The contents of this document are arranged in the order that they should be completed. Some items will need to be arranged a few weeks before your intended date of travel. Mozambique is a member of the SADC bloc of countries. In addition to catering for International travelers, this guide also mentions special conditions that citizens of SADC Member States need to be aware of.
Before you begin to plan your trip, take a look at when your passport expires and make sure it is valid for long enough to acquire the necessary visa and is also valid for the duration of your stay. Citizens of SADC Member States who are visiting for 30 days or less, need to make sure their passports are valid for at least 60 days when entering Mozambique. In addition, they need to make sure that their passports have at least two empty pages. For international travelers the requirement may vary, however, as a general guideline, ensure that your passport is valid for at least 6 months when entering Mozambique and that you have 2-3 empty pages. Back To Top
Citizens from SADC Countries usually do not require a visa to visit Mozambique, if their intended visit is for 30 days or less. However, they are required to get a visa if they are intending to work in Mozambique or stay longer than 30 days. Check with a Mozambique Embassy in your country. Mozambique has announced that all International travelers can now get a visa at a Designated Border Post upon arrival.
International travelers who are obtaining their visa on arrival may need documentation to prove that they are travelling for leisure or tourism purposes (return ticket, accommodation booking confirmation or invitation letter). This visa is valid for 30 days and may be extended up to 60 days. Visas on arrival are issued at these Designated Border Posts.
You may be able to get a multiple entry visa from the Mozambique Embassy in your country if you are intending to travel to Mozambique frequently.
Some countries require that non-citizen residents obtain a re-entry permit when they return to their country of residence, especially if you are not a citizen of that country. Check with the necessary authorities in your country of residence before you leave or you may be refused entry back into your country of residence. Back To Top
If none of the following items apply to you, or at the very least, pack a basic First Aid Kit. Some lodges and resorts in Mozambique have a First Aid Kit onsite. If the place you have booked into is listed on Mozambique.co.mz and has a First Aid Kit onsite, this information is provided in their Accommodation Listing.
Check with your doctor and make sure that you have any vaccinations that may be required. Some countries may require a medical checkup or quarantine if you return from Mozambique without having had the required vaccinations before you left. Some vaccinations take a week or two, or even up to a month to kick in. Consult your doctor ahead of time.
Also check with your medical insurance provider if your policy is valid in Mozambique, or take out additional coverage if necessary. Some parts of Mozambique are still very remote, without adequate treatment facilities, and you may require medical evacuation to Maputo. If you cannot be treated for a life threatening condition in Mozambique, you may need to be evacuated to South Africa or even back to your country. Medical insurance is definitely something you need to find out about.
Some medical insurance providers will not cover you if you participate in certain activities, such as skydiving, or deep sea diving. Check with your medical insurance provider and make sure you understand exactly what’s not covered in your policy and ask if it includes an air evacuation.
If you have a medical condition which requires prescription medication, or if you take prescription medication daily, make sure you have enough for the duration of your stay in Mozambique - you might not be able to find the medication you require in Mozambique. Pack extra in case you experience delays in Mozambique.
If you have allergies, please make sure you carry a document detailing these allergies in your wallet or purse, or have the relevant allergy bracelets to indicate your allergies.
International travelers can check the Center for Disease Control website to see if any health warnings have been issued for Mozambique. A similar website, Fit for Travel exists in the UK and offers similar advice and warnings. Malaria medication is extremely cheap and readily available in Mozambique, however, be sure to get any other medications or vaccines as a precaution against various diseases you may encounter in Mozambique before you leave your country. Back To Top
If you are flying to Mozambique, book your flight as soon as you receive your visa (in some cases you may be required to have an airline ticket to submit with your visa application). This should be a priority since flight prices tend to increase the closer you get to your departure date. Booking in advance is usually cheaper.
Here are a list of Airlines that operate services to Mozambique. If you are travelling overseas, you will probably have a stop-over in South Africa (O.R. Thambo Airport in Johannesburg). If possible, get the contact numbers and email addresses for your airlines and save them in your phone. Delayed flights are common. (Definitely have this information if any part of your trip includes an L.A.M. flight)
Be sure to check with the airline as to what items you are allowed to carry, and what items are prohibited on the flight. Here is a list of Traveller Allowances for Mozambique (items you are allowed to bring into Mozambique as well as a list of items that are prohibited and taxable).
If you are flying, a good traveler’s tip is to put one change of clothes, and all valuables in your cabin luggage (carry-on luggage). Checked luggage (cargo luggage) goes missing even in the most efficient airports around the world. In some airports, for security reasons, lost luggage may be opened and checked for dangerous items.
Many of the resorts, lodges, and hotels in Mozambique provide transfer services from the airport to the accommodation; some of them are free while others provide this as a paid service. If the Accommodation you have booked into is listed on Mozambique.co.mz, this information (transfers from the airport) is specified on the listing page. Some places also offer shuttle services (a service to get you to activities, landmarks, shops, restaurants or attractions). This information is also specified on all listings on Mozambique.co.mz.
Mozambique has Car Rental services if you have arrived by flight and require a vehicle to get around. We also list some reliable Taxi Services in some of the major centers. Check Documentation below if you need to find out whether your drivers license or driving permit is recognized in Mozambique.
If you are driving to Mozambique be sure to get your car checked or serviced beforehand. There are hundreds of cases every year of stranded motorists who thought their vehicle could make the trip without any problems. In addition to getting your vehicle serviced, here is a list of legal Vehicle Requirements for Mozambique. Also take a look at the Road Laws and Driving Guidelines for Mozambique.
There are also Shuttle and Coach Services to Mozambique if you prefer to use a bus service. These mostly operate from South Africa, however, a few other countries also have services into Mozambique. Some of these coach services are extremely luxurious, affordable, and relaxing.
In some cases, if you book an activity with an Activity Center, they will arrange a transfer service from your resort to the place where the activity takes place. If you have used an Activity Center to book an activity, check with them to find out if this service is provided and whether it is free or paid. Back To Top
If possible, plan ahead so that you don’t waste time when you arrive at your destination trying to find out what attractions, activities, restaurants and other facilities are nearby. Mozambique.co.mz can help you. We have a large database of Accommodation, Activity Centers and Restaurants that you can search through. If you need some help with planning, we also list reputable Travel Agents who would be glad to assist you. In some cases booking through the Travel Agents listed on this website will cost no more than if you booked directly.
The Weather is perhaps the single factor most likely to affect your trip positively or negatively. It’s also one of the many things travelers take for granted. Although the sun shines for most of the year, the weather and tides might have some bearing on your visit - especially if you are planning to spend a few days on the beach. Mozambique is also prone some extreme weather (temperatures and rainfall).
If possible, make sure you have pre-booked your Accommodation, and if required, paid any deposits that are necessary to secure your bookings. Mozambique.co.mz provides a link to Booking.com for places that are listed on Booking.com. At the time of writing, we are also planning to provide links to Airbnb, Expedia, Hotels.com and a few others. Some resorts and lodges in Mozambique may require that you fill out additional forms or provide additional information to comply with local laws.
Mozambique.co.mz provides Google Earth maps and GPS co-ordinates for all places listed on our website. Co-ordinates are in the Google GPS format. Please take the time to figure out exactly where your lodge, resort or hotel is located, especially if you are driving, and program these co-ordinates into your GPS or mobile device. Find out more about Useful Navigation Apps for your mobile device that don’t require an internet connection to work, and other guidelines to help you with GPS co-ordinates. Most places in Mozambique can provide you with maps that make it easier to find them. A good idea is to also print a copy of the map - you never know when those trusty devices will fail you.
Save the phone number for the resort, lodge or hotel into your phone in case you need to call them for additional information before your arrival, or during your stay. It seems logical, but most travelers don’t bother, and then panic when they realize they can’t call to get information. Save the number now… or as soon as you know it. Back To Top
Look up the Exchange Rates before you go. Mozambique.co.mz provides the most common exchange rates on our Homepage and also on our News Page.
If your currency exchange rate is not listed on our website, you can get an idea of the exchange rate from Google. In the search bar, simply type:
[Your Currency Code] to MZN
For example: USD to MZN
Google will give you an average exchange rate. Your bank my use a slightly different rate.
Although most places in Mozambique accept VISA or MasterCard (info specified in Accommodation Listings), you are likely to encounter expenses that require cash - some as soon as you enter Mozambique. Change some of your currency to Metical if your bank supports this currency. South African Rand and United States dollars are accepted in some places, but Metical is the preferred, official, legal currency of Mozambique.
ATMs are located in all major centers in Mozambique. Point of Sale Machines and ATM’s will accept VISA or MasterCard for payments or cash withdrawals. American Express, Discover, Diners Club Card and various other cards do not work in Mozambique, unless explicity specified. FNB Bank Mozambique have a 10,000 MZN cash withdrawal limit per transaction and Barclays Mozambique allows up to 20,000 MZN per transaction. Most other ATM’s have a 5,000 MZN cash withdrawal limit per transaction. You may be able to get away with more than one withdrawal transaction per day - this also depends on whether your card has a limit. We would like to note, however, that some Barclays Mozambique ATM’s and Point of Sale machines have been found to be unreliable by various travelers to Mozambique (i.e, money is deducted from your account, but transaction is declined).
If possible, during your planning, find out where ATM machines are located. Mozambique.co.mz has a list of ATM Machines provided by various banks. Most Point of Sale and ATM machines support both older magnetic-strip cards as well as newer chip-and-PIN technology. If a machine supports chip-and-PIN technology, try that option first when paying, before resorting to the card’s magnetic-strip.
Call your bank or credit card provider and inform them of your travel plans to Mozambique. If your bank sees foreign charges without notice, they might block your card as a security precaution. This can be extremely annoying when you are trying to check-out or pay for a dinner in a restaurant. If possible, take more than one Card. You never know when a bank might block your card; your card gets lost, or stolen.
If possible, get an idea of the costs of items in Mozambique so that you can budget and plan your vacation better. Some Restaurant Listing on Mozambique.co.mz have uploaded copies of their menus with price guides.
United States Dollars, South African Rand, British Pounds, and Euro can be exchanged for Mozambican Meticals at any bank in Mozambique. Keeping between $100 - $300 USD in cash for an emergency backup is also a good idea. Back To Top
Make sure that you know where you passport is stored before you travel and that it is still valid. (Check Passport Guidelines at the top of this document.)
It is illegal to drive in Mozambique without a valid driver’s license and third party insurance. For more information take a look the Vehicle Requirements for Mozambique and Road Laws and Driving Guidelines. SADC Drivers licenses are acceptable for tourists who are just visiting. International Drivers Licenses are preferred. If in doubt, get an International Driver’s License from the Automobile Association or other relevant authority in your country. It’s usually a simple process that does not require a driving test, and the document is usually issued immediately. You will probably be required to produce your local driver’s license/permit and one or more color passport photographs. Local Driver’s licenses from most other countries are generally not be accepted by traffic police.
Make color copies of all your documents and get them notarized or authenticated. Then email them to yourself or store them in a separate location to your originals. You can even create a local backup on your phone or mobile devices. If your passport gets lost or stolen you want to be sure that you can still get back to your country, or be able to prove your citizenship. Also make copies of any visas that pertain to current travels - you certainly don’t want to face the wrath of authorities if you can’t prove that you have a valid visa. While you are at it, make copies of hotel reservations, airline or bus tickets, driver’s license, and all other documentation that you might need in case of an emergency.
For extra backup, leave a copy of all documentation at home with someone you trust, so that in the worst case they can email or fax a copy back to you. Give this person your contact details and the contact details of the lodge or resort that you will be staying at.
Carry a list of emergency contacts in your wallet or purse, so that if something happens to you, medical professionals know who to contact. Note any allergies on this list also, or make sure that you have the necessary allergy bracelets in the event that you are not able to speak for yourself.
It’s usually a good idea to have a copy of your ID or passport so that you can produce it on a night out. You don’t really want to carry your passport with you and potentially loose it or have it stolen. Back To Top
Mozambique mostly uses two-prong electrical outlets, but most lodges and resorts also have three-prong round electrical outlets. We have illustrations and more information about Adapters and Voltages. Be sure to bring the necessary adaptors - you might struggle to find them in Mozambique. If you do not have the necessary adaptors you might not be able to charge your devices, though some places do keep an array of adaptors for their customers - but don’t count on it.
Also check the voltage of your devices. Electrical outlets in Mozambique supply 220 volts. Devices (such as those from the United States) which require 110 volts may not work or may be damaged by the increase in voltage. Most laptop computers and mobile devices have transformers which can cope with either voltage. Other appliances such as hair dryers and straighteners will not be able to handle the voltage difference. In this case, you may need to buy a transformer or leave the appliance behind. Note that some places in Mozambique provide hair dryers and various other appliances. Email or call them to find out.
Remember to pack spare batteries and battery chargers for mobile devices, cameras and other electronics. Mozambique.co.mz has a comprehensive Packing List for you to get ideas and tick off the items you should bring with.
If you can, activate your phone’s global or roaming capabilities. It gives you some communication as soon as you arrive, at least until you can purchase a local SIM card or get to a WiFi spot. For more information on purchasing and activating a Mozambican sim card, check Mobile Providers. All Accommodation Listings on Mozambique.co.mz have specifics about the best network provider to use in their area.
Portuguese is the first official language in Mozambique. English is the second official language. Most of the places listed on Mozambique.co.mz have a few staff members who speak both languages. However, there are still quite a few places, restaurants especially, where staff can only speak Portuguese. Some of these places also have menus written entirely in Portuguese with no English translations. You might find it helpful to learn some Common Phrases such as “Hello”, “Please” and “Thank You”. In the worst case scenario, you can try the Google Translate App for Android and Apple devices. It will scan text or listen to an audio recording and attempt to translate it. You can also take a Portuguese crash course in the Duolingo App for Android and Apple devices. A large majority of Mozambican citizens don’t speak English. And quite a few don’t speak Portuguese properly. Back To Top
Before You Leave
Make sure that your pets, if any, will be taken care of while you are away. You might want to ask a friend to check up on them, baby sit them, or call your local kennels to reserve a place for them.
Cancel any subscriptions, mail orders or deliveries that might occur while you are away. If you don’t need a service, such as your cable or DSTV service, you may be able to cancel it while you are away. The same goes for your Internet Access service or other subscriptions you might have.
Set a voice mail on any phones which will stay behind, include contact numbers where people can reach you if it’s urgent. Set automatic Email replies on any accounts that you might not check frequently. A large number of resorts and lodges in Mozambique provide some form of Internet Access. This information is listed on Mozambique.co.mz in their Accommodation Listings.
Remember to pay bills that may be due while you are away. You wouldn’t want to get home and find that the electricity company has suspended service to your house to the detriment of all the food in your deep-freeze. Empty out perishables from your refrigerator - so that you don’t come home to rotting vegetables. Back To Top
We have made a note of some of the most essential items that you should bring with you when travelling to Mozambique. Use our suggestions for ideas or as a reminder. Here is the Packing List. In addition to that, seriously consider packing a basic First Aid Kit that consists of some of the most essential items. Back To Top