New Rules For Travellers To Zimbabwe Effective 1 January 2016

In a move looking aimed at shoring up declining revenues and to maximise on revenue collection from imports Government has with effect from 1 January 2016 come up with a number of new laws that govern the importation of goods and the operations of travellers.

Travellers Rebate

Travellers on bus, Zimbabwe beitbridge borderImage Credit: Herald.co.zw

Effective this new year, travellers are now only able to bring in US$200 worth of goods, that are not for commercial use and have been officially declared at a port of entry. This is down from $300 and a Statutory Instrument was passed in 2014 removing a number of items that could be imported (note link still contains old rate of $300) under the rebate. The rebate is pegged in United States dollars, so any fluctuations of the South African rand will not affect it.

Daily Remission of Duty

African man traveller back of truck, groceriesImage Credit: ZUU.co.zw

Same day travellers are now only allowed to bring in goods duty free valued at no more than $10, down from $50, as it had been noticed that residents around border post abused this facility by importing commercial consignments duty free on behalf of cross border traders, wholesalers and retailers. This also affects residents who import goods online.

Informal Transporters

Malayitsha, informal goods carrierImage Credit: Camper Van Africa

Travellers who import goods through ‘uMalayitsha’ (goods transporters who ferry stuff on your behalf), and other third party informal transporters carriers will now have their consignments classified as ‘commercial’ and not be illegible for travellers rebates. This has been done to spur growth of the local industry, to increase revenue to the fiscus as well as to protect bona fide transporters.

Cars parked at Zimbabwe border postImage Via: MPoverello.com

Even though borders like Beitbridge get chaotic, travellers undertaking immigration and customs formalities were limited to 3 hours free parking space within the customs controlled area, to perform activities linked to their crossing. A fine of US$2 per hour up to a maximum of US$20 was levied and the cap has been lifted effective 1 January 2016. Essentially, if you fail to complete your immigration and customs activities within 3 hours, know that you may be billed $2/hour…

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Also Effective 1 January 2016: New Traffic Fines