The Republic of Zambia is a landlocked country in Southern Africa. It’s surrounded by Angola, Zaire, Tanzania, Malawi, Mozambique, Zimbabwe, Botswana and Namibia. Formerly known as “Northern Rhodesia” The capital city is Lusaka, in the south-central part of Zambia. The population is concentrated mainly around Lusaka in the south and the Copperbelt Province to the northwest, the core economic hubs of the country. The abundance of natural wealth has led to continuous
foreign involvement in the country.
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  • Population: 16,212,000
  • Language: English
  • Time Zone: CAT (UTC+2)
  • Dialling Code: +260
  • Currency: Zambian Kwacha (ZMW)


People from visa restricted countries should apply for a business or tourist visa prior to travelling to Zambia, at the Zambian Embassy or High Commission (certain countries have both) in their country. Furthermore, Zambia offers the e-visa service for visas.

For non-visa restricted countries, one can travel to Zambia without making prior arrangement. A tourist visa will be issued at port of entry and, for those who wish to conduct some form of business, a business visa will be issued for 30 days per 12month period.

It is recommended to provide an “invitation letter” from the receiving entity when asking for a business visa.

A business visa is intended for a person who comes to Zambia intending to attend meetings, conferences, seminars, corporate events, business prospection missions, arranging business transactions, signing contracts, to consult, to advise, for training, learning as an observant in a classroom and even doing repairs and installations. This also applies to a volunteer or an overseas worker who is paid by an employer abroad.

Business visas are issued for a maximum of 30 days annually (not a calendar year but 1 year from the date of the visa issuance). The visa holder can choose to use the 30 days in one single trip or to spread them throughout the year.

There are 2 types of work permits that applicants can apply for to work in Zambia:

(1) Temporary employment permit (valid for 3 months maximum)

(2) Employment permit (valid for 24 months maximum)

Temporary employment permits are for short term work and can be renewed only once, up to a maximum of 6 months in total. One can come in Zambia on a business visa and apply for a temporary employment permit in country.

Employment permits are for long term employment and cannot be applied for in country. The applicant must be outside Zambia to apply for an employment permit. This permit can be renewed in country as well.

The Zambianisation is a noticeable phenomenon consisting in privileging the employment of nationals instead of foreign workers; the objective is to lower the unemployment rate and increase the availability of skilled workers.

For temporary employment permits, the following documents are required: valid passport/ 2 photos/ CV/ copies of qualifications/ motivation letter from employer/ cover letter from the employer addressed to the DG of Immigration Dt with job description of the applicant.

For (long-term) employment permits, in addition of the documents provided for a short-term application, the other main documents required are: unabridged birth certificate/ police clearance from the country of origin/ medical certificate/ radiological certificate/ contract of employment/ info about prospective employer/ reference letters/ motivational letter from the company/ letter of invitation from the Zambian company/ transfer skills plan.

You must apply for the temporary employment permit in the country. The entry stamp when you entered the country must be included in the application.

The employment permit (long term) must be submitted whilst the applicant is outside of the country. As soon as the applicant receives the approval he can enter Zambia on a business visa or port of entry visa to collect in person the employment permit at the department of immigration.

No local advertisement or labour market testing is required for any work permit. Furthermore, the applicant does not need to proof or ensure a transfer of skills plan to a citizen. However, an employment permit application should include justification that the skills and experience required for the assignment are not available in Zambia.

Life partners do not benefit from any specific rights under the immigration law of Zambia. Therefore, a life partner cannot qualify for a spousal visa and must qualify in his/her own right for his/her permit.

Same-sex marriage is not recognised in Zambia. Therefore, similarly to life partners, they need to qualify in their own right.

We provide a full range of immigration services for Zambia. With our professional and trusted network of partners, we have the pulse on policy issues and the practical reality, which governs immigration rules & regulations.

We will first do a consultation, on which visa or permit would be the correct one for you. We advise on the required documentation and compile the complete application on your behalf. We will help you save time gathering the required documents to finalize your application.

There is great advantage in having a reliable local representative who will submit the application in Zambia, and also collect the resulting documents for you.