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Namibia Country Guide

  1. Country Facts
  2. Health
  3. Media
  1. Intro
  2. Geography
  3. People
  4. Travel
  5. Embassies & Visas
  6. Finance
  7. Cities/Regions

Quick Facts

Region: Africa
Full Name: Republic of Namibia
Capital City: Windhoek
Language Spoken: English 7% (official), Afrikaans common language of most of the population and about 60% of the white population, German 32%, indigenous languages (Oshivambo, Herero, Nama)

Namibia Travel Insurance

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Geographic data

22 00 S, 17 00 E

Elevation Extremes

lowest point: Atlantic Ocean 0 m highest point: Konigstein 2,606 m

Land boundaries

total: 3,936 km border countries: Angola 1,376 km, Botswana 1,360 km, South Africa 967 km, Zambia 233 km

Natural hazards

prolonged periods of drought

Natural resources

diamonds, copper, uranium, gold, lead, tin, lithium, cadmium, zinc, salt, hydropower, fish note: suspected deposits of oil, coal, and iron ore

Land use

arable land: 0.99% permanent crops: 0.01% other: 99% (2005)

Environmental current issues

very limited natural fresh water resources; desertification; wildlife poaching; land degradation has led to few conservation areas

Climate

The cold Benguela current keeps the coast of the Namib Desert cool, damp and free of rain for most of the year, with a thick coastal fog. Inland, all the rain falls in summer (November to April). Summer temperatures are high while the altitude means that nights are cool. Winter nights can be fairly cold, but days are generally warm and pleasant. Required clothing Light cottons, with slightly heavier cottons or light woolens for evening. Inland, shoes are essential during the day as the ground is very hot.

Time difference

time difference: UTC+1 daylight saving time: +1hr, begins first Sunday in September; ends first Sunday in April

Population

2,044,147 note: estimates for this country explicitly take into account the effects of excess mortality due to AIDS; this can result in lower life expectancy, higher infant mortality and death rates, lower population and growth rates, and changes in the distribution of population by age and sex than would otherwise be expected (July 2006 est.)

Age structure

0-14 years: 38.2% (male 393,878/female 387,147) 15-64 years: 58.1% (male 596,557/female 591,350) 65 years and over: 3.7% (male 34,245/female 40,970) (2006 est.)

Median age

total: 20 years male: 19.8 years female: 20.1 years (2006 est.)

Population growth rate

0.59% (2006 est.)

Birth rate

24.32 births/1,000 population (2006 est.)

Death rate

18.86 deaths/1,000 population (2006 est.)

Net migration rate

0.47 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2006 est.)

Sex ratio

at birth: 1.03 male(s)/female under 15 years: 1.02 male(s)/female 15-64 years: 1.01 male(s)/female 65 years and over: 0.84 male(s)/female total population: 1.01 male(s)/female (2006 est.)

Life expectancy at birth

total population: 43.39 years male: 44.46 years female: 42.29 years (2006 est.)

Total fertility rate

3.06 children born/woman (2006 est.)

Business Practices

Business meetings are generally formal and suits should be worn in winter, safari suits in summer. Namibia has a well-established and professional business community. Western customs prevail and normal courtesies should be shown. Prior appointments are necessary. English is widely spoken in business circles. Office hours are 0800-1700 Monday to Friday.

Crime

Incidents of violent crime directed against visitors to Namibia are rare, but petty crime is on the increase, particularly in urban areas. The most common criminal offenses committed in Windhoek are non-violent crimes of opportunity including pick-pocketing, purse snatching, vehicle theft, and vehicle break-ins. Commonsense measures such as not leaving valuables unattended in plain sight in parked cars, safeguarding purses, keeping wallets in front pockets, and being alert to one's surroundings are the best deterrents against becoming a victim of criminal activity. Avoid using taxis if possible, and never enter one on your own. Do not enter townships at night unless accompanied by someone with local knowledge. If possible, secure your passport and other valuable documents in a hotel safe. Carry separately a copy of valuable documents, for example passports and driving licenses. Exercise extra caution when traveling near the Angolan border, where banditry is a problem. Visitors should avoid purchasing diamonds and other protected resources outside of licensed retail establishments. The police in Windhoek are poorly trained and poorly paid. An immediate response to criminal activity is not guaranteed. After an incident police might be called and not only might they not respond in a timely manner, they may not respond at all. There have been reports of both.

Hotels

Visitors to the business centers of Windhoek and Walvis Bay/Swakopmund will find modern, well-equipped hotels with telephone and fax facilities. Secondary business centers all have adequate facilities. The main business hotels in Windhoek (The Safari Court Hotel and the Windhoek Country Club and Safari Hotel in Windhoek) and the Mokuti Lodge (at Etosha) all provide modern conference facilities. In Swakopmund the better hotels are the Swakopmund Hotel and Leisure Center, the Hansa Hotel. The Canyon Hotel is a good choice in Keetmanshoop.

Communications

Telephone IDD service is available in Namibia. The country code is 264 and the outgoing international code is 09. Most hotels have fax facilities. Good telex facilities are in all major centers.

Electricity

is a 220/240 volts AC. Outlets are of the 3-pin type. Electricity 220 volts AC, 50hz. Outlets are of the three-pin type.

Plug Types

D,M

Food And Dining

Restaurants and cafes reflect the German influence on Namibia, and most dining rooms offer a reasonable choice of local and continental cuisine.

National specialties:
? Biltong (air-dried meat).
? Rauchfleisch (smoked meat).
? Asparagus.
? Kalahari truffle.
? Seafood, especially oysters. National drinks:
? Tafel lager.
? Windhoek lager. Tipping : 10 per cent is customary.

Nightlife
In the central area of Windhoek, there are restaurants, cafes, a cinema and a theater.

Entry departure requirements

* Please see visa section below

Visa immigration information

Passports

Passport valid for a minimum of six months after the date of departure from Namibia required by all.

Visas

Required by all except the following for stays of up to 30 days:
(a) 1. nationals of countries shown in the chart above, except nationals of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Greece, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Slovak Republic and Slovenia who do require a visa;
(b) nationals of Angola, Botswana, Brazil, Cuba, Iceland, Kenya, Lesotho, Liechtenstein, Malawi, Malaysia, Mozambique, New Zealand, Norway, Russian Federation, Singapore, South Africa, Swaziland, Switzerland, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe;
(c) those continuing to a third country and not leaving the airport transit area.

Types of visa and cost

Tourist, Business and Transit: US$34

Validity

Valid up to three months from date of issue for stays of up to three months from date of entry. Extensions for a further three months are available from the Ministry of Home Affairs in Windhoek.

Application to

Consulate (or Consular section at High Commission); see Passport/Visa Information section.

Application requirements

(a) Valid passport. (b) Completed application form. (c) Two passport-size photos. (d) Return or onward ticket or proof of accommodation. (e) Fee. Private: (a)-(e) and, (f) Letter of invitation from Namibian resident. Business: (a)-(e) and, (f) Company letter. (g) Letter from sponsoring company in Namibia.

Working days required

Three.

Temporary residence

Apply to the High Commission or Embassy; see Passport/Visa Informationsection.

HIV entry requirements

No Test Required

Departure tax

None

Embassies

High Commission for the Republic of Namibia in the UK

6 Chandos Street, London W1G 9LU, UK
Tel: (020) 7636 6244.
Website: http://www.namibiahc.org.uk/
Opening hours: Mon-Fri 0900-1300 and 1400-1700.

Embassy of the Republic of Namibia in the USA

1605 New Hampshire Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20009, USA
Tel: (202) 986 0540.
Website: www.namibianembassyusa.org

Most visits to Namibia are trouble-free but you should be aware of the global risk of indiscriminate international terrorist attacks, which could be against civilian targets, including places frequented by foreigners.
If traveling along the Caprivi Strip, travelers should stick to the well-traveled routes.
Wildlife and livestock pose a serious hazard; travelers should avoid driving at night.
This advice is based on information provided by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in the UK. It is correct at time of publishing. As the situation can change rapidly, visitors are advised to contact the following organisaions for the latest travel advice.

British Foreign and Commonwealth Office

Website: www.fco.gov.uk

US Department of State

Website: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel.html

Currency

The Namibian Dollar (NAD; symbol N$) is in note denominations of N$200, 100, 50, 20 and 10. Coins are in denominations of N$5, N$1, 50 cents, 10 cents and 5 cents. It is linked to the South African Rand (R) on a 1:1 basis (South African Rand = 100 cents). The South African Rand is also acceptable as currency in Namibia.

Currency restrictions

The import and export of local currency is limited to NAD50,000. The import of foreign currency is unlimited, provided declared on arrival. Export of foreign currency is unlimited up to amount imported and declared as long as the departure is within 12 months. No limits exist for travel between Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia, South Africa and Swaziland as these countries are members of the same common monetary area.

Banking hours

Mon-Fri 0900-1530, Sat 0900-1100.

Currency exchange

Available in banks and at bureaux de change. A better rate of exchange can be obtained on travelers cheques than on cash.

Credit cards

American Express, Diners Club, MasterCard and Visa are accepted. Check with your credit or debit card company for details of merchant acceptability and other services which may be available. Credit cards are not usually accepted at petrol stations.

Travellers cheques

To avoid additional exchange rate charges, travelers are advised to take traveller's cheques in US Dollars or South African Rand.

City/RegionCity/Area codeFollowed by
Abenab(0)67+ 6 digit subscriber nr
Aminuis(0)63+ 6 digit subscriber nr
Anamulenge(0)65+ 6 digit subscriber nr
Aranos (party line)(0)6642+ 4 digit subscriber nr
Asab(0)668+ 5 digit subscriber nr
Babi-Babi(0)62+ 6 digit subscriber nr
Bagani(0)66+ 6 digit subscriber nr
Grenslyn(0)632538+ 2 digit subscriber nr
Helmeringhausen(party line)(0)6362+ 4 digit subscriber nr
Hobas(0)6342+ 4 digit subscriber nr
Keetmanshoop (party line)(0)638+ 5 digit subscriber nr
Koes (party line)(0)632532+ 2 digit subscriber nr
Kumakams(0)6638+ 4 digit subscriber nr
Omaere(0)628+ 5 digit subscriber nr
Oshikango Rurtel(0)6751+ 4 digit subscriber nr
Prosit(0)658+ 5 digit subscriber nr
Walvis Bay(0)64+ 6 digit subscriber nr
Windhoek(0)61+ 6 digit subscriber nr
  1. Health Information
  2. Recent Disease Outbreaks
  3. Hospital Database

Dental care

Avoid dental treatment as the standards of care and hygiene cannot be guaranteed.

Medication Availability

Some international medication is available from the hospitals and larger pharmacies in the bigger towns and cities. Check expiry dates as they are often out of date

Blood supplies

Blood supplies should be considered as unsafe in Mozambique

Medical facilities

Medical facilities are relatively modern, especially in the capital city of Windhoek.

General caution

Recent medical and dental exams should ensure that the traveler is in good health. Carry appropriate health and accident insurance documents and copies of any important medical records. Bring an adequate supply of all prescription and other medications as well as any necessary personal hygiene items, including a spare pair of eyeglasses or contact lenses if necessary. Drink only bottled beverages (including water) or beverages made with boiled water. Do not use ice cubes or eat raw seafood, rare meat or dairy products. Eat well-cooked foods while they are still hot and fruits that can be peeled without contamination. Avoid roadside stands and street vendors. Swim only in well-maintained, chlorinated pools or ocean water known to be free from pollution. Wear clothing that reduces exposed skin and apply repellents containing DEET to remaining areas. Sleep in well-screened accommodations. Carry anti-diarrheal medication. Reduce problems related to sun exposure by using sunglasses, wide-brimmed hats, sunscreen lotions and lip protection.

Specific concerns

AIDS occurs. Blood supply may not be adequately screened and/or single-use, disposable needles and syringes may be unavailable. When possible, travelers should defer medical treatment until reaching a facility where safety can be assured.

Immunization

Hepatitis A: Consider active immunization with hepatitis A vaccine or passive immunization with immune globulin (IG) for all susceptible travelers. Especially consider choosing active immunization for persons planning to reside for a long period or for persons who take frequent short-term trips to risk areas. The importance of protection against hepatitis A increases as length of stay increases. It is particularly important for persons who will be living in or visiting rural areas, eating or drinking in settings of poor or uncertain sanitation, or who will have close contact with local persons (especially young children) in settings with poor sanitary conditions. Hepatitis B: Vaccination is advised for health care workers, persons anticipating direct contact with blood from or sexual contact with inhabitants, and persons planning extended stays of 6 months or greater (especially those who anticipate using local health care facilities, staying in rural areas, or having intimate contact with the local population). Polio: A one-time booster dose is recommended for travelers who have previously completed a standard course of polio immunization. Refer to CDC guidelines for vaccinating unimmunized or incompletely immunized persons. Pregnancy is a relative contraindication to vaccination; however, if protection is needed, either IPV or OPV may be used, depending on preference and time available. Rabies: Preexposure vaccination should be considered for persons staying longer than 30 days who are expected to be at risk to bites from domestic and/or wild animals (particularly dogs), or for persons engaged in high risk activities such as spelunking or animal handling. Need for vaccination is more important if potential exposure is in rural areas and if adequate postexposure care is not readily available. Typhoid: Vaccination should be considered for persons staying longer than 3 weeks, adventurous eaters, and those who will venture off the usual tourist routes into small cities, villages and rural areas. Importance of vaccination increases as access to reasonable medical care becomes limited. Contraindications depend on vaccine type. Note: All routine vaccines (such as DTP or Td, Hib, MMR, polio, varicella, influenza and pneumococcal) should be kept up-to-date as a matter of good health practice unrelated to travel.

Disease risk summary

Insect-borne illness: unlikely to be a major health problem for the traveler (with the exception of malaria as noted). Plague - occurs Relapsing fever - occurs Rift Valley fever - occurs Tick-bite fever - occurs Trypanosomiasis (sleeping sickness) - occurs Typhus - occurs (mainly tick-borne) Food-borne and water-borne illness: these diseases are common in some areas, particularly amoebiasis and the typhoid fevers. Hepatitis occurs. Other hazards: Diseases such as measles and diphtheria are commonly reported. Polio is still considered a possible risk, although cases have rarely been reported in recent years. Influenza risk extends from May to October in areas south of the Tropic of Capricorn and throughout the year in areas north of that.

Entry requirements

Yellow fever: A yellow fever vaccination certificate is required from travelers coming from infected areas. The countries, or parts of countries, in the endemic zones are regarded as infected. Travelers on scheduled airlines whose flights have originated outside the areas regarded as infected and who are in transit through these areas are not required to possess a certificate provided they have remained at the scheduled airport or in the adjacent town during transit. All passengers whose flights have originated in one of these areas or who are traveling in transit through these areas on unscheduled flights are required to possess a certificate. The certificate is not insisted upon in the case of children under 1 year of age, but such infants may be subject to surveillance.

Recent disease outbreaks

No recent disease outbreaks

NameAddress
Cottage HospitalMosley ave Tamariskia Swakopmund
Katatura State HospitalPrivate Bag 13215 Windhoek
Otjiwarongo Medi-ClinicPO Box 1085 Otjiwarongo Sonn Street Otjiwarongo
Rhino Park Private HospitalRhino Park Horsea Kutako Drive Windhoek
Swakopmund State HospitalPrivate Bag 5004 Swakopmund
Welwitschia HospitalDr Putch Harries Drive Hermes Walvis bay Walvis Bay
Windhoek Medi-ClinicHeliodoor Street Windhoek Namibia

Media

Press freedom is provided for by the constitution and largely respected by the government. Opposition views are broadcast.
Press: Newspapers are printed Monday to Friday. English-language dailies include The Namibian, The Namibian Economist and New Era; weeklies include the Windhoek Observer. Die Republikein is a daily Afrikaans-language newspaper. Allgemeine Zeitung is published daily in German.
TV: The state-owned Namibian Broadcasting Corporation (NBC) broadcasts nationwide. Desert TV is a Windhoek-based private station.
Radio: State-run radio is operated by NBC. Private music stations include Radio Kudu, Radio Wave and Radio Energy. Katutura Community Radio (KCR) broadcasts some BBC World Service programs in Windhoek.

 

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