COVID-19 restrictions ease in Africa and Zimbabwe opened to air travel visitors. Meanwhile, South Africa already prepared airports for travel. Normality starts returning. But, everyone hears horror stories. And, much confusion rages about cross border travel. Now, good news comes from Alistar Rankin of Machaba Safaris who flew in and out of Zimbabwe without any hassle.
COVID-19 travel to Zimbabwe
We reported that the air travel out of South Africa geared up. And, now it happens, that sounds amazing. But, lots of people dislike the idea of a double COVID-19 test for people travelling between South Africa and Zimbabwe. Actually, road travel still sounds a bit complicated, but air travel seems reasonable. The good news came via Facebook from James of Varden Safaris in Zimbabwe,
And, on that note, if you love the wilderness and horses, I personally vouch for a fantastic break in the bush with his team. Actually, it’s been way too long since I last stayed at one of his camps. He shared a report that Alistair Rankin shared with him. And, as it might set your mind at ease if you hope for a trip to Zimbabwe by air during COVID-19, then this might cheer you up.”
The test on the South African side
A major worry focusses on the testing required in South Africa. A coronavirus test that stuffs a nose swab up there really puts people off. But, you can get a throat swab done, and a source told us they got that at a medical centre laboratory. Valid for 48 hours in Zimbabwe from the time of issue, it means making sure you tied up the test with the flight times. But, it’s doable, as Alistair pointed out.
In fact, he said, “The process was simple and both to and from South Africa. I felt everyone from airport officials and customs/immigration were there to help the process not hinder it.” And, he felt very welcome in Zimbabwe, as people thanked him for visiting the country. A quick transfer flight to the Victoria Falls revealed that some foreign travellers went there from Europe.
Lancet test in Victoria Falls and they have a team in Harare
According to Alistair, for his test back into South Africa, he went to Lancet in Victoria Falls. That time, he got a nose swab COVID-19 test. But, he survived the experience and it was all over inside of 20 minutes. And, he notes that Lancet also has a “team at the airport” in Harare. Next, he talked about the actual flights.
Obviously, travel involves sanitizers and masks. Alistair talked about walking through “a sort of spray tunnel,” thermometers, and people wearing masks. Apart from that, it looked very much like business as usual. And, he ended on a very positive note saying that things improve “daily for the better in Southern Africa as we slowly move to normal.”
Remember to follow us on Facebook for more news about travel in Africa during the COVID-19 pandemic.