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Windhoek, Namibia

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Road Conditions and Safety: Most major roads are generally well maintained, though many rural roads are gravel and fatal accidents are not uncommon. Tourists are often involved in single-vehicle roll over accidents. Sand, salt, and gravel roads become very slippery when wet and more dangerous at night. Animals easily visible by day become treacherous hazards in roadways at night. Do not exceed 45 mph (80km) on gravel roads. Many rental vehicle agencies void insurance policies if an accident occurs while speeding. Tire punctures are common as are accidents involving drunk drivers. Other driving hazards include excessive speed, lack of street lighting and shoulders, inadequately maintained vehicles, erratic driving habits, and pedestrians.

The Embassy does not recommend traveling after dark anywhere outside Namibia?s cities. Travel in desert areas or via the Trans-Caprivi Highway between Rundu and Katima Mulilo should only be undertaken during daylight hours. Carry water, additional fuel, spare tires, and provisions. Fuel availability can be sporadic. Professional roadside assistance outside Windhoek or off main roads is unreliable or non-existent.

Traffic Laws: Traffic drives on the left. You may use a U.S. license for up to 90 days or obtain an international driving permit prior to leaving the United States through either the American Automobile Association or the American Automobile Touring Alliance. It is illegal to use a cell phone while driving. Seat belts are required for all vehicle occupants. Motorcyclists are required to wear protective helmets. You may face a charge of culpable homicide if you are driving and are involved in an accident resulting in death.

Motorcades: Pull to the side of the road as far as possible and promptly follow instructions given by the officials present.

Public Transportation: Public transportation is not widely available outside the capital. Taxis and municipal buses are the only forms of public transportation in Windhoek. Schedules and routes are limited.

Avoid the use of public transportation, and hire private transport from a reliable source. Any form of public transportation is unregulated, unreliable, and generally unsafe.

Taxis: The Embassy has received reports of foreign citizens being robbed by drivers of taxis hailed on the streets of Windhoek. Car rentals or radio taxis (taxi service called in advance through established companies) are generally the best means of transport but may be more expensive. The Embassy has not received any such crime reports regarding radio taxis. U.S. citizens are urged to avoid hitchhiking in Namibia due to the high level of personal risk.

Most insurance policies will not cover accidents that do not involve other vehicles or animals.

See our Road Safety page for more information. Visit the website of Namibia?s national tourist office and national authority responsible for road safety.

Aviation Safety Oversight: As there is no direct commercial air service to the United States by carriers registered in Namibia, the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has not assessed the government of Namibia?s Civil Aviation Authority for compliance with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) aviation safety standards. Further information may be found on the FAA?s safety assessment page.

Maritime Travel: Mariners planning travel to Namibia should also check for U.S. maritime advisories and alerts. Information may also be posted to the U.S. Coast Guard homeport website (, and the NGA broadcast warnings website select ?broadcast warnings?.

Windhoek, Namibia
Windhoek, Namibia
Windhoek, Namibia
Windhoek, Namibia

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