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Visas & Immigration
All visitors entering Botswana must hold a passport that is valid for at least six months, except those with United Nations Convention travel documents. Visitors must also have outgoing travel documents and sufficient funds to finance their stay.
Valid entry visas for the countries which do require them may be obtained from Botswana's various embassies and high commissions abroad. In countries where Botswana is not represented, visas may be obtained from the British High Commission. Entry visas obtained at border posts are valid for a maximum of 30-90 days. Extensions may be obtained from any immigration office in Botswana. No visitor is allowed more than a 90-day stay in every calendar year, unless permission has been granted in the form of a waiver pending the outcome of a residence permit application.
Botswana has a well-developed road network with easy access to its neighbouring countries. The vast majority of the roads are tarmac. Gaborone is only 360km from Johannesburg, with a good road link.The main entry points into Botswana are as follows:
- From Zimbabwe - Ramokgwebane, Pandamatenga and Kazungula
- From Namibia - Mamuno, Mohembo and Ngoma Bridge
- From Zambia - Kazungula Ferry
- From South Africa - Martin's Drift (from Northern Transvaal); Tlokweng (from Johannesburg); Ramatlabama (from Mafikeng) .
An easy way to reach Johannesburg is by mini-bus. There are mini-buses everyday from Gaborone to Mafikeng and Johannesburg departing from the main bus station in Gaborone. There are also buses to Johannesburg every day between 5:30 and 6:00 am.
Currently, there is no permanent passenger rail service between Botswana and neighbouring countries. However, the railway line that runs from Ramatlabama in the south border of the country to Ramokgwebana (north-east of Francistown) links Botswana to South Africa and Zimbabwe. (see border posts).
The best gateway to enter Botswana is via Johannesburg International Airport with regular connections throughout the whole world. Air Botswana flies regularly between Johannesburg, Harare and Victoria Falls with over 37 flights a week only to Johannesburg. If we include South African Airways, that would make two flights per day Gaborone - Johannesburg, with connections to and from Durban and Cape Town.
Botswana's main Airport is Sir Seretse Khama International Airport situated 15km from the capital of Gaborone, which has banks, a post office and duty free shop. Other airports receiving international flights include Francistown, Selebi-Phikwe, Maun and Kasane.