In general, Tanzania is one of the safer African countries for visitors. Every year millions of tourists travel to the country to experience its vast wilderness areas such as the Serengeti and Kilimanjaro National Park, home to Africa’s highest mountain. However, although Tanzania is relatively safe, there are still safety precautions that visitors should take to ensure a smooth and hassle-free trip. The first thing travelers should do when planning to visit is check if they require a Tanzania e-Visa, as the majority of foreign citizens are required to apply for a visa in order to enter the country.
Is it Safe to Travel to Tanzania?
Most foreign visitors to Tanzania come to the country as part of a group, in order to participate in activities such as a safari or mountain climbing. However, those who wish to travel to Tanzania alone should not face any particular issues as long as they exercise caution.
It is perfectly safe for travelers to walk around the major towns and cities alone during the day, although it’s advised to stick to a group, use taxis and extra caution if venturing out at night. Travelers should also avoid traveling to isolated locations alone, no matter the time of day.
Safety Tips for Tanzania
In order to guarantee a smooth trip to Tanazia, there are certain safety tips that travelers should be aware of. Those traveling to Tanzania should:
- Follow travel health advice – Tanzania is a country where many tropical diseases are present, so it’s a good idea to get the recommended vaccinations for Tanzania before traveling, as well as to ask your doctor for advice on taking anti-malarial drugs.
- Be wary of being approached by strangers – Avoid accepting food or drink from someone you don’t know. Be skeptical of anyone who claims to recognize you, or approaches you to ask for ‘donations’ or offer special deals on safaris or other tourist activities. Touts can be very pushy in the main tourist areas, so it’s a good idea to walk with purpose and avoid engaging to avoid giving the impression that you have recently arrived.
- Be vigilant of your belongings – Keep a close eye on luggage at airports and bus stations, and try to get a taxi to your onward destination as soon as you arrive. Try not to walk around town with your luggage: leave it with a friend or at a reliable hotel if you need to go out. Valuables such as your passport and money should be kept in a zip-locked bag close to your body and well-hidden under clothing, or left in a safe in a reliable hotel.
- Be aware transportation accidents are a problem – Travelers are advised to exercise caution if using long-distance buses in the country, as they are often involved in accidents which can be fatal. There have also been a number of devastating ferry disasters on Lake Victoria in recent years. Travelers are advised to be vigilant and not get on a ferry if they perceive it to be overcrowded or unseaworthy.
- Exercise caution if self-driving in Tanzania – Travelers should be very careful on the roads in general to minimize the chances of an accident. Drive-by robberies can also be a problem, so keep all vehicle side windows up when stopped in traffic and keep bags and valuables out of sight.
- Check local updates before traveling to western Tanzania – This area, especially along the border with Burundi, can be prone to outbursts of banditry and political unrest. Get a local update before making any plans to visit the region.
Those traveling with the Tanzania tourist visa who follow these safety tips will be able to enjoy a comfortable, hassle-free trip to the country, and concentrate on taking in all the inspiring natural wonders that Tanzania has to offer.
Apply for the Tanzania Visa Online
In order to visit the country, the majority of foreign passport holders are able to obtain either a Tanzania electronic visa or a visa on arrival at Tanzanian border entry points. However, obtaining a visa on arrival can involve long waiting times to complete an application at the border. Therefore, travelers are advised to apply for the eVisa for Tanzania online before departure.
For the majority of foreign citizens, the Tanzania eVisa is available as a single entry visa which allows a maximum stay of 90 consecutive days in the country. A Tanzania multiple entry visa with a total validity of 12 months is available for citizens of the United States only.
In order to apply, it is first necessary to meet the Tanzania eVisa requirements, which involve having a passport from an eligible country valid for at least 6 months from the date of application. Applicants are also required to provide a scan of the passport information page, a digital photograph, and a credit or debit card to pay the visa fee.
Eligible citizens are able to apply through the simple Tanzania eVisa application form, which takes just minutes to fill in with some personal and passport information. Applicants are also required to provide a current email address at which to receive a copy of the eVisa, which they can then print to present on arrival at the Tanzanian border.