A Guide to Botswana’s Visa Process

July 8, 2024

by Sofeeyah Lloyd & Kumbi Chiweshe

Planning an event in Botswana? Understanding the visa process is key, as many of your international attendees will need to secure a visa to enter the country. Fortunately, the process is usually straightforward for most.

This guide covers all the visa types your attendees might need, tailored to visitors from different countries. 

 

Quick Tips For Botswana Visas

  1. Visa processing takes up to 21 days.
  2. Visa fees are non-refundable, and personal checks are not accepted
  3. Botswana offers an e-visa service, providing a convenient online visa application process.
  4. Diplomatic Passport and United Nations Laissez Passer holders on official business are exempt from visa fees.
  5. Passports must be valid for six months or more with three or more unused pages.
  6. All supporting documents must be in English. A relevant authority must notarize translations.
  7. Foreigners with minors traveling through the country’s borders must produce certified copies of unabridged birth certificates.
  8. Citizens from 104 countries can enjoy short stays in Botswana without a visa. Continue reading to discover if your country is on this visa-exempt list.

 

What Type of Visa Will Your Event Participants Need for Botswana?

The following breakdowns show the visa options for international participants attending your conference in Botswana. 

The process, although pretty straightforward, can be complicated for some, so if you need help, we’ve got you covered. We’ve facilitated visa processes for all participants. Feel free to get in touch for assistance.

 

Visa Exemption

Citizens of Namibia can enter Botswana simply by presenting a valid identity card. Individuals holding diplomatic or service passports from China and India are also granted visa-free entry into Botswana.

Passport holders from the following 104 countries don’t require a visa for stays in Botswana for up to 90 days within a 12-month period. Beyond this duration, they will need to apply for a visa.

 

Angola

Antigua & Barbuda

Argentina

Australia

Austria

Bahamas

Bahrain

Barbados

Belgium

Belize

Brazil

Brunei Darussalam

Bulgaria

Canada

Chile

Costa Rica

Croatia

Cuba

Cyprus

Czech Republic

Denmark

Dominica

Dominican Republic

Estonia

Finland

France

Gambia

Germany

Greece

Grenada

Guyana

Holy Sea

Hong Kong

Hungary

Iceland

Ireland

Israel

Italy

Jamaica

Japan

Kenya

Kiribati

Kuwait

Latvia

Lesotho

Liechtenstein

Lithuania

Luxembourg

Malawi

Malaysia

Maldives

Malta

Mauritius

Mexico

Monaco

Mozambique

Namibia

Nauru

Netherlands

New Zealand

Norway

Oman

Papua New Guinea

Paraguay

Peru

Poland

Portugal

Qatar

Romania

Russia

Samoa

San Marico

Saudi Arabia

Seychelles

Sierra Leone

Singapore

Slovak Republic

Slovenia

Solomon Islands

South Africa

South Korea (Republic of)

South Sudan

Spain

St. Kitts & Nevis

St. Lucia

St. Vincent & the Grenadines

Swaziland

Sweden

Switzerland

Tanzania

Tonga

Trinidad & Tobago

Turkey

Tuvalu

Uganda

United Arab Emirates

United Kingdom

United States of America

Uruguay

Vanuatu

Venezuela

Yugoslavia

Zambia

Zimbabwe

 

 

Tourism Visa

The tourism visa, available to foreign nationals who need a visa for entry into Botswana, caters to visitors coming for leisure or short-term activities unrelated to work. It grants a stay of up to one month, with an option for an extension if properly justified.

Travelers with passports from the following countries will require a visa to enter Botswana.

 

Afghanistan

Albania

Algeria 

Andorra

Armenia

Azerbaijan

Bangladesh

Belarus

Benin

Bhutan

Bolivia

Bosnia & Herzegovina

Burkina Faso

Burundi

Cambodia

Cameroon

Cape Verde

Central African Republic

Chad

China

Colombia

Comoros

DRC – Democratic Republic of Congo

Congo (Republic of)

Côte d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast)

Djibouti

Ecuador

Egypt

El Salvador

Equatorial Guinea

Eritrea

Ethiopia

Fiji Islands

Gabon 

Georgia

Ghana

Guatemala

Guinea

Guinea Bissau

Haiti

Honduras

India

Indonesia

Iran 

Iraq

Jordan

Kazakhstan

Kyrgyzstan (Kirghizia)

Laos (Lao People’s Dem. Rep.)

Lebanon

Liberia

Libya

Macedonia

Madagascar

Mali

Mauritania 

Micronesia

Moldova

Mongolia

Montenegro

Morocco

Myanmar (Burma)

Nepal

Nicaragua

Niger

Nigeria

North Korea (Dem. People’s Rep. of)

Pakistan

Palau

Panama

Philippines

Rwanda

Sao Tome & Principe

Senegal

Serbia

Somalia

Sri Lanka

Sudan

Sumatra

Suriname

Syria

Taiwan

Tajikistan

Thailand

Togo

Tunisia

Turkmenistan

Ukraine

Uzbekistan

Vatican City

Vietnam

Yemen

 

 

Individuals on a Botswana tourist visa must refrain from employment during their stay, or their visa will be revoked.

The following items are required alongside the visa application form:

  • A certified copy of the first two pages of the applicant’s passport, ensuring a validity of at least six months.
  • Two recent colored passport-sized photographs of the applicant.
  • A cover letter detailing the purpose of the visit.
  • Meeting schedule (if coming to attend or organize a meeting).
  • Details of flights, accommodation, or the private address in Botswana where the applicant will reside.
  • A re-entry permit to the applicant’s country of residence, if such a permit is necessary.
  • A detailed itinerary of the trip.
  • Evidence confirming the applicant’s intent to depart Botswana post-visit.

 

The application for this visa can be submitted online via the Botswana official e-visa website or directly at the nearest Botswana embassy in their home country. Processing typically takes seven to fourteen days.

The fees are BWP 300.00 (approximately $30.00) for a single entry visa, valid for one month, and BWP 500.00 (approximately $50.00) for a multiple entry visa, valid for up to five years.

 

Business Visa

The Botswana business visa caters to foreign investors, entrepreneurs, or traders who need a visa to enter the country and are interested in exploring business opportunities. It encompasses various activities such as:

  • Consulting with business associates,
  • Participating in educational, professional, or business events
  • Engaging in contract negotiations,
  • Handling estate matters.

 

When applying for the Botswana business visa, applicants must attach the following supporting documents to the application form:

  • A certified copy of the first two pages of the passport, with at least six months of remaining validity.
  • Two recent color passport-sized photographs.
  • A cover letter detailing the reasons for the application.
  • Flight schedule and accommodation details in Botswana or a local residential address.
  • If required, a re-entry permit to the applicant’s country of residence.
  • Certificate of incorporation in Botswana, if applicable.
  • A comprehensive business plan.
  • A valid trading license.
  • A detailed schedule of planned business meetings or activities.
  • Bank statements from business operations in other countries and personal accounts.

 

Foreigners can complete and submit the visa application form online via the Botswana official e-visa website or any Botswana embassy or consulate in their home country. The processing time is up to seven working days. The visa is issued for a maximum of one year and cannot be extended.

 

The fees for the Botswana business visa are as follows:

  • Single entry (valid for up to 3 months): BWP 500.00 (approximately US$50).
  • Multiple entry (valid for up to 3 months): BWP 1,000.00 (approximately US$100).
  • Multiple entry (valid for up to 6 months): BWP 2,500.00 (approximately US$250).

 

Visitor’s Visa

Botswana’s Visitors’ Visa is designated for those coming for social reasons like

  • Visiting friends or relatives
  • Obtaining medical treatment,
  • Participating in events by fraternal, social, or service organizations,
  • Engaging as amateurs in musical, sports, or similar events without pay
  • Enrolling in short, non-credit recreational courses, such as a two-day cooking class during a vacation.

 

Eligibility extends to all foreign nationals needing a visa to enter Botswana as visitors.

This visa prohibits employment, service provision, or selling goods to local businesses or the public. It’s valid for up to 2 years for dependents of Botswana residents.

The processing time is typically seven to fourteen days and costs BWP 300.00 (US$30) for a single entry for up to 3 months, BWP 500.00 (US$50) for multiple entries for up to 3 months, and BWP 1,500.00 (US$150) for multiple entries lasting over three months up to 2 years for dependents of residents.

To apply, one must go to any Botswana embassy or consulate to complete Form 1 (Application for Visa) in person or online via the Botswana official e-visa website. The following documents should accompany the application: 

 

  • Certified copy of the passport’s first two pages (valid for at least six months)
  • Two recent colored passport-sized photos
  • Cover letter
  • Flight itinerary
  • Accommodation details or a residential address in Botswana
  • Re-entry permit, if required by the home country
  • A sworn statement by the host from the immigration office
  • Certified copy of the host’s identity documents
  • Letter of intent to leave Botswana post-visit
  • Financial proof of support.

 

Visa-on-Arrival

Botswana does not provide a visa-on-arrival service. Foreigners from non-visa-exempt countries must apply for and obtain the appropriate visa before traveling to Botswana.

 

Avoiding Scam Visa Websites

Beware of fake visa websites that charge too much or give false visas. To avoid this, ensure all your conference participants have the correct link to Botswana’s official eVisa website.

We’re here to assist if you need help with visa applications for your conference. Our team has a lot of experience with Botswana visa processes for events. We’ll help you every step of the way to make sure everyone can enter without issues.

 

How to Apply for a Visa to Botswana

Botswana has an online visa application form (Form 1) that visitors can download. Once completed, the form can be submitted with the necessary supporting documents to the immigration office, Botswana embassy, or consulate.

 

Applying Online

To apply for a Botswana visa online, travelers should use the official visa application portal to initiate a new application by selecting ‘Apply Now.’ The portal facilitates online payments, accepting MasterCard and Visa credit cards authorized for international transactions. 

Finally, regularly check the status of your visa application on the portal for progress reports and any additional steps or information needed.

Applying at the Diplomatic Mission of Botswana

If your event participants are unable to apply for a Botswana e-visa, they can apply through the Botswana Regional Immigration Offices, District Immigration Offices, or Missions Abroad.

Foreign participants can access the visa application form and detailed information about the application process on the Botswana immigration authorities’ website.

Visa application procedures differ depending on the applicant’s country. Participants are advised to contact the nearest Botswana Immigration Office or Mission Abroad to verify the specific visa requirements based on their location and nationality.

For assistance, participants can reach the Department of Immigration and Citizenship at Tel. (+267) 361 1300 or Toll-Free 0800 600 777. The offices are open from 7:30 to 12:45 and 13:45 to 16:30, Monday to Friday, excluding public holidays.

Applying upon Arrival at the Port of Entry

Botswana does not provide a visa-on-arrival service. Foreign participants needing a visa must apply for and obtain the appropriate visa before traveling to Botswana.

 

Requirements for entry into Botswana

There needs to be more than just a visa to guarantee entry into Botswana. Additional entry requirements that must be fulfilled include:

Passport Validity

All travelers to Botswana must have passports with a validity of six months or more with three or more unused pages, as one blank page is needed per entry.

Visa

Travelers from countries that require a visa for Botswana need to obtain a valid visa, with the type depending on their nationality and visit purpose.

Nationals exempt from visas can stay in Botswana for up to 90 days within 12 months without a visa. However, those not visa-exempt must secure their visa beforehand through Botswana’s Regional Immigration Offices, District Immigration Offices, or Missions Abroad in their respective countries.

It’s also expected that visitors have sufficient funds to support their basic needs, including food, accommodation, and transportation, throughout their stay in Botswana.

Health

Travelers from or transiting through Yellow Fever Infected Areas must carry an International Health Certificate proving vaccination against yellow fever. The Botswana Government does not require other vaccinations.

Additionally, getting vaccinated for malaria is recommended.

Invitation Letter

An invitation letter from the host or facilitator of an event or conference in Botswana is required for specific visit types, such as business, educational, or official visits.

The letter should state the purpose of the visit, the dates of the visit, and the relationship between the inviting party and the visa applicant.

Return or Onward Ticket

Proof of a return or onward journey is often required at the port of entry to Botswana.

Accommodation

For business travelers to Botswana, providing accommodation details is optional. However, it’s advisable to have a booking in place, particularly for late-night arrivals or travel during peak seasons.

 

Need Help Applying for a Botswana Business Visa?

Let our expert team in Botswana turn your event planning into a seamless and enjoyable experience.

From choosing the perfect venue to arranging transport, entertainment, and even visa application assistance, we’ve covered every aspect. 

Get in touch with us today, and our local team in Botswana will be ready to guide you through every phase, ensuring a smooth and stress-free planning process.

SHARE THIS
Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin

Browse our most recent blogs!

A Guide to the African Union Conference Center (AUCC)

The African Union Conference Center (AUCC) is one of Africa’s most technologically advanced conference centers.

Located inside the African Union headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, the AUCC comprises a conference center, office complex, and state-of-the-art facilities. It’s home to the biannual AU summit and serves as a venue for African and international events all year round.

If you’re considering hosting an event or conference at the AUCC, we’ve got everything you need to know in this quick guide.

Read More »

A Guide to Tanzania’s Visa Process

Organizing an international conference or event in Tanzania can be complex, particularly with visa arrangements.

This detailed guide aims to streamline the visa process with clear, step-by-step instructions to make your planning more manageable.

At Hallpax, we’re well-versed in the latest visa regulations and procedures, guaranteeing a hassle-free experience for your attendees. With us, you’re not just getting information; you’re gaining a partner in making your event in Tanzania a success.

Read More »

The United Nations Conference Centre in Addis Ababa (UNCC-AA)

The United Nations Conference Centre in Addis Ababa (UNCC-AA) offers state-of-the-art conference rooms and spaces In the heart of Ethiopia’s capital. Located in the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) compound, UNCC-AA accommodates various event types across numerous spaces, from small workshops to large conferences.

Each space has the latest technology, dedicated staff, and everything you need for a successful event.

In this quick guide, we’ll break down everything you need to know about hosting an event or conference at UNCC-AA.

Read More »

Ethiopia Visa Guide: The Best Options for Conference Attendees

Hosting an event in Addis Ababa can be a rewarding experience, providing participants the opportunity to learn, network, and immerse themselves in a vibrant and historic city. However, you must first ensure your international participants have the necessary visa documentation.

Consider this guide a comprehensive overview of the Ethiopian visa process, including the eligibility requirements, application procedures, and fees. We’ll also offer helpful tips and advice to ensure your attendees’ visa application is processed smoothly and efficiently. Need more help? Get in touch, we are eager to aid in your journey to Addis.

Read More »

The 8 Best Event and Conference Venues in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

Dar es Salaam’s best event venues harmoniously blend contemporary styles and modern amenities with Tanzania’s rich cultural heritage and the city’s coastal location.

Hosting an international conference here offers plenty of opportunities to create a unique and memorable event. But picking the wrong venue could spell disaster for even the most meticulously planned event.

Read More »

The Best Restaurants in Victoria Falls (Zambia and Zimbabwe)

Victoria Falls isn’t just about breathtaking natural splendor; it’s also a haven for foodies.

Straddling Zambia and Zimbabwe, this iconic landmark serves as a backdrop to fantastic restaurants that offer everything from gourmet fine dining to vibrant local eateries.

Whether you’re craving a gourmet pizza under the stars, high tea overlooking the Falls, or traditional Southern African dining experiences – Victoria Falls has something for every palate.

Read More »

Contact Us

Request Form