Sunday, 25 November 2018

BOTSWANA: Tourist Visa On Arrival Introduced In Botswana

In an effort to improve the ease of doing business in Botswana,Botswana will offer TOURIST VISA at point of entry effective 24th November 2018. This announcement was made by HE, The President of Botswana, Dr Mokgweetsi Masisi at the HLCC meeting held today( 15-Nov-2018)

Botswana has become the latest African nation to relax visa requirements in a bid to improve tourism and the ease of doing business in the country.

The Southern African nation will offer tourist visas on arrival effective November 24, the president announced.

President Mokgweetsi Masisi, who is expected to attend this weekend’s extraordinary African Union summit in Ethiopia, announced the new visa development on Thursday.

While the African Union (AU) set a 2018 deadline for the removal of visa requirements for all African citizens in all African countries, a recent AU report found that Africans can travel without a visa to just 22% of other African countries.

Rwanda, Benin and recently Ethiopia, are some of the African nations that relaxed visa requirements for all African citizens this year.

It is exactly 53 days before the year comes to an end and we usher in 2019. Many of us made resolutions in the beginning of the year, well we have a few days left to accomplish our goals. With this in mind I would like to go back to a major goal that encompasses our continent.

The African Union set a 2018 deadline for the removal of visa requirements for all African citizens in all African countries.

The Free Movement of Persons and the African Passport policy was adopted by the African Union at the 27th ordinary session held in Kigali, Rwanda in July 2016.

African states were expected to adopt the African passport and work closely with the AU Commission to facilitate its issuance at the national level based on international, continental and national policy provisions and continental design and specifications.

How far along have we come one may ask? A recent AU report found that Africans can travel without a visa to just 22% of other African countries.

What is Visa?

A visa is the authority given to foreign nationals to enter Botswana.

Who is eligible to apply for this service?

All Citizens of Commonwealth countries do not require visa except those from Bangladesh, Cameroon, Ghana, India, Nigeria, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka. Foreign nationals whose countries have signed a Visa Abolition Agreement with Botswana are also not required to apply for a visa.

N.B. Those who have permits but decide to stay outside the country for more than six months are required to apply for a visa when they come back to Botswana.

What is required for application of this service?

- Covering letter from the host.

- Certified copies of permits (work and residence) from the host or the National Identity Card (Omang).

- Application form filled by the applicant.

- Itinerary or flight schedule

- Copies of business documents (if the host is running a business).

- Copies of marriage certificate, birth certificate, and ordination certificate (pastors)

- Bank statements and hotel bookings.

Where can I apply for a visa?

There are 20 diplomatic missions in 17 countries around the world where visa applications can also be made: Australia, Belgium, Brazil, China, Ethiopia, India, Japan, Kenya, Namibia, Nigeria, South Africa (Pretoria, Johannesburg, Cape Town), Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, United Nations(New York), Zambia and Zimbabwe.

List of countries whose nationals/citizens do not require a visa for entry into Botswana.

- All Commonwealth countries (except for Bangaldesh,Cameroon,Ghana, India, Nigeria, Pakistan and Sri Lanka).

- Agentina

- Angola

- Austria

- Bahrain

- Belgium

- Brazil

- Bulgaria

- Chile

- Czech Republic

- Costa Rica

- Croatia

- Cuba

- Denmark

- Dominican Republic

- Estonia

- Federal Republic of Germany

- Finland

- France

- Greece

- Holy See

- Iceland

- Israel

- Italy

- Japan

- Kuwait

- Latvia

- Liechtenstin

- Luxembourg

- Mexico

- Monaco

- Netherlands

- Norway and Colonies

- Oman

- Paraguay

- Peru

- Poland

- Portugal

- Qatar

- Republic of Ireland

- Romania

- Russian Federation

- San Marino

- Slovak Republic

- Slovania

- South Arabia

- South Korea

- South Sudan

- Spain

- Sweden

- Switzerland

- Turkey

- United Arab Emirates

- United States of America

- Uruguay

- Venezuela

- Zambia

- Zimbabwe

NB: All countries that are not listed require visa for entry into Botswana.

Applicants can also submit applications at Regional and District Offices around the country.

How long does it take to get a visa?

7 - 14 days

NB: Customers are expected to collect their passports within seven days and if they don’t they are phoned to come and collect them. Those who applied at the Regional and District Offices are posted back to the responses at their respective offices.

Downloadable Form

Visas for Botswana


Passport Requirements
A passport is required by all travellers except the following:
1. Travellers with a 'Laissez Passer' that is issued by the United Nations.

2. Travellers with a document issued to people without nationality or citizenship and refugees according to the UN Convention.

Document Validity

Passports and alternative papers, or either of them, must be valid on arrival.

Visa Issuance

Before arrival: A visa may be issued, if necessary, by the Immigration and Passport Control Office (Post Office Box no. 942, Gaborone); or by representations of Botswana abroad; or by British embassies or consulates in countries where Botswana hasn't representation. However, applicants from South Africa may apply directly to the Immigration and Passport Control Office (Post Office Box no. 942, Gaborone, Botswana).

Visa Exemptions

All travellers must hold a visa except the following:
1. Citizens of Botswana.

2. Travellers staying for no more than 90 days for the following travellers:

2.1. Travellers with British passports regardless of endorsement in passport concerning their citizenship.

2.2. Travellers with passports issued by Hong Kong (A Special Administrative Region of China).

2.3. Citizens of Antigua & Barbuda, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Barbados, Belgium, Belize, Brazil, Brunei, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cyprus, Denmark, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Estonia, Fiji, Finland, France, Gambia, Germany, Greece, Grenada, Guyana, Iceland, Republic of Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Kenya, Kiribati, Republic of Korea, Kuwait, Latvia, Lesotho, Lichtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Malta, Mauritius, Mexico, Monaco, Namibia, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Papua New Guinea, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Samoa San Marino, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Solomon Islands, South Africa, Spain, St. Kitts-Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent & the Grenadines, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, Tanzania, Tonga, Trinidad & Tobago, Tuvalu, Uganda, Uruguay, United States of America, Vanuatu, Vatican City, Venezuela, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

2.4. Travellers with United Nations travel documents so long as such documents are issued by the Botswana Government and endorsed with a return clause; other travellers with United Nations travel documents need an entry visa.

2.5. Travellers with documents issued to refugees and people without nationality or citizenship according to the UN Convention. However, a visa before arrival is required if those travellers are not visa-exempted according to their nationality.

3. Travellers with a residence permit that is issued by Botswana.

TWOV (Transit Without Visa)

TWOV is permissible for travellers continuing their trip via the same or first connecting plane without leaving the airport.

Additional information

1. Travellers must have enough money for their stay in Botswana and return or onward tickets.

2. Any traveller, whether requiring a visa or not, who wants to stay in Botswana for more than 90 days should apply for a prior permission for an extended period. This permission should be applied to the Immigration and Passport Control Office (Post Office Box no. 942, Gaborone). No visitor is allowed to work or to look for work.


Import regulations

Travellers are allowed free import of:
- 50 millilitres of perfume and 250 millilitres of toilet water.
- One litre of alcoholic drinks and two litres of wine.
- Gift articles up to a total value of BWP 500.
- 250 grammes of tobacco, 50 cigars and 400 cigarettes.

Export regulations

Free export of souvenirs and presents up to a value of BWP 500.


Pets are allowed to enter. As for cats and dogs, they must be accompanied by an import permit from the Director of Veterinary Services (located at Private Bag 0032, Gaborone, Botswana). Furthermore, a health certificate is required indicating that the animal was immunized with the Flury or Kelev vaccine against rabies not less than 30 days and not more than 3 years before importation for dogs; and not less than one month and not more than one year before importation for cat.

Baggage Clearance regulations

A traveller's luggage should be cleared at the airport of final destination in Botswana.
* Exemptions:
Luggage of transit travellers whose destination is outside Botswana.

Airport tax

Travellers are not required to pay any airport tax upon their departure from the airport.

Currency Import regulations

There are no restrictions on importing local currency (Botswana Pula-BWP) and foreign currencies provided imported sums are declared.

Currency Export regulations

Travellers are allowed to export local currency (Botswana Pula-BWP) up to BWP 50.

Travellers are allowed to export foreign currencies up to the amount that is imported and declared.

Additional Information on regulations

Travellers have to declare all articles with serial numbers by means of form no. DA65. On their departure day, travellers have to endorse that form by the Customs Officer on duty. On the other hand, all valuable commodities without serial numbers have to be declared via an NEP-form, which travellers can acquire, fill in and stamp at any commercial bank. On their departure day, travellers have to endorse that form by the Customs Officer on duty.

Arms and Ammunition regulations

Ammunition and firearms have to be declared upon arrival. If goods are re-imported, the traveller must show the DA65 form or the NEP form that was issued on his/her departure.

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