General Information


English is an official language in Botswana. It is taught at schools, and is widely spoken in all urban centres. Even in rural areas, many local villagers (especially younger ones who have received schooling) will be able to converse in English. All guides and general staff in the camps, lodges and hotel have got a good command of English. 

German, Italian and French translators are available on request – request through your travel operator or agent. When staying at a private camp or lodge, your guide will very often be able to introduce you to his or her friends and family, and will act as interpreter if necessary. Some amazing interaction with local people is possible, and more than likely to occur while on your trip to Botswana.

Electrical Supply

Electricity is supplied at 220/240v. Both square and round wall plugs are used.

Firearms & Ammunition

The issue of firearms licenses in Botswana is strictly controlled, and all firearms imported under the authority of an import permit must be licensed immediately upon arrival in Botswana. The importation of firearms that do not have the manufacturer’s serial number or other number by which they can be identified, stamped or engraved on a metal part of the weapon is totally prohibited.

It should also be noted that police permits for firearms are issued on a limited quota basis, and there can be a considerable delay in obtaining a permit, particularly on first importation. It is advisable for intending importers to make applications well in advance of dispatch, so that unnecessary inconvenience and expenses can be avoided.

Police permits for firearms are issued by:

Central Arms, The Registry

P O Box 334, Gaborone.

Tel: +267 391-4202, +267 391-4106

Diamond Purchase

Visitors to Botswana have the opportunity to purchase diamond jewellery from authorised dealers. A strict certification system is in place to inform the buyer of the origin of the diamond, and the stated value and quality is verified.

Gratuity Guide

In Botswana, one is not under any obligation to offer gratuity (tips) for services rendered at restaurants, bars, hotels, etc. It is at the discretion of the individual whether or not to pay gratuity for services.

Emergency Numbers

Ambulance 997 (Toll Free)
Police 999 (Toll Free)
Fire Brigade 998 (Toll Free)
Medical Rescue 911 (Toll Free)
Medical Air Rescue 390-1601
Mascom 122
Orange 112
Be Mobile 1333


Tourist Reviews

My husband and I love running and we are travelling in Botswana for three months. We've already done one safari and we'll be doing a few more. What I want to share is my running experience in Botswana. Once you get a bit out of the city,...

Travel Info

What to Bring/Wear

What to Bring

Binoculars, torch, insect repellent, lip salve, sunscreen, sunglasses. Cosmetics, medications, and cigarettes are all available in the major towns, but if specific brand names are needed, it is best to bri