Many African nations are starting to reopen borders, remove curfews, and slowly resume international tourism. Most countries in Africa have been very strict on containing the spread of the virus, with most of them going into complete lockdowns earlier this year. That means nobody in and nobody out. Now that case numbers are relatively low across the continent, some nations have already reopened, with others making plans on how to reopen responsibly.
Many of our current guests, as well as future travellers interested in booking a safari, have been asking about border closures and flight schedules. Thanks to our direct line of communication with our trusted on-the-ground partners throughout Africa, cross-referenced with official government entities, we’ve compiled a one-stop informational resource with real-time updates on travel restrictions due to COVID-19.
The below information was updated Updated 5 October, 2020.
Tanzania: All travellers entering or leaving Tanzania will be subjected to enhanced screening for COVID-19. There will be no 14-day mandatory quarantine. All travellers, whose countries or airlines require them to get tested for COVID-19 with a negative test result as a condition for travelling will be required to present a certificate upon arrival. Travellers from other countries with symptoms and signs related to COVID-19 will undergo enhanced screening and may be required to undergo COVID-19 RT-PCR testing.
Kenya: Kenya reopened its borders on 1 August and published a list of countries from which visitors are not required to be quarantined. All travellers must present a negative COVID-19 PCR test certificate issued no more than 96 hours before departure at check-in. All travellers must present a completed Kenya Travelers Health Surveillance form online and present the corresponding QR code to Port Health authorities upon arrival. A 14-day self-quarantine is mandatory for travellers arriving from certain countries as determined by the Ministry of Health. Travellers arriving from specified countries are currently exempted from self-quarantine measures.
Rwanda: Rwanda reopened on 1 August. Arriving travellers must present negative PCR test results from within 120 hours of arrival and will be tested again on arrival followed by quarantine in a local for up to 24 hours while awaiting results. Travellers must also have a negative PCR test taken within 120 hours prior to departure.
Uganda: Uganda will reopen on 1 October 2020. Travellers must have a negative COVID-19 PCR test done within 72 hours before departure to Uganda, and must not display any signs and symptoms of any infectious disease before boarding. The COVID-19 PCR test must be taken at a laboratory approved by the country where the travellers journey starts. There is no mandatory quarantine requirement for travellers who have a valid negative COVID-19 PCR test certificate on arrival and do not show any symptoms of COVID-19.
South Africa: From 1 October 2020, all travellers from countries with a low rate of COVID-19 infection and transmission, will resume subject to the traveller providing a valid certificate of a negative PCR test which was obtained not more than 72 hours before the date of travel. Travellers are required to carry a COVID-19 negative PCR test certificate when travelling. Verification of the COVID-19 negative PCR test certificate taken no more than 72 hours before departure will be managed by the airport team as part of documentation checks at the time of flight departure. Please check out this website to find out which countries are EXCLUDED from entry into South Africa:
Zimbabwe: Zimbabwe’s government announced on 3 September the resumption of domestic tourism and all tourism activities. International flights into the Harare and Victoria Falls will resume from 1 October 2020. All travellers will be required to have a PCR COVID-19 Clearance Certificate issued by a recognised facility within 48 hours from the date of departure.
Namibia: Namibia’s Hosea Kutako International Airport outside Windhoek is open and international flights are arriving. All tourists must have a negative PCR result not older than 72 hours before boarding their flight to Namibia. Tourists must be tested again for Covid-19 on day five of their visit. The tourist must be available for swabbing at the closest medical facility OR make use of the service at their lodge or camp.
Zambia: All travellers to Zambia must present a negative COVID-19 PCR test result. The test must be taken within the last 14 days. Health authorities may also conduct random nucleic acid testing for COVID-19 on arriving travellers with a negative result.
Botswana: Currently not open. Entry to Botswana is open only to Botswana nationals and foreign nationals with valid residency visas. There are currently no commercial flights in to or out of Botswana
Madagascar: The Malagasy government has announced that the island of Nosy Be will reopen for international travel on 1 October 2020. Travel will be limited to Nosy Be and the surrounding archipelagos – no travel to the mainland of Madagascar will be allowed. All arriving travellers are required to present a return air ticket and a negative result for a COVID-19 PCR test carried out 72 hours before arriving in Madagascar. A letter of commitment must be signed by arriving travellers, acknowledging the COVID-related health measures in Madagascar, complete a health form and comply with all airport health procedures like temperature scans and using a disinfectant corridor.