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sub-Saharan Africa Topics specific to sub-Saharan Africa. (Includes all countries South of 17 degrees latitude)
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  #1  
Old 13 Dec 2012
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best way to travel uk to Zambia

hi any advice will be much appreciated , I am planning a trip to help my local school raise funds to build a school in Zambia .the intention is to leave northern ireland in march 2013 to travel solo on my xt600 to Zambia over approx 8weeks .I am not a complete novice as I have travelled from Alaska to argentena ,but Africa is a different ball game . I know that there will be many problems to overcome regarding organising visas and carnet and it is my intention to leave the bike with the SMA fathers in Zambia to use as they feel fit and I will have the use of the bike when I return to travel more of Africa the following year . i still don't know how this can be done so any helpful info here would be great .my next question is do you think it is possible to go through Tunisia Libya Egypt and sudan and if so can it be done without escorts .What is your experience of obtaining visas before leaving the uk for all the countrys listed + ethiopea Kenya Uganda Rwanda Burundi Tanzania Malawi and Zambia .I will be greatfull for any info and tips . thanks
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  #2  
Old 13 Dec 2012
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Libya is the question mark re the earlier part of your trip. People have certainly come that way on business visas in recent months but you need to do some research. I'd start at the embassy.

Otherwise at the moment you can get visas on the hoof for all the countries mentioned traveling north to south.

It may be a problem to leave the bike there indefinitely as you will need a carnet and would have to either forfeit your deposit/bond/insurance policy if you didn't return it to the UK (or alternatively import it into Zambia and pay duty which may not be economical). Have a without prejudice (ie theoretical) discussion with the RAC. NB just tell then you want to store it in Zambia for your next trip not that you want to donate it - importing a vehicle without paying the necessary taxes is exactly the type of scenario they are trying to prevent...

If you haven't already go and look at

www.africa.overland.net

for various trip reports - bikes and cars.
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  #3  
Old 13 Dec 2012
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thanks itchyfeet I have spoken to RAC they seem to be ok with leaving the bike in Zambia but tax will have to be paid and proof shown .do you know if you use 2 passports to apply for visas will it cause a problem when using one passport to enter and exit a country then using the other passport for the next country .I want to get as many visas as possible before I leave as my time on the road is short and don't want to spend days or a week to arrange visas on the road
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  #4  
Old 14 Dec 2012
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I was traveling south to north and got all the following visas at the border (ie no time wasted applying en route).

SA/Nam/Botswana (tho a permit I think rather than visa as a UK citizen)
Zambia
Moz
Malawi
Tanzania
Rwanda
Uganda
Kenya

I had to get the Ethiopian visa from the UK as there is nowhere to buy it coming from the south but you will be able to pick it up in a day or so at Aswan. I got the Sudanese visa in Nairobi (same day). You will be able to get in Cairo.

I can't tell you about Libya or Tunisia for that matter.

Given the above I wouldn't bother with multiple passports (which can be hard to get anyway). BTW I am a UK citizen.
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  #5  
Old 16 Dec 2012
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thanks itchyfeet for that info, I will try to get what visas I can before I leave and get the rest as I go .the bike has a standard tank 15lts good for about 180mls in your opinion is this big enough with mabey 5lts in a jerry can should do 240mls .don't want to spend £300 on large tank if not necessary money better going to the school .the route through Libya along the coast to Cairo south to Aswan Dongola Khartoum cross into Ethiopia at Metema to Gondor Addis Abeba cross into Kenya at Moyale south through Marsabit to Nairobi cross at Namaga to Tanzania then south to Arusha Dodoma Mbeya cross to Malawi south to Lilongwe then east into Zambia to Lusaka.
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  #6  
Old 16 Dec 2012
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As I understand it the trouble with getting visas before you set out is that most are only valid a short period of time ie they will expire before you reach the border. But you'll need to check with the individual embassies. I can't help re the fuel question as we were in a Land Rover and carried 120L ... There will be bikers on here who can tho.
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  #7  
Old 16 Dec 2012
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You can get all the visas in advance - if you use a good agency like Travcour that will whistle round the embassies with their bikers it wont take long - some visas last three months, some last six months - if you give Malawi a miss you will save on a visa. You need to be in top condition for that trek to Marsabit as the road is non-existent in places and hellish rough. On the recce for the London to Cape Town rally we met a Toyota which had suffered 17 punctures.

Will be coming up that route from the other direction in early Feb, setting out from Cape Town on Feb lst, look out for a white Panda.
Philip Young
www.africarecordrun.com
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  #8  
Old 16 Dec 2012
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Unless it has changed TIP is used in Zambia instead of CDP.
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  #9  
Old 16 Dec 2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Endurorally View Post
if you give Malawi a miss you will save on a visa.
They used to be free on entry to Brits, this might have changed though.
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  #10  
Old 16 Dec 2012
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Malawi still free entry for Brits. Ditto Rwanda, SA, Namibia, Botswana. Most others in southern/eastern africa are $50USD. Can't recall what Ethiopian visa cost in London. Sudanese was c $50USD in Nairobi. Egypt $15 USD (and you can buy on the ferry going north).

By all means get them in advance but for those you can get at the border you won't really save any time. You stand in the same queue to buy the visa as you do to get the entry stamp on the visa. However, you will definitely save a day and some hassle getting Ethiopia/Sudan in advance (and you will need to sort Libya out anyway) but otherwise nothing much to gain IMO.

Importing the vehicle is usually the more time consuming part of crossing African borders in my experience. Some countries require a carnet eg Kenya/RSA, others don't recognise a carnet and insist on a TIP eg Ethiopia and some will either accept a carnet or issue a TIP eg Zamiba/Malawi.
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  #11  
Old 21 Dec 2012
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[QUOTE=itchyfeet38;404278]Some countries require a carnet eg Kenya/RSA, others don't recognise a carnet and insist on a TIP eg Ethiopia"

Yikes - Ethipia doesn't recognise the carnet? I didn't realise that. I'm planning on driving into Ethiopia from Kenya. What is the TIP you mention?

Thanks
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  #12  
Old 21 Dec 2012
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It's not a problem John. All it means is that they'll give you a bit of paper (TIP) on entry an then ask to see it on exit. We never got one coming from the south as we came in via Turkana and there were no customs. It will either be free or a pretty nominal sum.

TIP just means temporary import permit.

They will probably stamp your carnet if you want them to but only get it stamped if you are planning on exiting at Moyale - if you go via Turkana you will have a stamp in and not out which isn't ideal.
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  #13  
Old 23 Dec 2012
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Great, thanks for the info Itchyfeet
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