring spare batteries – Not all lodges have recharging facilities.
  • If you wear prescription glasses – bring a spare pair.  For contact lens wearers, bring a spare pair of glasses as the dust and insects on the open game viewing vehicles can be a problem.
  • Little torch