The national language of Botswana is Setswana, however English is an official language of the country. English is widely spoken, especially in the lodges and hotels. Translators are also available in certain regions via prior request.
The national currency is the Pula, which is divided into100 Thebe. The easiest currencies to convert in Botswana are the US dollar, GB Pound and South African Rand. Foreign currency and travelers checks can be changed at banks, bureaux de change and authorized hotels. ATMs will accept most visa cards, and most credit cards can be used in accommodating lodges and hotels.
Banking hours are usually from Monday to Friday
08h30 to 15h30
08h30 to 10h30
Electricity is supplied at 220/240V in Botswana, and there are charging facilities in almost every lodge and hotel. Most will also have international adaptors available however it is wise to travel with one incase.
There are several shops and shopping centers in Maun and Kasane where basic commodities can be obtained.
Botswana is two hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time.
One hour ahead of Central European Time.
Seven hours ahead of Eastern USA time.
Ten hours ahead of Western USA time.
There is WIFI available at most lodges and hotels, however some are located in remote areas that will not be covered by internet or cellphone reception. There are public telephones located in even remote areas of Botswana. SIM cards can be purchased for cellphones in most shops and service stations. The main cellular network providers are Mascom, Orange and Mobile.
The dialing code for Botswana is +267.
CLIMATE & TERRAIN
The Kalahari Desert covers approx. 84 % of the surface of Botswana. About 2 thirds of the country lies in the tropics. Botswana has a generally flat landscape, will a few small hills located in the eastern regions. Areas of Botswana can get very hot during certain seasons, with some places reaching temperatures between 35 - 40°C during the day. It is important to stay hydrated and take precautions against sunburn.
HEALTH & SAFETY
Botswana in considered on of the healthiest countries in sub-Saharan Africa. There are good health care facilities available across the country. The popular tourist destinations of Botswana are malaria zones and it is recommended that visitors visit their doctors a few weeks before their date of travel and begin a course of anti-malaria tablets prior to entering the country. It is advisable to keep your valuables locked away or on your person.
VISAS & TRAVEL
Citizens of most Commonwealth countries do not need visas to enter into Botswana. For countries where Botswana has no diplomatic representation, visa processing is available through British Embassies and High Commissions.
Please click here for visa requirements for your country.