Five Southern Africa Tourist Nations Forge Univisa Alliance to hassle-free tourism


In a groundbreaking move to boost tourism, five Southern African nations—Angola, Botswana, Namibia, Zambia, and Zimbabwe—are joining forces to create a borderless adventure for international travelers. This innovative partnership aims to introduce a Schengen-style visa, allowing visitors to explore these diverse countries without the hassle of multiple visa applications.

The initiative builds upon the success of the “univisa” program, currently shared between Zambia and Zimbabwe, which also grants brief access to Botswana. Now, this visionary alliance is set to expand, welcoming Angola and Namibia into the fold. This expansion promises to transform the region into a more accessible and appealing destination for globetrotters.

By eliminating bureaucratic barriers, these nations are not only simplifying travel logistics but also encouraging visitors to delve deeper into the continent’s wonders. Travelers can now seamlessly transition from the majestic Victoria Falls to the pristine Okavango Delta, or from the ancient rock paintings of Twyfelfontein to the vibrant streets of Luanda, all on a single visa.

This collaborative effort reflects a growing trend in tourism diplomacy. Similarly, the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries—UAE, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, Oman, and Kuwait—are launching their own unified visa scheme, aptly named “GCC Grand Tours.” This initiative will allow travelers to immerse themselves in the region’s rich tapestry of cultures for over 30 days without additional paperwork.

Just as the Schengen visa revolutionized European travel, these innovative visa programs are set to redefine tourism in Africa and the Middle East. By fostering regional cooperation, these nations are not only boosting their tourism sectors but also promoting cross-cultural understanding and appreciation. As borders become more fluid, the true winners are the travelers, who gain unprecedented access to some of the world’s most captivating, yet often overlooked, destinations.