Home » Tanzania Vacations » Tanzania Travel Tips

Tanzania Travel Tips

Tanzania travel tips on money saving, personal safety, sightseeing, and enjoying your trip to the fullest from InfoHub suppliers and community members.

Safety, Single Traveler, Traveling with Children
Submitted by M19497
Safety: Tanzania is generally a safe country, but you should take the usual precautions: keep a close eye on your belongings, beware of pickpockets, and use hotel safes.

Single Traveler: If you are planning to travel alone and are worried that we won’t be able to accommodate you, let us put that concern to rest! If you want to, we will try to link you with another group, or we’ll give you the best price as a single traveler.

Traveling with Children: Tanzanians love children! And your children will ... view more benefit in so many ways by visiting a different country with such diverse cultures. However, traveling with children is probably much different than you are accustomed to and will require careful planning. Canned baby food, formula, and disposable diapers can be found in larger cities, though variety is minimal. Car seats are not commonly used. Traveling with children also requires heightened vigilance on your part to protect them from injury and illness, particularly those under two who may not be able to receive all necessary vaccinations.
Tanzania Insurance, Health Issues, Passport & Visa
Submitted by M19497
Insurance: You are required to purchase a comprehensive travel insurance policy to cover all aspects of your holiday including the loss of deposit through cancellation, loss of baggage and personal items, personal injury and death, inclement weather clause, pre-existing medical condition waiver (includes traveling parties and immediate family).

Health Issues: Consult your physician and local health department to determine the recommended vaccinations and medications for travel to Tanzania. Be sure to have your ... view more vaccinations completed before departure. Malaria is endemic to Tanzania but is preventable by taking anti-malaria prophylactics, using repellent and mosquito nets, and wearing long sleeves and pants. Typhoid is common among Tanzanians, but is also preventable by drinking only bottled or boiled water and avoiding ice cubes, salads, and poorly prepared foods.

HIV/Aids is widespread, especially in populated areas. Dysentery is also common due to poor hygiene and food handling practices. For this reason we strongly urge you to avoid buying food from street vendors and eating at small out-of-the-way snack bars. Most hotels prepare food very well, and the restaurants we recommend have a good track record. Any food you purchase should be thoroughly washed and peeled before consuming.

Passport & Visa: You are required to have a Passport before leaving your country of origin. If you do not have a Passport, apply for one at the U.S. Postal Service or through the proper agency in your country. Processing can take up to several months, so prepare early.

Medical Insurance: We strongly urge you to check with your health insurance provider prior to your trip to determine whether your policy applies overseas and whether you are covered in the event you require emergency medical attention.

Tanzania weather
Submitted by M19497
Tanzania is one of the most popular safari destinations in the world. It is home to about 120 tribal groups, representative of all the major ethnic and linguistic groups in Africa. It is among the most politically stable countries in Africa.

Tanzania lies in the tropical region just below the equator, so the coolest months occur during the northern hemisphere’s summer, or from May to October, when temperatures hover in the 60’s and 70’s (16 to 26 C). The hot season is between November and March when the ... view more temperatures range in the 70’s and 80’s (21 to 32 C).

The heaviest rains occur April-June. The months of July through November bring the most pleasant weather and the short rains, but the landscape is starker. Naturally, more tourists come in July-September. Zebra and wildebeest migrations to the Serengeti are in full swing and large populations of elephants are drawn to the river in Tarangire.

December to March is the summer season, but this is an excellent game viewing time because the wildebeest are beginning their migration into Ngorongoro and the Serengeti and calving season begins the end of January into March. The clearest and warmest climbing conditions for Mt. Kilimanjaro and Mt. Meru occur during the months of December to February.

Water Safety
Submitted by M19497
We recommend that you do not drink or brush your teeth with water from any tap (including ice), but rather drink bottled or boiled water.
Local Customs
Submitted by M19497
Tipping: Service staff may be tipped 10-15% for exceptional service, though not obligatory.

Dos and Don’ts:

- Be sensitive to those around you. Westerners are often indiscreet without realizing because we don’t understand some of the cultural differences in clothing, hygiene, service, food, etc. As a result, some comments we make are offensive if overheard. (For example, “I can’t believe they ...!”)
- Giving out candy, pens, and money should only be done as an expression of appreciation or ... view more friendship. Indiscriminate handouts encourage begging. The government of Tanzania is trying to discourage begging as well.
- When photographing people, consider how you would feel being photographed in the same situation. No one wants to feel like they are a spectacle.
- Women should avoid revealing or tight-fitting clothing since customs and culture are conservative.

Submitted by M19171
For recharging, Kenya works on 3 square pin plugs, and lodges should have an adapter. But suggest you bring one – there may be others wanting to use them. A telephoto lens (minimum 200/300mm). Flash for night photography.

Bring camera cleaning equipment and a good dust proof bag. For videos - bring spare batteries. Spare batteries, camera battery and storage cards - you will be taking lots of photos.
Submitted by M19171
All camps/lodges have a daily laundry service, so do not bring too many:
- 3 sets bush colored safari outfits (long / shorts / shirts) in green / brown / dark khaki (not pale fashion khaki / cream / white)
- 2 sets casual evening clothes (long trousers to reduce insect bites).

Sept to April, one light outer layer. May - August: 2 warm medium weight outer layers. 1 medium weight sweater (or 2 light). Warm jacket in winter (June / July / early Aug).
Visa and General Tips for Tanzania
Submitted by M19507
Visas: Check current requirements with the nearest Tanzanian High Commission, embassy or consulate.Visas, if required, can be bought on arrival at all International Airports and overland borders.

Time: 3hrs + GMT.

Electricity: 230 V, but power failures, surges and troughs are common. Bring a universal adapter and a torch (flashlight) or headlamp.

Driving: On the left. We plan long safaris carefully, ensuring your vehicle is road worthy with two spare tyres, an operational jack and tool kit. We carry extra ... view more fuel, spares and water.

Travel with children: Tanzanians love children and are especially helpful to mothers. However, canned baby foods, powdered milk and disposable nappies may not be available outside major towns.

Gifts: Don’t indiscriminately hand out pens, money and sweets like a wealthy western Santa clause-it just encourages begging. As anywhere, gifts should be given as a true expression of friendship, appreciation or thanks.

Shopping: The tourist areas and hotels sell a wide range of souvenirs, jewelery and trinkets. Don’t be afraid to haggle at roadside curio stalls.

Money, Tiping & Insurance in Tanzania
Submitted by M19507
Money: Major foreign currencies-particularly USD-and travelers cheques are accepted and are convertible at banks and bureaux de changes in the main towns and tourist areas. Credit cards are not widely accepted and carry poor exchange rates. Some banks in Arusha, Dar es Salaam and Moshi offer ATM facilities against International Credit Cards, but ATM’s are not available elsewhere. Don’t change money in the street.

Insurance: Take out Travel Insurance to cover loss of baggage or valuables, personal accident ... view more and medical expenses.

Tipping: Not obligatory, but a tip for exceptional service {max 10%} will be appreciated. Dollar 10-15 per day for driver or Tour Guide. An excessive tip can make it difficult for the next customer.

On Safari and Mountain Climbing
Submitted by M19507
For Mount Kilimanjaro Climbers: Climb slowly to increase your acclimatization time and maximize your chances of reaching the summit. To avoid altitude sickness, allow a minimum of five nights, preferably even more for the climb.

On Safari: Distances in Tanzania are vast, and travel by road can be wearing. Plan to spend more time in fewer parks. You’ll see more and won’t return home exhausted. Keep your distance from animals and be quite to avoid distressing the wildlife. Follow instructions of rangers or ... view more guides. Don’t leave your vehicle in the parks except in designated places. Keep to recognized tracks to avoid damaging vegetation.

Photography: Digital Photographers should bring lots of memory cards and/or a travel disk for backup. Recharge your batteries every night as power is not stable in all camps, but no problem in the hotels.

Language, Health, Climat and More
Submitted by M19507
Language: English is widely spoken but a few words of Swahili can be useful and will be appreciated greatly by locals.

Health: Yellow fever vaccination is no longer compulsory. Malaria is endemic but is preventable. Use insect repellent, cover up at sundown, sleep under a mosquito net and take anti-malaria prophylactics as advised by your doctor. Bring prescription medicines, spare glasses, contact lenses and solution as well as sunscreen, a first aid kit, cream for bites/sting and diarrhea remedy. Drink only ... view more boiled or bottled water, bottled or canned drinks, avoid ice cubes and salads. HIV/Aids is widespread, especially in the main tourist areas.

Security: Tanzania is a generally safe country, but don’t invite temptation. Keep an eye on your belongings. Don’t walk in the towns or cities at night-take a taxi or arrange by your driver. Don’t carry cameras or large amounts of cash, beware of pickpock, etc. Use hotel safety deposit boxes to safeguard valuables and obtain a receipt. Leave valuable jewelers at your hotel.

Climate: Generally dry and hot with cool nights/morning June-October, short rains November to Mid-December, long rains March-May but the seasons can vary. The coastal strips are hot and humid all year round. Temperatures on Mount Kilimanjaro and Meru drop to below freezing.

Clothes: Pack lightweight, washable clothes plus a sweater for early morning game drives, as well as a sun hut sunglasses and sunscreen. Long sleeves and trousers in light-colored fabrics help discourage insect bites. You can buy clothes in Arusha.Shorts for women are acceptable {but not too short}. Women should carry a wrap to cover legs in the villages and towns as revealing clothes can cause offence, especially in Zanzibar and Moslem areas. On the beach and within the confines of beach hotels normal swimmer is acceptable {but not nudity}. For climbing on Kilimanjaro or Meru, take thermal underwear, light layers, sweater, vain jacket, good socks and sturdy boots.

What to bring
Submitted by M19171
1. You should always travel with soft bags, not hard suitcases (not only for the smaller aircraft but also to fit into vehicles).
2. If you are using a small plane at any point of the safari then do not exceed 20kg (this is relevant for all internal flights other than Nairobi/Wilson/Kilimanjaro, where the limit is 15kg).
3. Packing list:
- A hat
- Sunglasses
- High strength sun screen
- Moisturizer
- Lip salve
- Strong insect repellent
- Anti-histamine cream and tablets should always be carried.

Nearly ... view more all hotels and camps now have shampoo and body lotion.
Tips for Travellers to Tanzania
Submitted by M18789
Immunization and Health:

Visitors from countries infected with Cholera and Yellow fever must produce international certificates of vaccination; this is particularly relevant for those traveling from neighboring African countries.

The UK Department of Health recommends vaccinations against Hepatitis A, polio and typhoid. It is essential for visitors to take a course of anti-malaria tablets commencing two weeks before travel.

Modern medical services are available in Dar es Salaam and other major Centres. ... view more There are only a limited number of chemists in the country, so visitors are advised to bring their own medicines with them.

What to Take:
- Don’t forget the camera, camcorder and binoculars and take a torch for finding your way around your camp at night.
- Stock up with replacement batteries for all these goods.
- Take sunglasses, hat, sun lotion, lip balm and some insect repellent.
- It is better not to get stung even if you are taking ant- malaria tablets.
- It’s best to take any medicines required for the duration of the visit.
- A spare pair of glasses or contact lenses is also a good idea.
- Take plenty of films; it is difficult to obtain outside the main centers.
- Traveler's cheques can be exchanged in cities and towns. Banking facilities in remote areas are restricted, so take plenty of cash.

Travel Light:
Some safari/air charters limit baggage to a 10 - 15 kilo maximum.

English is widely spoken but a few words of Swahili are appreciated.

- The unit of currency is the Tanzanian Shilling, which is divided into 100 cents. Visitors can take in any amount of foreign currency.
- Credit cards are not widely accepted and carry poor exchange rates.

On Safari:
Distances in Tanzania are vast, and travel by road can be tiring, It is wise to spend more time in few parks. You will see more and won’t return home exhausted. Keep your distance from animals and be quiet to avoid distressing them.

What are the best destinations in Africa?
Submitted by M05203
Kenya, South Africa and Tanzania are the most popular destinations, but deciding what you want to do is just as important as looking at where you want to go.
There are many types of safari available these days, from family safaris, night and walking safaris, to horse-riding and canoeing.

Kenya is considered by many to be the home of safari, with 59 wildlife parks and reserves, the Masai Mara being the best known and most visited. It's affordable, especially if you join a package tour, or camp.

South ... view more Africa. The Kruger National Park is probably the best-known game park in South Africa, which is generally thought to be a good value destination. You can expect to find the big five here, as well as small animals like the bushbaby and meerkat.

Botswana and Tanzania. If you're after an individually tailored trip, Botswana or Tanzania could be for you. The trips here tend to be more exclusive, and, as you often have to fly to remote, inaccessible destinations, the price can really hike up. You can do safari DIY-style, but beware - wildlife tends to live away from the beaten track, so you'll more than likely need a guide, transport and accommodation.

Namibia has quickly become a good value destination, with safaris taking place in stunning desert landscapes. Camping here is also an excellent option for those on a shoestring.

Zambia is often described as Africa's big secret because of it’s wonderful wildlife, and very few visitors. A good option if you want to avoid the tourist crowds.

Mozambique is also becoming very popular. After your safari, you can choose to relax on the stunning coast, or one of the beautiful offshore islands.

Uganda is a must if you are interested in seeing gorillas and chimps, and it offers one of the best water rafting experience in the world.

previous 15 tips  -  1  -  2  -  3  -  4  -  [ 5 ]