At your lodge in Zambia

The lodges in Zambia are extremely accommodating – of guests’ specific needs and Western customs in general. Courtesy is expected, but nothing unusual there, and beyond that visitors will rarely notice if any cultural norms are being stretched. Homosexuality is illegal in Zambia, although the law is rarely enforced. Most lodges won’t have any problem with same-sex guests booking a double room, but it’s worth being upfront about your requirements to avoid any misunderstandings.

Official Zambian regulations stipulate that children under 12 years old may not participate in walking or canoe safaris and some lodges impose higher the age restrictions for their own safety reasons. Each lodge and safari operator has specific rules for children so be sure to check carefully with each before you book.

Less of a rule and more something to be aware of is how lodges handle the daily park fees payable to the Department of Wildlife and National Parks. Fees differ between international residents, SADC citizens and locals, and while they’re almost always incorporated into the cost of all-inclusive stays, they may be charged as an additional expense for those arriving in their own vehicle.

If you’re flying directly into a lodge on a transfer, it’s important to note that most chartered flights have a maximum luggage allowance. 12kg per person is the normal limit, and for light aircraft flights only soft bags are allowed. Soft bags are important because of the small packing space available. A large, tough, dustproof duffle bag usually works very well.

Basic rules for game drives follow the same standards as the rest of Africa – don’t get out the vehicle unless instructed, and don’t disturb the animals. Specific lodge or safari rules will be thoroughly explained by your guide. They’re never draconian and always have guest safety in mind.


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Zambia travel advice

What practical information should I know about Zambia? There are so many ways to experience Zambia that an entire book would be required for an exhaustive pre-holiday checklist. If you’re on an all-inclusive fly-in safari, for example, then just about every need will be thoroughly taken care of, from food to flight transfers to emergency evacuation services. Not so at all if you’re planning a self-drive safari. Zambia is perhaps the most challenging country to self-drive in…

Vaccinations for Zambia

The most common vaccinations for Zambia are against measles, mumps and rubella (MMR), tetanus, diphtheria, polio, typhoid and hepatitis A. Check the latest regarding the yellow fever vaccine and, if it’s required, don’t lose the little yellow booklet that comes with it. Regulations have relaxed recently, but that yellow booklet has been something of a passport in the region. Not having one can stop your holiday in its tracks, especially if you plan to visit other countries in…

Packing list for Zambia

The first thing to do when preparing for Zambia is to book an appointment with a local travel clinic and go and speak to a doctor. The internet is full of African health and safety horror stories, but for safari holidays the risks are generally very low and/or easily manageable. If you’re at all concerned, speak to a professional. They’re likely to advise you to get your immunisations up to date and will be able to prescribe appropriate anti-malarial drugs. They’ll also have the…


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