Getting from Livingstone Airport in Zambia to Victoria Falls in Zimbabwe seems simple enough, right? However, you’re crossing from one country to another, and entering “no man’s land” whilst doing so.
Before my trip to Victoria Falls, I read a lot of conflicting information about the border crossing from Zambia to Zimbabwe and after hours of research, I still didn’t have the answers.
Now that I’ve done it numerous times, I’ve crafted this helpful guide to help those wanting to do the border crossing from Zambia to Zimbabwe at Victoria Falls. If you’re just wanting to see the Victoria Falls Bridge, this guide is all you need!
Border crossing from Zambia to Zimbabwe at Victoria Falls
There are many reasons you would need to cross the Victoria Falls Bridge from Zambia to Zimbabwe.
The first is because most international flights land in Livingstone, Zambia and if you’re staying in Vic Falls you’ll need to get from Zambia to Zimbabwe.
Another reason for crossing the Victoria Falls Bridge is if you’re staying in Livingstone (Zambia) and want to visit Victoria Falls National Park from the Zimbabwean side.
And the final reason is that walking across the Victoria Falls Bridge is one of the best things to do near Vic Falls. So, regardless of where you stay, you should make an effort to go and view the falls from the bridge (and you would need to cross the border to do so).
Visa needed to cross the Victoria Falls Bridge
In order to get to the Victoria Falls Bridge, you will need to pass through either the Zambia or Zimbabwe border post.
If you’re from a country that falls within the SADC (Southern Africa Development Community), then you do not need a visa to enter either Zimbabwe or Zambia. This is the case for South African passport holders.
Most countries, including the USA and Australia, fall under Category B which requires a Visa On Arrival (VOA). Make sure you get the correct visa after landing at Livingstone Airport so that you are able to do the border crossing.
Kaza UniVisa at Zambia Zimbabwe Border
If you are just visiting the Victoria Falls Bridge and will not be going into a new country, you need a single entry visa on arrival ($30).
However, if you are going from Zambia across the Victoria Falls Bridge and then continuing to Zimbabwe (and re-entering Zambia), you’ll need a multiple-entry visa which is called a UniVisa.
This Kaza UniVisa visa costs $55 and allows you to cross the border as many times as you like in 30 days, given that you stay within Zambia and Zimbabwe.
Getting from Livingstone to Victoria Falls (Zambia to Zimbabwe)
My flight landed in Livingstone (Zambia) and I needed to cross the Vic Falls Bridge to get to the Zimbabwe side as I was staying at Shoestring Backpackers.
Below is the route you’ll follow. Because I had all my luggage, I chose not to walk across the bridge (but I did this activity the next day).
Whether you’re driving between the two countries or going to the bridge to see Victoria Falls, this is what you can expect.
Livingstone Airport → Zambia Border → Victoria Falls Bridge → Zimbabwe Border → Victoria Falls Town
The distance from Livingstone Airport to Victoria Falls town is only 20km but the journey takes over an hour thanks to the numerous border posts you need to stop at.
Below are step-by-step directions for crossing from Zambia to Zimbabwe at Victoria Falls Bridge.
1. Livingstone Airport to Zambia Border post
Driving from the Livingstone airport to the Zambia border post will take about 20 minutes. You can find a taxi outside the airport in Livingstone.
We paid $25 in total for this trip ($12.5 each) and the driver showed us where to get our passports stamped at the Zambia border.
2. Zambia and Zimbabwe border post (Across the Victoria Falls Bridge)
From the Zambia border post you need to get into another taxi and drive across the Victoria Falls Bridge. (If you are just going to see the bridge, you can walk from here)
You’ll need to get your passport stamped again at the Zimbabwe border post and then your border crossing is almost complete.
The drive from one border post to the next across the Victoria Falls Bridge takes 5 minutes and costs $5 for the trip. ($2.5 each).
3. Zimbabwe (Victoria Falls) Border post to Victoria Falls Town
The third (and final) taxi from the Zimbabwe border post to Victoria Falls town was $8 ($4 each) for the 5-minute drive. This rate isn’t fixed and we managed to get this trip for $5 later on.
Why I didn’t pre-book a Taxi from Livingstone Airport to Victoria Falls Town
I spent many hours researching and trying to find the cheapest taxi from Livingstone airport to Victoria Falls (or Victoria Falls to Livingstone Airport).
The standard rate is between $25 – $35 per person for a pre-booked trip. This means you’re in a taxi or shuttle the entire way (and not 3 different taxis like me)
Because I didn’t clearly understand the process for crossing from Zambia to Zimbabwe at Victoria Falls, I thought this rate was a bit excessive and so we decided to “wing it” as we were strapped for cash.
After landing in Zambia, with 7 pieces of luggage, we approached the various taxi drivers at the airport exit and tried our hand at bargaining.
The first problem – none of the taxis have licenses for their vehicles to cross the Victoria Falls Bridge from Zambia to Zimbabwe. Had we pre-booked a shuttle, we wouldn’t have had this problem as they have the correct licenses to move across the borders.
As a result, we needed to take a series of taxis to get from the Livingstone airport to Victoria Falls. Considering all the luggage we had, this was not ideal, but it was our only option.
Costs for a taxi from Livingstone Airport to Victoria Falls
Overall, with the 3 separate taxi’s, we paid $19 each instead of the pre-booked cost of $25 from Livingstone Airport to Victoria Falls.
In hindsight, I should have pre-booked a taxi! The extra costs would have been so worth it considering all the luggage I had.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can you cross the border at Victoria Falls?
Yes! Crossing the Victoria Falls Bridge is one of the best ways to see Victoria Falls. You can also go bungee jumping from here. Make sure you get the correct Visa On Arrival after landing in Zimbabwe or Zambia which will allow you to cross the border as many times as you want.
Is it easy to get from Livingstone Airport to Victoria Falls
If you’re traveling with lots of luggage, I recommend that you pre-book a transfer from Livingstone Airport to Victoria Falls. This is because many taxis don’t have the correct permits to cross the Victoria Falls Bridge. If you’re backpacking or traveling lightly, then I recommend taking a taxi to the bridge and walking across it, before taking another taxi to Victoria Falls town.
Practical information for Crossing Victoria Falls Bridge
- Distance from Livingstone Airport to Victoria Falls: 20km but the trip takes an hour.
- Costs to get from Livingstone Airport to Victoria Falls: $25 per person if pre-booked ($20 if you don’t).
- What to expect: 2 border crossings (one exit and one entry), the borders aren’t busy and it’s a quick and easy process.
- Bring: Your passport with the correct Visa On Arrival.
Looking for more Victoria Falls travel information? Check out my other posts!
- 14 Top Victoria Falls Activities
- Victoria Falls National Park: Entrance Fee and Travel Guide
- Victoria Falls Township Tour
- Zambezi Sunset Cruise
- Shoestring Backpackers in Vic Falls