Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some of the questions we get asked the most, and their answers. If you still need more clarification, please contact us.
1. Is Malaria a problem?
There is Malaria in Mozambique and in Tofo but its not a problem as long as you take preventative medication and cover up with mosquito repellant on all exposed skin (its a good idea to wear long trousers after dark) between dusk and dawn. We recommend avoiding Larium and instead opting for Malarone which, although more expensive, is very effective and doesn't have the side effects that Larium does. Check with your doctor for more information.
2. How do I get a visa to enter Mozambique?
You can get a visa at the airports in Maputo and Inhambane on arrival which is probably the simplest way, but its best to check with your nearest Mozambican embassy before you travel. You'll need at least 6 months validation in your passport from your return date. Some embassies ask for a letter of invitation from the resort you are staying in, or at least some evidence of your reservation in order to issue you with a visa. Tofo Travel will be able to provide this if necessary. You need to ask for a 30 day tourist visa. If you are a resident of South Africa, you no longer need a visa to enter Mozambique.
3. What other inoculations do I need to visit Mozambique?
Its important to check with your doctor for the most recent recommendations, but we suggest at least updated tetanus, and hepatitis. You don't need a yellow fever vaccination and cases of rabies are quite rare.
4. Is it safe to travel and is Tofo a safe place?
Yes, it is safe to travel in Mozambique, as long as you follow the usual rules as you would when on holiday or traveling in any country. Don't carry too much cash or your passport or credit cards on you. Don't leave your bags unattended - during busy holiday times there are incidences of bags being snatched from the beach. Women should not walk on the beaches alone at night. Tofo is generally a very safe place and the locals are friendly and helpful, but as with anywhere, its best to avoid very lonely places where someone might decide to take the opportunity to get whatever they can from you. As far as theft goes, as long as you lock doors and keep windows closed when you go out and especially at night its very unlikely that anyone will break into your room or chalet. If you leave valuables laying around outside and unattended, its possible that they will go missing...!
5. Is there internet access in Tofo?
Yes, at Tofo-On-Line which is located upstairs at Dinos Beach Bar. They have a fairly fast wireless connection, SKYPE and multiple computers for internet access and also offer business services such as fax, photocopy, lamination etc. Diversity Scuba's Cafe and the Hotel both have wireless.
6. Is there cell phone coverage in Tofo?
Yes, there are three networks M-Cel, Vodacom and Movitel. You can buy Mozambican SIM cards in Inhambane for very little and top them up with pre-paid credit.
7. What should I bring to wear?
The temperature in Tofo rarely drops below 20°C, even at night, so opt for light clothes, t-shirts, shorts and sandals. During the winter months you might need a sweatshirt or at least long-sleeve t-shirt to keep the chill off. During January and February and also a little in June and July, you might need a light rain jacket. A hat is essential as the sun is very strong, all year round, and especially if you are spending lots of time out on boats.
8. What other items do I need to bring?
Just bring the usual for any warm-weather holiday. Some of the accommodation require you to bring your own linen and towels but this will be specified on enquiry. Most accommodation have mosquito nets.
9. When is the best time of year to visit?
Any time is a good time but there are some times to avoid if you're uncomfortable with extreme heat - these are December until end of February/beginning of March. These can also be wet months. If you're planning on diving, February can be a windy month, as can August. The winter months (April to October) are great as the days are hot and sunny, nights are a little cooler but comfortable and the Humpback Whales are here. Summer months are great for warmer water diving and the Whale Sharks. Summer months are most popular and usually busier. As with everywhere, weather is changeable.
10. Can I use travelers cheques and are there ATM machines?
Travelers cheques are not accepted outside of Maputo and even there are very expensive to change, incurring large commissions. However, there is one bank approx. 2km outside of Tofo at the petrol station and there are three banks in Inhambane and these all have ATM machines that accept a wide range of international cards including VISA and Mastercard (note: not other credit card types), Cirrus and so on. For payments in Tofo, VISA cards are accepted by some businesses. Payment in Meticais is preferable but some places will accept Rands, Euros and Dollars, but usually at poor exchange rates. The best option is to change your foreign currency at the banks in Inhambane or withdraw Meticais from the ATMs. Don’t draw too much though. Meticais is not exchangeable once you leave!
11. Some tips on driving in Mozambique.
The speed limit on the main roads of Mozambique is 120km per hour. In towns and villages it reduces to 80km per hour and then 60km per hour. These speed limit zones are clearly marked and there are often traffic police with speed cameras so please watch your speed and stick to limits at all times. Fines for speeding can be large. It is also law for all passengers (front and back seats) to wear their seat belts at all times and you can also be fined for not doing this. If you are towing a trailer, you must display a red triangle on the front of your vehicle and the back of your trailer. Please make sure that all lights and indicators on your vehicle are working. Don't give the traffic police an excuse to fine you. If you are pulled over, stay calm and polite and be ready to show your driving license and car documentation. You must be able to produce the original car registration papers for your car when asked. Copies are not accepted.