Currency: Zimbabwe Dollar (ZWL)
The government announced the reintroduction of the Zimbabwean Dollar in June 2019. It is now replacing the era after years without its own currency and the US Dollar as the sole means of payment after the hyperinflation of 2009. The impact on international travellers is therefore exceedingly small. A hard currency like the US Dollar is still very welcome in Zimbabwe.
In all larger towns there are ATMs where you can withdraw cash with international credit cards (Visa preferred, sometimes Mastercard), and in some cases you can also withdraw money with debit cards. Your card needs to have a chip and pin. Cashless payment by credit card (mainly Visa) is possible in hotels, restaurants and supermarkets in larger cities, debit cards are rarely accepted for direct payments. Visa fees can be paid in USD upon entry, as can the entrance fees e.g. for Victoria Falls. While changing money at an exchange office is possible, it is not recommended as it is often a complicated and lengthy process.
Please be sure to advise your bank before you travel that you will be using your card in a different country as they may block access to your card if they do not know that you are currently travelling.
For current exchange rates please use this website.
Official languages: Zimbabwe has 16 official languages, namely Chewa, Chibarwe, English, Kalanga, Koisan, Nambya, Ndau, Ndebele, Shangani, Shona, sign language, Sotho, Tonga, Tswana, Venda, and Xhosa.
Visa: Please have a look at this list to see if you need to apply for a visa before travelling.
Please also consult the Zimbabwean Embassy or Consulate for any updates before departure, especially when travelling with children.
Independence: 18 April 1980 from Britain
Religion: Christian 93%, Muslim & Other 1.3%, No religious beliefs 5.7%
Souvenirs: Fabrics, ceramics, weaved baskets, masks, bronze figures
Agricultural products: Cotton, tobacco, coffee, peanuts, various fruits, corn, wheat
Main Industries: Mining (coal, gold, platinum, copper, nickel, tin, clay, numerous metallic and non-metallic ores), steel, wood products, cement, chemicals, fertilizer, clothing, and footwear
Best time to visit: With mild temperatures, virtually no rain and a low malaria risk, the dry May to October winter season is generally seen as the best time to visit Zimbabwe for game-viewing, although note that September and October are extremely hot and dry months.
The best time to travel to Victoria Falls on the other hand is at the end of the summer rainy season when the falls are in full flood -go between April and May for the most dramatic views.