Travel to Zambia
Flying to Zambia
Direct non-stop flights to Zambia from London are provided by British Airways (www.ba.com), which connects London Heathrow Airport with the Zambian capital, Lusaka. Alternatively, you can fly from London to Zambia with South African Airways (www.flysaa.com), which flies to Lusaka and Livingstone via Johannesburg; KLM (www.klm.com), which flies to Lusaka via Amsterdam; and Kenya Airways (www.kenya-airways.com), which flies to Lusaka via Nairobi. There are also international airports at Mfuwe, near South Luangwa National Park, and Ndola, in the copper mining region. Fares are usually lowest in the rainy season, December to March, excluding Christmas and New Year.
Zambia currently has no national airline. It is an ambition of the current president, Michael Sata, to address this by supporting the launch of a Zambian service but for the present it’s unclear when this might take place.
It takes around 13 hours to fly from London to Lusaka (excluding stopovers, if any).
US$25 for international flights and US$8 for domestic flights. This is usually included in airline ticket prices; if not, it is payable at the airport in US dollars. Transit passengers and children under two years are exempt. A recently introduced additional airport tax (Airport Development Infrastructure Fee) is 54,800 K (approx $6) per person for international flights, payable in cash on departure.
Travel by rail
Tanzania-Zambia Railways Authority (TAZARA) (tel: 286 2406; www.tazarasite.com) operates trains from Dar es Salaam in Tanzania to Kapiri Mposhi in central Zambia. The train, the Mukuba Express departs Tanzania on Tuesdays and Fridays, arriving in Zambia two days later. There are 1st, 2nd, and 3rd class berths, with a dining car on board. Tickets should be booked in advance.
By rail note:
Zambia’s railway lines and trains are in poor repair and services are often suspended. It is advisable to check at the tourist office in Lusaka before travelling. There are currently no scheduled passenger trains between Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe and Livingstone in Zambia.
Driving to Zambia
The easiest overland routes into Zambia are to and from Zimbabwe, which in turn is well connected to South Africa. It’s also straightforward to drive to Livingstone from the Namibia’s Caprivi Strip, northern Botswana, Malawi and southwest Tanzania. Border crossings are generally open 0600-1800 except for the Victoria Falls crossing which closes at 2000.
Getting to Zambia by boat
There is a ferry service to Mpulungu in northern Zambia across Lake Tanganyika from Kigoma in Tanzania and Bujumbura in Burundi which runs twice a month. It’s provided by the MV Liemba, is a historic steam ship. It is often subject to long delays.
The MV Liemba (+255 280 2811) runs every 2 weeks from Mpulungu in northern Zambia along the eastern shore of Lake Tanganyika to Kigoma in Tanzania and Bujumbura in Burundi.
A pontoon ferry crosses the Zambezi River from Botswana to southern Zambia at Kazungula. It runs daily but departure depends on how full the ferry is and there is no strict departure schedule.