Stepping out in Zambia is always an adventure.
Zambia general informationHow can I make a call to or from Zambia? What is Zambia's currency? What time is it in Zambia? – just some of the questions travellers have, when going on a Zambia safari holiday for the first time. Below we've tried to answer common questions.
Know before you goAs you plan your trip, and before you travel, we recommend that you check the latest Foreign Office advice on the places that you're going to - regardless of where you are travelling to, or how you are travelling. See FCO's Zambia advice here, or its info on other countries here.
We urge you to do this, as we recommend that all our travellers keep themselves up to date with the current foreign office advice on their destination countries.
Time in ZambiaZambia is two hours in the advance of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT+2). There's no time difference between the summer and winter months, since Zambia doesn't operate daylight saving times.
Currency in ZambiaZambia's currency is the Zambian Kwacha (ZMW), and at time of writing (Feb 2014) £1 = Kw9.55 – please see www.oando.com for the latest rates. Camps usually charge in UK£ or US$; credit cards are accepted by most, although many have a surcharge. Most visitors heading out on safari don't get any Kwacha in advance of their arrival in Zambia.
Zambia's International Dialling CodeCalling to Zambia, you dial the international country code (00)260, followed by an area code (e.g. (0)21 for Lusaka) and the local number; calling from Zambia, you dial 00 and the relevant country code (e.g. +44 for the UK, or +1 of the US). Calls on a land-line to the UK with Zambia's largest telecommunications operator, Zamtel, cost US$0.84 per minute (US$0.63 per minute off-peak; Aug 09).
Food in ZambiaThe standard of food at Zambian safari camps is very high; the majority serve delicious international fare.
The local Zambian cuisine is base on nshima – cooked porridge made from ground maize, served with tasty meat or dried fish. The local beers (Mosi, Castle and Rhino) are good, as are imported South African beers and wines. Soft drinks are available everywhere, although choices are often limited.
Health in ZambiaZambia is a tropical country and several vaccines are sensible (typhoid, polio, hepatitis, tetanus and possibly meningitis C). Malaria is common; you should take antimalarials. Always check the latest recommendations with your doctor or travel clinic, and perhaps see the Scottish NHS website for more useful travel information on Zambia.
HIV infection rates are high; AIDS is prevalent here. This isn't usually an issue for travellers, but they should be aware of the situation, and take the same sensible precautions to avoid infection which are wise in most countries. We understand that blood supplies used by the private hospitals here have been carefully screened for many years.